This weekend sees the welcome return of football across the country, with Paolo di Canio’s Swindon Town looking to pick up an opening-day win after romping to the League Two title last term, while Bournemouth and Torquay United will be hoping to give Portsmouth and Fleetwood Town a dose of reality for the season ahead.
In the first of bwinbetting’s new ‘Playing Away’ series for the bottom two tiers in England, we will be offering up three away win tips that could provide some decent returns.
While each team should ideally be backed as a single bet, punters feeling some first-day luck heading their way can lump them together in a treble potentially worth over 27/1 (or a whopping £330.41 for anyone registering with bwin and using their free £20 bet).
With all the latest Capital One Cup action from midweek in mind, here’s why Swindon, Bournemouth and Torquay are the teams to watch this Saturday.
Swindon Town to beat Hartlepool @ 27/20
Hartlepool ended the season in wretched fashion with just one win in their final ten League One games. Their form at Victoria Park was particularly poor, notching just one victory in seven home league matches.
Things have also started badly this season, with a 5-0 defeat at the hands of Crewe Alexandra in the Capital One Cup.
In contrast, Swindon and manager Di Canio will be raring to go come Saturday following a classy 3-0 win over Championship club Brighton and Hove Albion in the cup this week.
With the teams heading in opposite directions, an away win for the Robins at 27/20 looks a good punt.
Bournemouth to beat Portsmouth @ 9/10
When Harry Redknapp and his Portsmouth players were lifting the FA Cup on a glorious afternoon at Wembley in May 2008, no-one could have envisaged that four years later, the club would be in League One and clinging on to their very existence by the thinnest of threads.
But that’s the situation facing the south-coast club as they prepare for life in the third tier with a tasty-looking local derby against Bournemouth. The plight of Pompey is a sad one, but with Liam Lawrence recently becoming the final senior player to be removed from the wage bill – guaranteeing them a stay of execution from their administrators – there is hope that they can finally start to move forward.
Boss Michael Appleton has recruited virtually an entire new squad this week – made up of unattached players joining on one-month loans – which is an improvement from his previous reliance upon scholars. However, it’s hard to envisage them all gelling in time to sufficiently worry the Cherries, who are 12/1 fifth-favourites to win League One and should begin their promotion push with three points.
Torquay to beat Fleetwood Town @ 27/10
Fleetwood Town may have earned promotion to League Two in scintillating style last season, but as many before them will no doubt testify, the jump to the professional leagues is a big one.
The Trawlermen didn’t end last season particularly well, with no wins in their final four league matches, and though they may be heartened by a narrow 1-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest in the cup, the visit of Torquay United could see them brought back down to earth.
Torquay, for their part, were unfortunate to miss out on promotion via the playoffs last season. The Gulls also had the second best away record in League Two, with 11 wins, four draws and just eight defeats and look a good bet to maintain that with an opening away win at Highbury Stadium.
New customers can register here to claim a free £20 bet or click here to see all our League One odds.
Follow us on Twitter @bwin