Cardiff would have clear daylight between themselves and the chasing pack if they hadn’t let slip leads at Crystal Palace and Bolton, although the Welsh club are now favourites to win the Championship and look especially strong at home.
There has been a relentless managerial merry-go-round in the past few weeks which has seen Burnley, Blackburn, Blackpool, Bolton, Crystal Palace and Ipswich hunt for new managers. The Tangerines will hope to have someone in place before they travel to Sheffield Wednesday.
Charlton Athletic v Cardiff City 19:45
The Addicks stormed to League One promotion last season after beating the Sheffield clubs to the title, although it’s been tough in the Championship for Charlton Athletic, especially at The Valley where they have already lost four home games this season.
Chris Powell always knew this campaign would be about consolidation although confidence was rocked on Saturday when Middlesbrough scored four and Cardiff are the 11/8 favourites (Paddy Power free bets) to claim three points to keep them blazing a trail at the top of the table.
Charlton will be encouraged by the fact that City aren’t the greatest travellers and have lost four times on the road this season, conceding thirteen goals in the process. Although the Addicks have been more effective on the road, they can be backed at 85/40 to continue making life difficult for Cardiff on the road.
Nottingham Forest v Middlesbrough 19:45
Tony Mowbray insisted that his team could challenge for honours this season despite the fact that they have a smaller wage budget than several clubs in the division and Boro have found a winning formula which has seen them rise several places and they are bang in the promotion mix.
Middlesbrough have won nine of their fourteen matches and come into this game off the back of a six-match winning run, with a 4-1 victory at Charlton setting them up nicely for this trip to the City Ground. It’s something of a surprise to see the visitors on offer at 13/5 (Betfred free bets) to win this particular game.
After all, Nottingham Forest were conversely on the receiving end of a 4-1 defeat on Saturday as Millwall ran riot in the Midlands which is a result that will leave Sean O’Driscoll scratching his head as to how his team hit the buffers in such a dramatic fashion.
The Tricky Trees have a chance to immediately set things right and they’re an 11/10 chance to beat Boro and propel themselves back into the top six, although scoring goals can often be a problem at home even though Billy Sharp and Simon Cox are both handy strikers at this level.
Sharp was on the scoresheet to score his team’s consolation on Saturday and he’s 11/2 to score the first goal, while Scott McDonald is in great form for the visitors and is as big as 15/2 to break the deadlock.
Hull City v Wolves 19:45
Steve Bruce has an express remit to get the Tigers promoted to the Premier League this season and it’s been a decent start for the former Birmingham, Wigan and Sunderland manager who has a wealth of experience to help Hull City go close this season.
City have won five of their seven matches at the KC Stadium and they have taken a maximum haul in four of their last five games which rightly makes them favourites to beat Wolves on Tuesday night. They could well prove to be a popular punt at 23/20 (Ladbrokes bookmaker).
Wolves are 9th in the table although their away form is pretty decent, with Stale Solbakken’s side taking three wins from seven matches and that included a sneaky 1-0 at Ewood Park a month ago.
Since then, it’s been just two points from four games and Saturday’s 2-0 reverse at Burnley puts pressure on the manager who is expected to deliver a top six position this season. Even so, perhaps they are a touch too big at 11/4 to claim victory in this match, with Steve Bruce having been reportedly close to joining Wolves last season.