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Championship Predictions > Jan 1st & 2nd

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Apologies all. It appears the topic I posted for the New Year's Day matches didn't actually post. I've realised just in time to get the odds and ratings for the matches tomorrow up and to make up for my error I'll get a preview for both games up tomorrow. Let us know what you think ahead of these games and what bets you like the look of. :ok

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Derby vs Barnsley

The first preview I'm getting up today for the pair of games tonight is the match between Derby and Barnsley that is set to kick-off at 7:45pm GMT from Pride Park. It's another opportunity for both sides to try and scramble away from the relegation quagmire. Both teams have enjoyed a positive festive period so far but can they end it on a high with a victory here?

Derby pulled off one of the performances of their season in the 2-1 win over Charlton earlier this week with only 10 men. A brace from youngster Jason Knight was exactly what manager Phillip Cocu wanted from his side after a dire run of 7 league games without a win. The Rams are now up to 17th in the table and 7 points clear of the relegation zone. Another win in their back-to-back home matches would really give them some breathing space above the bottom three. A big concern continues to be their slack defence with the club failing to keep a clean sheet in their last 8 league games.

Barnsley continue their resurgence under new head coach Gerhard Struber. It's now 5 league games without a loss. The last game they lost in the league was actually the 3-2 defeat away to Cardiff that I attended with my son and I have to say they impressed me that day. They certainly didn't look like a team that was embroiled in a relegation battle. The issue, like Derby, is with their defence. Only Cardiff, Wigan, and Luton have conceded more goals on the road than the Tykes.

I am swaying towards @AussieDex's thinking of both teams will score due to their shambolic defences. You have to wonder how much the victory over Charlton in their last game took out of the legs of Derby. I was surprised they ended up winning that game but think it was more a combination of Knight's individual brilliance and Charlton's awfulness. I was tempted to back a draw but I actually think given their recent form that Barnsley could be worth backing to some degree here.

Barnsley Draw No Bet @ 2.22 with Marathonbet

Total Goals Scored Over 2.5 @ 1.82 with Marathonbet


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Swansea vs Charlton

The second preview for the matches tonight covers what appears could be a one-sided game between play-off chasing Swansea and relegation strugglers Charlton in a 7:45pm GMT kick-off from the Liberty Stadium. The bookies and the ELO ratings have the home side edging this one and after the away side's disappointing performance earlier in the week it'll be hard to argue.

Swansea had looked like being potential automatic promotion contenders at the start of the season but things have tailed off for Steve Cooper's side in recent weeks. The Swans are 10th in the table and only 2 points off the play-off places. However, it's just 2 wins from their last 10 league games and both of those victories came in games against Middlesbrough and Luton where they were firm favourites to win. They head into this home game with a very average record on home turf of just 5 wins in their 13 home league games. That said, they are unbeaten in their last three league games at home.

Charlton are in a bad state at the moment. The Addicks confirmed the signing of loanee Andre Green from Aston Villa today after he had his loan at Championship rivals Preston cut short. Lee Bowyer's men need something right now because they look bereft of ideas and confidence. The club has plummeted down the table to 19th place and just 5 points above the relegation zone despite being considered as shock play-off hopefuls just a matter of weeks ago. It is just 1 loss from their last 4 games in the league over the festive period but that shows how stats can be manipulated because it's also just 1 win from their last 13 league games.

I think this is Swansea's game to lose. Charlton have only won 2 games on the road in the league this season and the last one of those came way back on 31st August. Cooper's side tend to fair well when they're the favourites and I think they'll have enough about them to punish a Charlton defence that looks really shaky right now. They might have added the creativity of Green but they need to address urgent issues at the back if they're to avoid free falling into the relegation zone.

Swansea -1 @ 2.50 with SpreadEx

Swansea HT/FT @ 2.35 with Coral

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