Bristol City, fresh off their FA Cup success over West Ham United, are back in league action this weekend as they host Watford in the Championship.
The Robins enjoyed a famous night in midweek as boyhood fan Tommy Conway scored early on to secure a 1-0 win and safe passage to the fourth round.
Now Liam Manning’s task will be to get three points against an improving Watford side, with both of these teams harbouring outside aspirations of a top six finish. Below we have previewed the match-up and come up with a couple of betting picks for you to consider ahead of the kick-off, at 15:00 on Saturday.
Mark Sykes could return to the Bristol City squad for this one having been out with a hamstring injury and Manning may look to freshen up his side after a busy week. Sam Bell and Jason Knight are both pushing for starts and the manager could decide rotation is needed after two gruelling encounters against West Ham.
Valerien Ismael looks to have stumbled upon his winning formula, although there may be changes as Rhys Healey has been linked with a £2m move to Huddersfield Town. Mileta Rajovic could come in for the number nine, while Ryan Porteus could return at the back.
Bristol City are 7/5 to win this match, while Watford can be backed at 2/1. A draw is available at 9/4, BTTS is 8/11 and over 2.5 goals is 10/11.
Over 2.5 goals @ 10/11
Watford find themselves in the middle of an enthralling run of games. Both teams have scored in their last 11 matches in all competitions, a remarkable streak that shows both their attacking prowess and defensive frailties. They beat QPR 2-1 last time out thanks to a Jake Livermore brace, while more importantly, the reverse fixture on Boxing Day ended 4-1 to Bristol City.
There’s clearly a recipe for goals here, potentially from both sides, which makes the over 2.5 goals price of 10/11 excellent value in my eyes. Watford’s last clean sheet came against 24th-placed Rotherham United on the 11th November, while Bristol City have found the net twice in two games against Premier League West Ham. A cracker could unfold at Ashton Gate.
Watford to win @ 2/1
Watford are unbeaten in their last four matches, and have won their last two, against Chesterfield and QPR respectively. The reverse fixture, a 4-1 defeat to Bristol City, occurred less than a month ago, but that doesn’t mean this will be straightforward for the Robins. Quite the opposite in fact.
Valerian Ismael and his players will be desperate to prove themselves, and while City have enjoyed cup success, in the league they have been lacklustre of late. They haven’t scored in their last three league matches, losing to Millwall and Preston without scoring and drawing a blank against Birmingham City - who were managed by Wayne Rooney at the time.
With their ability to score goals, Watford can go and gain a valuable three points here, as Isamel looks to drive the 8th-place side into the play-offs.
Check out our Football Betting Tips here.