It’s advantage Derby in the Championship play-offs after Steve McClaren’s Rams edged past Brighton in their semi-final first leg at the Amex, so attentions now turn to QPR’s trip up north to face Wigan.
Uwe Rosler’s hosts are 11/10 to win, with Harry Redknapp’s side 23/10 to take an advantage back to Loftus Road and the draw also 23/10, but we’ve picked out three value punts for your betting pleasure when two of last season’s Premier League relegatees lock horns.
Under 2.5 goals @ 8/13
Championship play-off semi-final first legs tend to be ultra-cagey affairs and Derby’s 2-1 win over Brighton was the first time over 2.5 goals have been scored in such a match since Blackpool’s win over Nottingham Forest by the same scoreline, back in 2010.
The two matches featuring these teams on the final day of the regular season may have seen a whopping 12 goals scored, but the Latics were facing a Blackburn side needing a massive goal-swing in their favour to make the play-offs, while Redknapp’s men had nothing to play for against already-relegated Barnsley.
Only two of Wigan and QPR’s last eight combined fixtures saw three or more efforts hit the back of the net and considering just one goal separated them over 180 minutes home and away this term, this bet screams value.
Half-time Draw/Full-time QPR @ 27/4
Wigan have gone into the break with a lead just once in their last four outings, while QPR finished three of their last four first-45s all square, with the exception being the aforementioned goal-fest at Oakwell.
Redknapp’s charges closed out the campaign in much the better form, taking seven points from their last four games compared to their next opponents’ three, so they get the nod to do the business post-pie.
Wigan to receive more yellow cards than QPR @ 2/1
The R’s are warm favourites at 87/100 to pick up more cautions than Uwe Rosler’s outfit – while both teams receiving an equal number of bookings is the outsider at 31/10 – and this seems to be based on the west Londoners’ spiky recent clash with champions Leicester, when on-loan left-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto was forced to take an early bath for seeing yellow twice.
However, over their respective last five fixtures, Wigan have picked up seven bookings to QPR’s six – which includes four in their 2-0 loss at Burnley – so the 2/1 on Rosler’s men in this market seems somewhat overpriced.