Derby County welcome Birmingham City in a Midlands derby on Saturday tea time and bwin has installed the home side as solid favourites to pick up all three points.
Nigel Clough’s men are rated at 23/20, while the draw is 9/4 and Blues are the same price to get the win, despite having enjoyed the upper hand in this fixture in recent years.
Birmingham have won six of the last ten meetings, compared to just one win for Derby, although that solitary victory did arrive in the corresponding fixture last season, when the Rams ran out 2-1 winners. Before that, City had won on four of their last five visits to Pride Park.
Derby have lost their last two Championship matches but both of those defeats came away from home against in-form teams, as a 2-1 reverse at Millwall was followed by a 3-0 loss to Crystal Palace, who are beating everything that is put in front of them at the moment.
On their own patch, the Rams are unbeaten in four matches, winning their last two (a thumping 4-1 success against Blackpool and a 2-0 triumph over Barnsley) and drawing two.
Three of Derby’s four home wins this season have come by two goals or more and you can bet on this happening again by backing Clough’s men to prevail despite giving Birmingham a one-goal headstart at 3/1.
In truth, Birmingham have struggled for any kind of consistency this season and their last three matches illustrate this perfectly. A 3-2 home defeat by Hull City followed a solid 1-1 draw at Blackburn Rovers, which in turn came after a 2-0 win against Bristol City.
Blues’ only defeat away from home in their last six matches came at high-flying Cardiff City and this run has included wins at Leeds United and Brighton & Hove Albion (both 1-0), plus a sterling comeback from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 with Millwall at The Den.
So with Derby looking strong at home and Birmingham posting some impressive results on the road of late, the best approach here from a betting perspective could be to take a chance on the draw.
Anyone joining bwin.com today can claim a free £20 bet and placing this on the spoils to be shared will pocket winnings of £65 if successful.
With that in mind, the 5/1 on a 1-1 draw, which has been the result in two of the last six matches between the sides at Pride Park, could also prove a profitable option for punters seeking a longer price for this clash.