Derby v MK Dons, February 13, 3.00pm
This midlands clash will see MK Dons travel to Derby on Saturday Afternoon. The Dons are the biggest outsider price in the Championship this weekend and can be backed at 11/2. Derby, who have recently became manager-less are the odds on price of 8/15. The draw is available at 3/1. In the reverse fixture earlier this season Derby won in Milton Keynes, beating them 3-1.
There is a lot of debate as to whether Derby’s poor run of form justifies the sacking of Clement. Nevertheless the show must go on for Derby and there will be a lot of focus to see how the players react to new coaching staff and generally a new way of playing. They have been by no means dismal this season and are still in the play-off places despite a poor run of results recently. They are also still only six points off of top spot, and given the way the other teams at the top have been playing, it is not too farfetched to suggest that they can still win the league. This however does depend on a complete turn around in form – their last league win was on Boxing Day and have had heavy defeats to Birmingham and Burnley in the run. However the players will be keen to advertise their club to bring in a new manager, it will be interesting to see how they handle the game.
After a fairly weak month of January, MK Dons can be relatively happy with their opening games in February. A draw away to Cardiff is a very respectable results, but more impressively they managed a draw with title contenders Middlesborough and were unlucky not to win the game. Bowditch gave the Dons the lead in the 9th minute of the game. It stayed this way until the 93rd minute until Rhodes gave Middlesborough the equaliser and the points were split. A tough pill to swallow but it will give the Dons hope going into this fixture. Given Derby’s form they will be hoping to exploit another team at the top of the table and try seal all three points this time out.
This game is a tough one to call because it is hard to know how the Derby players will react to their manager being sacked and whether MK Dons will play for the draw. I’m not backing either team to win but Ince has impressed me this season so far, so I’m backing him to get the first goal.
Ince to score first – 9/2