Our expert football tipsters know that having as much information as possible is the key to profitable betting, so we’ve teamed up with some of Racing Post Sport’s most knowledgeable experts to bring you the very best football tips across all of British football. Every weekend we’ll be bringing you the top picks from Mark Langdon, Dan Childs, and Mark Walker. Follow Racing Post Sport on Twitter
Mark Langdon’s Football League Predictions
Carlisle v Northampton – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
There will be a fan protest against Carlisle’s owners before their Sky Bet League Two clash with Northampton and the pre-match atmosphere could be matched by a gloomy post-game mood at Brunton Park. Various issues are concerning the Carlisle supporters and, after a summer of significant budget cuts, United will do well to get anywhere near to matching last season’s efforts of tenth under departed boss Keith Curle. John Sheridan has replaced Curle and last week’s 3-1 defeat at Exeter suggests much work needs doing on the training pitch because a solution is unlikely to be found in signing new players given the delicate financial situation.
Northampton also suffered an opening-day defeat, losing 1-0 at home to Lincoln, yet it would be Cobblers to write off Dean Austin’s side following an excellent performance which deserved at least a point, and probably all three. The Cobblers won the shot count 15-4 and it was 8-2 for on-target efforts. They also had 58 per cent possession and six of the seven corners with Imps boss Danny Cowley admitting his goalkeeper Josh Vickers was “magnificent.” Matt Crooks and John-Joe O’Toole give relegated Northampton a classy look to their midfield for a League Two side and it shouldn’t be long before summer arrival Andy Williams gets off the mark up front. Things could turn around for the visitors here, and we see them getting a win.
Recommendation – Northampton draw no bet at evens (2pt stake)
Crawley v Stevenage – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
Staying in the basement, it could be worth taking the view that Crawley are at least the equals of Stevenage. If that’s the case the hosts look the bet with home advantage. There were negative vibes surrounding Harry Kewell’s appointment for the start of last season, but the Australian helped Crawley creep up to 14th, four points better off than Stevenage, in his first campaign and the Red Devils played a pleasing brand of football along the way.
That caught the eye of bigger clubs, with centre-back Josh Yorwerth heading to Peterborough and Enzio Boldewijn joined Notts County for a hefty fee which has enabled Kewell to strengthen in key areas. Assist king Filipe Morais is too good for League Two and he will be supplying strikers Dominic Poleon and Ollie Palmer. Romain Vincelot is also a shrewd acquisition to replace Yorwerth, so they look strong overall at this level. Given Crawley were fully deserving of their 1-0 win at Cheltenham last week, while Stevenage were held to a draw by Tranmere, a home win is the bet here.
Recommendation – Crawley to win at 7/5 (1pt stake)
Sheffield Wednesday v Hull – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
There is a similar situation to the Crawley game at Hillsborough where Sheffield Wednesday can make home advantage count against Hull. Wednesday were eight points better off than Hull last term and there were excuses for their poor shot data as they absorbed an astonishing injury list for much of a difficult campaign.
The Owls did not play well in last week’s 3-2 loss at Wigan, although the newly-promoted Latics are possibly better than a normal side heading up to the Championship, and the key aspect is that Wednesday have many of their influential players fit again. Hull scored a whopping 70 goals last season but conceded the same amount and most of their goalscoring talent departed in the summer. The defensive issues, however, have not been resolved, as shown in Monday’s 3-1 home loss to Aston Villa.
Recommendation – Sheffield Wednesday to win at 11/8 (1 pt stake)
Blackpool v Portsmouth – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
Life is never boring in Blackpool and the football team lives up to the excitement of the lively seaside resort, although unfortunately for their long-suffering supporters the rollercoaster ride has had more downs than ups.
Respected boss Gary Bowyer’s patience finally broke this week as he quit the club one game into the season and skipper Jay Spearing has spoken of the difficulty of trying to practice without a training ground, waiting for daily texts on where the sessions will take place. Goalkeeper Mark Howard was the star turn in last week’s 0-0 draw with Wycombe and Portsmouth may not need to be anything special to take advantage of the Tangerines’ off-field issues.
Recommendation – Portsmouth draw no bet at 10/13 (1pt stake)
Gillingham v Burton – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
Complete a busy day by backing Burton to bounce back from their loss to Rochdale by gaining a positive result at Gillingham in Sky Bet League One. Albion are not getting much respect in most places for a side who were only just relegated from the Championship last season. However, Sporting Index interestingly rate the Brewers seventh favourites for League One.
If they get anywhere near to their estimated points tally of 63-65 then Nigel Clough’s men should be favourites for this game despite Gillingham beating Accrington last week.
Recommendation – Burton draw no bet at 10/11 (1pt stake)
Liam Flin’s Non-league Predictions
Havant & Waterloovile vs Fylde – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
Havant & Waterlooville’s promotion to the National League was built around a solid defence but it will be put to the ultimate test when they take on clinical AFC Fylde. The National League top scorers with 82 goals last term, Fylde’s best piece of business on deadline day was retaining the man who notched 24 of them. Star forward Danny Rowe was reportedly subject to a six-figure bid from League Two Cheltenham but remains with the Coasters.
Fylde have taken four points from two testing fixtures against Bromley and away to Wrexham, and they were impressive at both ends of the field against the Welsh outfit. The majority of their summer business was focused on shoring up their defence with Arlen Birch, Neil Byrne, Luke Burke and Danny Kane joining and they should have no issues against Havant & Waterlooville. The hosts were out of their depth in a 3-0 opening-day defeat to an average Barrow team and their defensive disorganisation could be punished by the Lancashire club.
Recommendation – AFC Fylde to win at 13/8 (3pt stake)
Gateshead vs Dover – Sat 11th Aug (15:00)
Seven of the 11 players who started Gateshead’s final game of last season have left and their new-look team can make it three wins from three games against Dover. Former Premier League defender Mike Williamson joined the club in one of the shrewdest moves of the summer, while new signing Luke Armstrong took his tally to three goals with a brace against highly-rated Salford on Tuesday.
Dover have taken just a point from their first two matches after conceding a late goal against Bromley last time out and they could be set for another defeat.
Recommendation – Gateshead to win at 7/5 (1pt stake)
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