The Championship reaches its weekend conclusion with a Monday night game between Coventry City and Huddersfield Town. We’ve taken a look at this televised game and given you our best bets.
Firstly, let me just apologise for the Huddersfield-heavy nature of this preview. If my City-supporting colleague Simon Lillicrap was writing this piece, it may have been more Coventry biased but you know what they say? Write what you know…
Coventry (4/5) come into this fixture surprisingly below their visitors, after a mediocre start to the season with the Sky Blues winning just once in their opening seven fixtures.
Mark Robins’ men memorably made the play-offs last season and while they lost their star man in Viktor Gyökeres to Sporting Lisbon for €20m+ in the summer, they won’t have anticipated a drop-off quite like this.
City have lost just two of those games however, and are notoriously slow starters, having come from the bottom of the league last year, to storm into 5th spot. Three points at home against Huddersfield (10/3) would be a great way to get the show on the road.
It’s been another quiet week in the life of the Terriers.
Actually, scratch that, it’s been the usual stark, raving bonkers week, with last year’s saviour and all round Town legend Neil Warnock, told his services were no longer required, after back-to-back wins, as the new Huddersfield decision-makers had nailed down their long-term target.
Warnock (and long-serving deputy Ronnie Jepson) bowed out on Wednesday night with a well-earned point against a very decent Stoke squad and in came the new man, Darren Moore.
The ex-Sheffield Wednesday manager had been on gardening leave, after leaving the club (despite winning promotion) in the summer and had suddenly become available. Apparently Town could wait no longer…
The appointment has been met on fans forum, Down At The Mac and social media with the usual mixture of approval, dismay and utter disbelief.
The 49-year-old has only had one day in training to work with his new squad ahead of this fixture but will need to continue the momentum built up by Warnock, or could find the Town fans on his back from day one.
Robins had some bad news last week, with influential midfielder Ben Sheaf ruled out for six weeks with an abductor injury. He joins Callum O’Hare and Fabio Taveres on the crocked list and the Coventry boss is also sweating on the fitness of Milan van Ewijk.
New Town boss Moore is without Olly Turton and Loick Ayina for sure and could also miss Jonathan Hogg and Danny Ward, who are both recovering from illness/injury.
Coventry City to win – 4/5
It’s a long-held belief that a new side will gain a ‘new manager bounce’ upon a new appointment.
Well this could be that old wives tale in reverse. As most Town fans will tell you, Warnock was getting a tune out of an old VW Passat of a squad.
With Moore having just one training day, on Saturday to work with his side, it may be that they are almost left to their own devices.
Meanwhile, Coventry have five points from three games in front of their home fans and I expect them to pick up another three here.
Over 2.5 goals – 4/5
Whichever way the game goes, surely this one screams goals, goals, goals.
The two sides are averaging around three goals a game over their opening seven games and the last game for each side saw five and four goals scored respectively.
Neither defence is water tight and that should make for a hugely entertaining spectacle.