Cardiff City vs Birmingham City
(Cardiff City fans & players know how vital Peter Whittingham is to their promotion hopes)
Cardiff have made an excellent start to the season & currently sit in 2nd spot on the same amount of points as leaders Brighton & Hove Albion. They have won five of their eight matches & all their blips have come on the road. At home they have a perfect four from four record with victories over Huddersfield Town, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Leeds Utd & Blackpool. They dispatched Blackpool with ease at the weekend in an impressive 3-0 scoreline with a brace from defender Matthew Connolly & strike from Peter Whittingham. Whittingham has been one of the standout players in the Championship in recent seasons & again he is in superb form with six league goals in his last five games.
Birmingham have been inconsistent this season & this is shown perfectly in their last two league matches. They were hammered 5-0 at home by an average Barnsley side the other week & looked in disarray yet on Saturday these won away at Brighton 1-0 thanks to a wonder strike from Chris Burke. But this was their first win on the road after a draw & two defeats to Sheffield Wednesday & Watford.
Cardiff are brimming with confidence & they are surely too strong for a Birmingham side even if they do bring their 'A game' so take advantage of the Evens available with BetVictor for a Bluebirds victory.
Barnsley vs Peterborough United
In another Championship clash we see Peterborough travel to Oakwell to take on inconsistent Barnsely on the back of their first points of the season after shocking in form Hull in their last game, Barnsley meanwhile only managed a 1-1 draw with struggling Ipswich. It's dangerous to take too much out from any individual game but it's basically a bit tough to know what to make of Barnsley full stop who've had mixed results of 3 wins, 3 losses & 2 draws so far.
(Michael Bostwick has joined Peterborough from Stevenage & could be a key player)
The Tykes gained a huge success with a 5-0 win away to Birmingham just two games back but anyone who saw that game would know that Birmingham had a total stinker & looked a non-league outfit on the day, after that they were actually a little lucky to gain the draw with Ipswich as they could have easily been a couple down before Stephen Dawson equalised with a stunning volley. Barnsley's home games have all been pretty trappy affairs with two one nil wins followed by two 1-1 draws & maybe Keith Hill isn't being quite ambitious enough & that Birmingham win is actually the only time they've scored more than once in a game, with them scoring exactly one goal in each of their other 7. Craig Davies' scoring record looks impressive with 7 from 8 but again is skewed because of 4 goals v Birmingham & we're still unconvinced that Barnsley are a truly solid Championship side.
Peterborough came up with an unlikely 3-1 win at Hull after losing all of their previous 7 league games & the key was undoubtedly them eventually putting their trust in striker Emile Sinclair who repaid Darren Ferguson with a hat-trick. Sinclair had appeared 6 times in the league before Saturday but with 5 of those appearances coming as a sub & it was a similar story last season when half of his 28 games came from off the bench, he's surely booked a starting spot now & will be brimming with confidence. Posh suffered 4 of their losses by just one goal & with that victory a lot of pressure will be lifted off of the whole team & it could be worth following them for the time being. Our general rule with inconsistent teams is to avoid them when a short price & back them when the big odds are offered, we'll follow that rule here by ducking Barnsley at odds on & backing Peterborough at 3/1 to gain a second win of the league season.
Cardiff City to beat Birmingham City at evens (BetVictor)
Peterborough United to beat Barnsley at 3/1 (Various)