Championship action returns following the first international break of the season and it’s back with a bang tonight as Birmingham host West Midlands rivals West Brom at St Andrews (KO 19:45).
There should be a formidable atmosphere with local bragging rights at stake – this is a Midlands derby not to be missed.
This will be the first league meeting between the two sides since 2011 and it’s set to be an intriguing battle.
The hosts are still searching for their first win of the season with six games gone, which is starting to become a worry. Four draws is enough to keep Gary Monk’s side out of the bottom three, for now, but fans will surely be eager to finally get their season off to a start with those elusive three points.
Goals have been at a minimum for the Blues, finding the net just four times in six games so far this campaign.
Their opponents, West Brom have enjoyed a bright start to life in the Championship. They’ve bagged more goals than any other side in the league, averaging over 2.5 goals per game.
In fact the Baggies are 11/8 to score 2 or more against their rivals tonight which already looks a stand out bet.
Jay Rodriquez has bagged four goals already this season – yep that’s the same as the full Birmingham squad combined – and he’s 11/2 to score first which looks a pretty decent price.
The former Southampton man looks to have already set up a very handy partnership up front with another ex Premier League star in Dwight Gayle and these two look quality, with Gayle already proven his Championship scoring credentials with Newcastle.
The Baggies have won the last three meetings against Birmingham in all competitions and are a decent looking 6/5 to bag all three points and it would take a shrewd punter to back against them tonight.
No team has drawn more games than Birmingham in the Championship so far this season, with fans desperate for goal mouth action – two nil nil draws in in their last two at St Andrews is not exactly inspiring form and the Baggies could well take advantage with plenty of firepower up front.
The draw specialists are 12/5 to pick up another point but West Brom look to have too much quality in the final third – I’m backing them to take all three points tonight and heap further pressure on Gary Monk’s side.
Despite West Brom being in excellent form in front of goal Birmingham can make things difficult – West Brom to win and Under 2.5 goals is priced at 7/2 which looks plenty big enough.
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