Weblog: The football punter

Bristol City look big price for win at Wigan

Sky Bet Championship
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Bristol City were handed a harsh lesson by West Brom's quality forwards on Tuesday but the otherwise rampant Robins can bounce back with a positive result at Wigan.

Both sides have started the Sky Bet Championship campaign in reasonable fashion with City in fifth and Wigan eighth but there may be more chance of the visitors being able to keep up that pace.

Only Brentford, Leeds and West Brom have scored more goals than Bristol City's tally of 14 and their two losses this season have come against high-class opponents in Middlesbrough and West Brom.

The Baggies' front three of Harvey Barnes, Dwight Gayle and Jay Rodriguez settled Tuesday's trip to the Hawthorns, but City are unlikely to face that kind of quality on a regular basis in the Championship.

Prior to that they had won four in a row, beating QPR (3-0), Swansea (1-0), Blackburn (4-1) and Sheffield United (1-0).

Lee Johnson's side racked up 11 shots on target in the win over Blackburn, conceding only two efforts, and a strong United side managed just one attempt at Niki Maenpaa's goal.

That suggests West Brom's four-goal haul had more to do with their individual talent rather than an issue with City.

Little wonder then that Wigan boss Paul Cook was full of praise for the opposition and told the club's official website: "They've got an excellent young manager, the team is very good and they have an energy about them that means our hands will be full."

Wigan themselves are a side who deserve respect.

Athletic were above the normal standard of League One champions and are comfortably holding their own in the higher division following Tuesday's 2-1 victory over Hull.

However, Hull switched formation and made five changes so it was by no means the strongest Tigers team available and Cook says there are injuries to his side following the quick turnaround.

"We'll have players missing," he said, "but I won't got into that in too much depth. Tuesday night has taken its toll on a couple of the lads."

If Wigan are not at full tilt – Michael Jacobs is one who may not be able to play again after just returning from injury – they could struggle to justify a short price and City appeal on the Asian handicap where even a draw returns a profit.

Bristol City +0.25 on Asian handicap

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Match in Focus


Ireland v Wales

Home WinDrawAway Win
Key stats
  • Ireland have won one of their last eight matches.
Expert verdict
Ireland were held to a dull 0-0 draw by a Denmark team missing Christian Eriksen on Saturday and may suffer another stalemate against Wales in Dublin. Only a victory would breathe life into Ireland's hopes of winning League B, Group 4 but they are hard to fancy, having failed of win any of their last four competitive games.