Charlton vs MK Dons
7th placed Charlton could find themselves in the playoff spots come the end of the night, and will be looking to take all 3 points against an MK Dons side in very contrasting form.
Despite a patchy start to the season, Charlton find themselves as one of the form teams in the league. They’re unbeaten in their last 5 and have now won 3 on the trot. This includes an emphatic 3-0 win and a fantastic performance against promotion hopefuls Portsmouth. Charlton are also unbeaten at home, having drawn 3 and won 4.
They’ve scored 9, and conceded just 3 in this unbeaten run, evidence enough to suggest that a poor MK Dons side should have their work cut out. In addition, they’ve amassed 15 goals, and conceded just 5 in their 7 home fixtures.
An xG at home of 1.47 per 90 is certainly respectable, and highlights the clinical nature of the Charlton side when in front of their own fans, given that they score an average of 2.14 goals a game when at The Valley. An xGA of 1.25 per 90 in home fixtures is also very solid.
MK Dons meanwhile are languishing down at the very foot of the League One table. They’ve lost each of their last 5 games, conceding 11, and scoring just 4 in the process.
They’ve lost 4 of their 6 away games, with their two wins coming against 23rd placed Morecambe, and 19th placed Oxford. They’ve struggled against tougher opposition, having lost every game played against a team from the top half of the table.
The xG charts also don’t work in MK Dons’ favour. An xG of 0.93 per 90 is the second worst in the division, and an xGA of 1.79 per 90 would suggest that Charlton should find themselves plenty of opportunity against a deflated opponent.
Charlton look set to make a real push for playoff spots this season, and if performances against Portsmouth and Shrewsbury are anything to go by then they should win comfortably against what can be classed as inferior opposition tonight.
Tranmere vs Rochdale
Tranmere Rovers have really picked up their form of late, and a win over lowly Rochdale tonight could see them into the playoffs by the final whistle.
The home side come into this one off the back of a 1-1 draw with Harrogate, this being the only blemish on their card in their last 6 games. 5 straight wins prior to that means that they are the form team in League Two.
Rovers have scored 17, and conceded just 10 in their 14 games thus far. Their stats are even more impressive of late, with 9 goals scored and 1 solitary goal conceded in their unbeaten league run of 6.
The xG charts in League 2 are particularly strange, and a simply adequate average of 1.33 per 90 ranks Tranmere in the middle of the pack. However an xGA of 1.23 per 90 ranks 4th in the league, and is testament to the sides’ recent solidity at the back.
Rochdale, much like tonight’s hosts, have seen an upturn in their form of late. All 3 of their wins this season have come in their last 5 games. Although they did lose last time out to Wimbledon at home, a poor result given that Wimbledon had won just 1 of their last 8.
With just 11 goals scored and 21 conceded, they sit 22nd in the League Two table, and their task tonight will be made all the more difficult against a side who have won 4 out of 5 at home, and have the second best defence in the league.
Despite a decent run of form, Rochdale’s stats make for grim reading. An xG of just 1.00 per 90 is the 4th worst in the league, and an xGA of 1.44 per 90 ranks them 5th from bottom in this metric as well.
Rochdale will really have their work cut out for them against a buoyant Tranmere side, but their recent form suggests that they’re capable of being stubborn. Having said that, Tranmere have been brilliant of late, and with no fresh injury concerns, they should be able to win one half of football here.
Wrexham vs Halifax
The National League’s top scorers take on the team that sits last for the very same metric in this one, and it could very well be a bloodbath.
Wrexham have received all the plaudits for their eye-catching, attacking football this season. And rightly so, as they find themselves 2nd in the National League table with just 2 losses to their name. They’ve amassed 39 goals in their 14 games thus far, for 2.79 goals per game average
The Welsh outfit’s home form is also absolutely frightening. They remain unbeaten in 6, and have netted 27 times, for 4.50 goals per game. They’ve scored at least twice themselves in 9 of 14 of their games, and all but 2 have finished with over 1.5 goals. Both of these were away from home.
An xG of 2.15 per 90 ranks first in the league, and this already impressive total rises to 2.64 when at home, meaning that Halifax will have their work cut out when it comes to preventing clear cut chances.
Halifax have started the season in contrasting form, having lost 50% of their games this campaign. They’re the league’s lowest scorers with just 11 in 14.
They’ve conceded at least 4 to every team that they’ve played against in the top half of the table.
Away from home, Halifax’s xG sits at a poor 1.08 per 90, and an xGA of 1.70 per 90 suggests that they’re likely to struggle against such a potent force as Wrexham. However, Wrexham have conceded 16 in 14, and may be able to grab themselves a goal here.
Wrexham should well run away with this one given the quality in their side. Paul Mullin and Ollie Palmer have a combined 20 goals already this season, and Halifax should find them difficult to stop. I expect Wrexham to win, and they should score over 1.5 goals themselves.
Woking vs Dorking
National League outfit Dorking have become a favourite of mine this season, and as always, look a great pick for goals. They’ll have help from Woking today, another side that has seen plenty of goal heavy games this season.
There have been a minimum of 2 goals in all but 1 of Woking’s 14 games this season, with all of their home fixtures hitting this number. It helps that they’re both potent in attack, and ever so slightly shaky in defence. 25 goals scored and 15 conceded means that there’s an average of 2.86 goals per Woking fixture.
Goals in last 5 Woking games: 4, 5, 2, 4, 2
An xG of 1.70 per 90 is very strong, and Woking will surely create a multitude of chances against a very open and expansive Dorking side.
Only Barnet have a higher combined total of goals both scored and conceded than Dorking in the National League.
With the 6th best attack, and the 3rd worst defence, Dorking games average a ridiculous 4.14 goals. They’ve scored 27 of these, and conceded 31.
Much like tonight’s opponents, all but 1 of Dorkings games this season have finished with a minimum of 2 goals. In fact, 12 of their 14 fixtures have had a minimum of 3 goals.
Goals in last 5 Dorking games: 4, 5, 2, 6, 5
An xG of 1.57 per 90 means that they will create chances, but their xGA of 1.97 per 90 is the second worst in the league. This is great news for a game in which we need goals to flow, and I fully expect Woking to take advantage of Dorking’s defensive shortcomings.
Over 2.5 goals is a solid shout here. I expect both teams to contribute, and at least one of the sides should bag a couple.