Bristol City vs Millwall
When in need of landing an over 1.5 goals pick, The Robins should be near enough topping any preconceived lists. Nigel Pearson’s men showcase a front-footed nature in the South West that attracts goals by the dozen, both for and against.
The 22 goals scored and the 22 conceded in 14 matches serves up a 3.14 goals-per-game Championship average. With that in mind, we should be okay on the goals front. Millwall pose City their next task. Those at The Den have been busy themselves, with a 2.46 goals-per-game average making up the numbers in the capital.
Millwall’s summer recruit Zian Flemming has bums off seats in that part of the country. The Dutchman’s shots per90 total (4.49) and his shots on target per90 figure (1.97) both lead the division, providing the visitors with a consistent source of attacking intent. That should bode well on Saturday.
If we’re witness to anything close to what we saw in the most recent head-to-head in January, we’ll be in for a treat. Five goals, three of which in Bristol City’s favour, and eight corners split five/three. On the subject of corners, Ashton Gate’s average flag numbers total 6.57 per 90 in 2022/23. So, in theory, City should threaten to hit the over 6.5 number on their own, although we can certainly expect Millwall to help them out.
Burnley vs Swansea
Bristol City are never far from the action when discussing Championship goals. And here they are again. Only a goal-hungry Robins outfit outdo Swansea City in the BTTS stakes when playing away from home. The 83% BTTS rate (5/6) from The Swans should stand us in good stead for their visit to Burnley, a side which has overseen 9/12 league fixtures with both teams scoring.
That’s likely a shocking statistic when thinking about this Burnley side. Often compact, stubborn, and hard to beat, yet they conceded often. Well, the Clarets are in for another test. Swansea have only failed to find the net in three Championship outings this season.
The Welsh ensemble can brag a 17.5xG from 13 matches to date. They haven’t quite reached Burnley’s 18.3xG, but that could change on Saturday. If they are to get one over on Vincent Kompany’s eleven, Joël Piroe will need to be firing. Just like his compatriot Zian Flemming, the Dutch striker boasts lofty shot averages and a cutting edge in forward areas.
At Turf Moor this season, Burnley are yet to record less than 1.0xG. That statistic points to goals in this 15:00 kick-off, as they do for corners. Similarly to Bristol City (again), the hosts’ 8.00 corners per90 average showcases their ability to rack up corners in the final third. Over 6.5 should, according to the numbers, be a realistic target here.
Sheffield United vs Blackpool
The Blades are leading the Championship this term, though they come into the weekend without a victory in three matches. In fact, two defeats paint the backdrop to Blackpool’s jaunt to Yorkshire. However, looking at the damning injury list and the key personnel unavailable for said match-ups, it’s no wonder.
Nevertheless, Sheffield United will be expecting to bounce back against The Seasiders no matter who they field on Saturday afternoon. Luckily for us, Sheffield United not only lead the league standings, but they also rank in the top three for corners forced per90 at home. The 7.17 corners from six matches indicate how dominant they can be in a game when either leading or chasing a deficit, like in recent weeks.
Delving into the underlying metrics, The Blades again rank third in expected goals. Sheffield United’s 20.2xG from 13 matches ensures they’re just one of three sides to have summoned 20.0xG this season. Expect goals and corners of the Blades variety, as Blackpool, on the back of a convincing Watford win, will be sensing opportunity.
The Seasiders won’t arrive and roll over to have their collective belly tickled. Instead, the Watford result will be fresh in the memory, and the absentee list will be common knowledge in that dressing room.
Gillingham vs Stevenage
Steve Evans’ Stevenage sits pretty at the top of League Two, a couple of points ahead of Leyton Orient in second. Five wins on the bounce in all competitions has the Hertfordshire-based club purring, with an out-of-sorts Gillingham, who have done enough to put points on the board in recent weeks, next on the hit list.
Both sides finished 21st in their respective divisions last season, with the lowly position enough to grant Gillingham relegation to the third tier. Luckily for Stevenage, only two sides face the drop out of the football league from this unforgiving division. Now, the pairing enjoys contrasting spells. Steve Evans, who vacated Gills in January and steered Stevenage to safety in 2021/22, would love to get on over on his old employer and Paul Scally, especially, after the Gillingham chairman openly criticised Evans at the time.
Evans’ side is in good enough shape to get the job done, that’s for sure. Stevenage ranks second in the league for over 1.5 goals when playing away from home. Only Hartlepool, who occupy 21st spot in the division with one win, have a 6/6 100% strike rate that is more reliable than The Boro’s 5/6 for punters this term.
As a byproduct of Stevenage pressure in six away matches this term, The Boro are averaging 5.83 corners forced per90. That total is the fourth-highest in the division, whilst also conceding 5.17 flags per90 when travelling around the country.