It is not yet October, but Wigan Athletic seem to have hit the form they usually reserve for spring with back-to-back 4-1 away wins in the Capital One Cup, alongside a rare victory on the road in the Premier League.
The League Cup has also been the highlight of Sunderland’s season so far, with last Saturday marking the third Premier League game in a row they have thrown away leads and been forced to settle for a point.
Despite that, home advantage this weekend sees the Black Cats installed as 19/20 favourites in bwin’s 3Way football betting market, with a Wigan win at 14/5 and the draw at 12/5.
Opening the scoring hasn’t proved a problem for Sunderland this season, as they have broken the deadlock in their last five games and they’re 7/10 to continue that run.
Yet their sticking power is much more questionable, having systematically failed to convert half-time leads into three points, and a confident Wigan should deny them again.
The Latics are 27/2 to claim a draw after trailing at half-time and new customers backing this selection with the free £20 bet they receive when registering with bwin would win £290 if successful.
Elsewhere, Steven Fletcher has been at the heart of all Sunderland’s good work this season and he is 9/2 to open the scoring, though punters looking for an alternative source of home goals should also consider Stephane Sessegnon.
The Benin playmaker has failed to hit his usual heights so far this term but he scored against Wigan in both of his first two campaigns at the Stadium of Light and is 7/1 to open the home side’s account and his own for the season.
Fletcher’s near-goal-a-game record has still not proven enough to earn a league win for Martin O’Neill’s men, so lead-draw in the run of play offers good value at 17/5.
But all records are there to be broken and with Wigan losing over 75% of the games in which they fell behind last year, 11/5 for Sunderland to win to nil is also worth considering.
Yet for my money, this isn’t the fixture for Wigan to start slipping up and they looked primed to claim a precious point on Wearside – so get on the 12/5 draw and the associated punts mentioned earlier.
Recommended bet: Sunderland and Wigan to draw @ 12/5
Outside punt: Steven Fletcher to score first @ 9/2
Long shot: Sunderland/Draw in the half-time/full-time market @ 27/2
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