GW 34 – Ones to Watch
Matt: Some excellent scoring last weekend, with the likes of Portsmouth and the much lesser fancied Solihull Moors – one of the teams i tipped in this very section the week before no less! – really getting into the goalscoring groove with 5 apiece. More of the same this weekend please!
First up i’m heading into the English Championship, where i simply can’t ignore the fixture between West Bromich Albion and Ipswich Town at the Hawthorns. The Baggies are on the hunt for automatic promotion, but after a crushing 4-0 defeat at Leeds a week ago, they absolutely cannot afford to slip up against the league’s basement side. 67 goals scored versus 59 conceded, plus no clean sheets on the road for The Tractor Boys unsurprisingly, tells me that West Brom are too good a pick to turn down.
Heading north of the border, another team i’m finding extremely difficult to resist this weekend is Arbroath. The Red Lichties face Stenhousemuir in a top v bottom League One clash, but this perhaps won’t be the straightforward afternoon some of us might hope. The visiting ‘Warriors’ have showed some great fight on their travels recently, including a superb effort at Aberdeen as they held the Premiership outfit to a shock 1-1 draw at Pittodrie, before succumbing 4-0 in a Scottish Cup replay. Despite Arbroath’s patchy form, they are still 14 points clear at the top and i feel that an early goal could see the floodgates open. Good luck to you all.
Ally: For my first tip I’m going for Scottish Championship leaders Ross County, who will be looking to strengthen their case for promotion back to the Premier League with victory over mid table Morton. Ross currently hold a 5 point advantage over nearest challengers Dundee United, and will see this game as an ideal opportunity to exert further pressure on their rivals. The Dingwall club are the division’s top scorers, and have failed to register on home turf just twice this season. They will also be buoyed by the fact that their biggest win of the season so far was a 5-0 victory against the same opponents back in October. As if that wasn’t enough, the visitors arrive on the back of a four match losing streak away from home, while The Staggies have scored at least 2 goals in each of their last 6 home matches.
Staying north of the border but dropping down a division takes me to League One’s third placed team Raith Rovers, who face a home game against Airdrieonians. The Kirkcaldy side are the leading scorers with 58 goals in just 27 games, yet still find themselves a huge 15 points behind leaders Arbroath. They also boast an enviable goals scoring record at home, amassing 31 goals in their 14 league matches at Stark’s Park. They have only failed to score once, against leaders Arbroath, but bouced back from that disappointment to brush aside Montrose last time out with a 4-1 scoreline. Visitiors Airdrie have lost their last four away games, and have just 2 league away clean sheets to their name, and I don’t see that run improving on Saturday.