The final matches before Christmas Day promise to provide bags of entertainment, and we’re hopeful that there will be goals galore in our three selected matches for a tasty 11/2 winner.
Our picks come from the Championship, League One, and National League. As long as our six chosen teams find the target, the Christmas celebrations will be up and running in style.
Good luck, and Merry Xmas!
Sheffield Wednesday v Middlesbrough
Goals have been a fairly common feature at Hillsborough this term with Sheffield Wednesday scoring 17 of the 30 goals scored here in the 11 games of 2017-18 thus far. The for and against tallies could both be set to increase as Middlesbrough come to town.
A run of six games without a win has left Carlos Carvahal reportedly fighting to save his job, but the Owls still boast several sources of goals. Gary Hooper leads the line on that front and is more than capable of firing the hosts to a positive result in spite of the team’s disappointing performances overall.
Boro have been far from sparkling themselves. While the play-offs are still a realistic possibility, A return of 15 away goals is pleasing, but they will concerned at conceding 13. Britt Assombalonga and co. will be desperate to fire the visitors to an important pre-Christmas win. However, they might need more than one strike to grab all three points in this one.
Both sides will be disappointed with their seasons up to now, but a win on Saturday could be the catalyst for either side as the season hits its midpoint. Whichever way it goes, goals should be on the cards.
Wimbledon v Bradford City
Goals haven’t been easy to find for Neal Ardley’s Dons, who boast just nine in 11 at Kingston Road this term, but they have now scored in five of six competitive home matches. They should be ready to extend that run on Saturday, even if a win against high-flying Bradford looks unlikely.
The visiting Bantams boast the best away record in League One, and will be fully expected to grab three points as they continue their push for promotion. With 21 goals scored in 11 outings, Stuart McCall’s men should be confident against the relegation battlers. Charlie Wyke and co. are more than capable of finding the net.
Bradford have shipped 12 times on the road, though, while they haven’t registered a shutout in their last four games overall. Wimbledon need to start scoring more if they are going to stay up and the firepower of Lyle Taylor should give them a chance, especially as the visitors should let them in on a few occasions.
An away win will be largely expected, but we believe the smart money is with goals.
Hartlepool United v Maidenhead United
National League sides Hartlepool and Hartlepool are separated by goal difference alone heading into Saturday’s showdown at Victoria Park. This could be reflected by a close affair in this one, but it is a game in which both teams should have chances.
The hosts have scored 14 times and conceded 13 in their 12 home games this season. While they have won just one of their last five, Craig Harrison can be quietly optimistic about his side’s chances of at least finding the net. Not least because the visitors have shipped 20 in just 12 aways.
Maidenhead do boast 17 on their travels, however, making Alan Devonshire’s men great value for entertainment. With the goals being spread out across the team, they have very reason for confidence, especially after losing just one of their last six competitive fixtures.
Then again, they’ve only won once in that time too, so you wouldn’t rule out Hartlepool. Whatever happens, let’s keep our fingers crossed for goals.