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Match Previews

Sky Bet Championship midweek preview

21 October 2014

We look ahead to the midweek action in the Sky Bet Championship.

Tuesday 21st October 2014

Blackburn Rovers v Birmingham City

Rovers (13th – 16 points): Held in-form Ipswich Town to a 1-1 draw at Portman Road on Saturday, but are now without a victory in four league games. Their last triumph came in a 1-0 win over Fulham over a month ago.  Defender Matt Kilgallon is suspended.

The Blues (21st – 11 points): Lost at home again at the weekend, 1-0 to Bolton, which means they’ve picked up just one victory at St Andrew’s in 24 matches. They parted company with manager Lee Clark and assistant Steve Watson on Monday, so caretakers Richard Beale and Malcolm Crosby will be in charge for the game at Ewood Park.

Goals expected: In the 117 meetings in all competitions between these two teams, only once has the game ended goalless.

Blackpool v Derby County

The Tangerines (24th – 6 points): Failed to build on their first win of the season against Cardiff by losing 4-2 to Huddersfield three days ago. Saturday did see them net twice in a game for the first time this season however, with Tony McMahon and Donervon Daniels getting on the scoresheet.

The Rams (2nd – 23 points): Recorded a convincing 3-0 win away to Reading at the weekend, stretching their unbeaten run to nine games in the league. Moved into the automatic promotion places for the first time this season following that victory, and are set to start Jack Butland in goal at Bloomfield Road after his arrival on loan from Stoke City.

Ram Raid: Derby have won five of their last six meetings with Blackpool, with their only loss in that time coming in a 2-1 defeat on the seaside last term.

Bournemouth v Reading

The Cherries (9th – 18 points): Inflicted a first defeat of the season on Charlton Athletic in their last outing, to record back-to-back wins. Should results go their way in midweek, they could find themselves in the Play-Off places with a victory against Reading.

The Royals (16th – 15 points): Were easily dispatched by the high-flying Derby County at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday, despite having more shots on target than the Rams. Having recorded three straight wins in the league last month, Nigel Adkins’ men are now without a win in five Championship matches.

All to play for: These sides have both won 42 games against each other, and have shared the points on 24 occasions. 

Brentford v Sheffield Wednesday

The Bees (10th – 18 points): Were held to a stalemate by Wigan last time out to halt their surge towards the Play-Off places. They are just two points outside the top six and have won three of their most recent four at home.

The Owls (11th – 17 points): Lost 3-0 at home to league leaders Watford at the weekend, extending their winless run in all competitions to five. They have a good record at Brentford, though, losing only once at Griffin Park in eight visits since 1979.

Nothing to separate: Brentford and Sheffield Wednesday have recorded nine wins against each other in all competitions, drawing 12 times.

Cardiff City v Ipswich Town

The Bluebirds (12th – 16 points): Handed Nottingham Forest their first league defeat of the season at the weekend in Russell Slade's first game in charge. That was their fourth win of the season, with all four of those coming at the Cardiff City Stadium.

The Tractor Boys (6th – 20 points): Four wins in a row throughout September has been followed up by three consecutive draws for Ipswich, with the latest coming at home to Blackburn on Saturday, when they were denied three points by a stoppage-time leveller from Rovers. They've drawn four of their six away games so far.

Charlton Athletic v Bolton Wanderers

The Addicks (8th – 19 points): Following a fantastic run of 11 games without defeat, Charlton were finally beaten at the weekend, 1-0  at Bournemouth. Top-scorer Igor Vetokele will miss out through injury after he was substituted at half-time on the South Coast on Saturday.

The Trotters (23rd – 8 points): New manager Neil Lennon got off to a winning start, watching his side beat Birmingham 1-0 last time out. They've lost five of their six games on the road, scoring just twice in those matches.

Stalemate: Last season's two clashes between these sides both ended as draws, with a 1-1 scoreline at the Macron Stadium and a goalless affair at The Valley.

Huddersfield Town v Brighton & Hove Albion

The Terriers (17th – 15 points): Recorded their third win in four matches on Saturday, triumphing 4-2 against     Blackpool. They're picking up momentum under Chris Powell and another win could take them into the top half.

The Seagulls (20th – 11 points): Lost 2-1 to Middlesbrough at the weekend to continue a miserable run of eight games without a victory. They now sit just one point above the relegation places, having gone almost two months without a Championship win.

Norwich City v Leeds United

The Canaries (4th - 21 points): Were beaten 1-0 by the struggling Fulham in their last fixture, surrendering the lead at the summit in the process. They're now without a win in their last three, and have scored just once in that time.

The Whites (14th – 15 points): A 2-1 defeat to Rotherham on Friday night means manager Darko Milanic is still searching for his first three points at the helm of Leeds. Their last four fixtures have brought a return of just two points, with their most recent victory coming in a 3-0 win over Huddersfield over a month ago.

Rotherham United v Fulham

The Millers (15th – 15 points): The 2-1 win over Leeds at the weekend stretched Rotherham's unbeaten run to three. They've collected double the amount of points at the New York Stadium than on their travels this term, winning three of six at home.

The Cottagers (22nd – 10 points): Their victory against Norwich on Saturday was Fulham’s third win in four matches. The club are yet to appoint a permanent manager, so remain under caretaker Kit Symons, who has impressed so far. They've lost five of six on the road, however, conceding a league-worst 18 goals.

Reunited: This will be the first clash between Rotherham and Fulham since April 1994, when they met in a Division Two encounter.

Watford v Nottingham Forest

The Hornets (1st – 24 points): A 3-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday saw Watford reach the summit of the Championship table at the weekend. They've won four of six at home, drawing the other two – a league-best home run - and that has been key to their success so far.

Forest (5th – 21 points): Lost their first game of the season at the weekend, falling 2-1 to Cardiff City. That defeat followed four consecutive draws, in which they found the net only twice. Stuart Pearce is without midfielder Henri Lansbury through suspension so Ben Osborn or David Vaughan will deputise.

Wigan Athletic v Millwall

The Latics (19th – 11 points): Drew 0-0 with Brentford last time out to make it seven games without a league victory. They possess the joint-worst away record in the division, not winning in six. Captain Emmerson Boyce remains sidelined following a leg injury that he picked up last month.

The Lions (18th – 13 points): Recovered from a 3-0 deficit to draw 3-3 with Wolves on Saturday. They too have gone seven games without a victory, though. Defender Andy Wilkinson has arrived on loan from Stoke City.

Double trouble: Millwall did the double over Wigan last season, after the Latics achieved the same feat when they were last in the same division, in 2004/05.

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Middlesbrough

Wolves (7th – 20 points): That 3-3 draw with Millwall saw Wolves squander the chance to enter the Play-Off places. Despite dropping points in their last two home fixtures, their form at Molineux has been strong, registering 13 points from a possible 18.

Boro (3rd – 23 points): Their 2-1 win over Brighton on Saturday was their fifth victory in seven games in the Championship, meaning they now sit just a point off the top. Aitor Karanka was named Manager of the Week in The Football League after their latest triumph.

Fortress: Wolves have not lost to Middlesbrough in the league at Molineux since February 1995, with Boro’s only recent victory there coming in the FA Cup five years ago. 

All games are 7.45pm kick-offs unless stated.

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