EFL Championship Betting Preview – Middlesbrough

Boro to sneak into the top six

Football Betting

EFL Championship Team Preview – Middlesbrough

Tony Pulis was sacked at the end of last season after Middlesbrough failed to reach the EFL Championship play-offs. The club quickly turned to former captain Jonathan Woodgate, who signed a three-year contract at the Riverside Stadium. Despite this being Woodgate’s first job, the Boro board will be demanding a top six finish this term. How will they fare in an incredibly competitive Championship?

Who will win the Championship Title 2019/20?

Team
Leeds 9/2 7/2 9/2
Fulham 8/1 8/1 8/1
Cardiff 10/1 10/1 10/1
West Brom 12/1 10/1 10/1
Middlesbrough 14/1 14/1 12/1
Stoke 12/1 12/1 12/1
Derby 16/1 14/1 14/1
Huddersfield 20/1 14/1 16/1
Brentford 12/1 14/1 14/1
Sheff Wed 20/1 16/1 18/1

* (Betting Odds were taken from Bet365, Betvictor & Ladbrokes on July 15th, 2019 at 13:30 p.m.)

Middlesbrough to win the Championship Title 2019/20 at Betvictor

Underachieving under Pulis

Having been relegated from the Premier League in the 2016-17 season, Middlesbrough appointed Garry Monk, who was tasked to get this big club back into the top flight at the first time of asking. The former Swansea City manager never settled at the Riverside Stadium and was subsequently replaced by Tony Pulis in December 2017.

Middlesbrough improved under Pulis, reaching the play-offs by finishing in fifth position. Unfortunately for them, Aston Villa got the better of them in the semi-finals.

 

Luton v Boro
Luton9/5
Boro33/20

Bet at 22Bet

 

This time last year, Middlesbrough were among the favourites to win the league. Despite spending plenty of time in and around the top six, the Teesside outfit missed out on a play-off berth in the end, finishing just a point outside in seventh. As a result, Pulis was sacked shortly after the season drew to a close.

The Welshman has been a top manager at this level as well as in the Premier League over the years, but for one reason or another, things did not go to plan for him during his time at the Riverside.

Will Woodgate be a hit with the Boro fans?

There will be plenty of optimism in Teesside following the arrival of Woodgate, who racked up over 100 Premier League appearances for the club during his days as a player. However, his appointment this summer will have no doubt divided opinion amongst the fans.

The 39-year-old hung up his boots in 2016 after a successful 18-year playing career. He featured for several big clubs along the way, including the likes of Real Madrid, Leeds United, Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur.

Boro chairman Steve Gibson obviously liked what he saw when interviewing the England defender, but Woodgate is unproven as a manager, with this being his first managerial job. Meanwhile, Robbie Keane has arrived as his number two.

Middlesbrough kick off the new Championship season with a trip to Kenilworth Road on August 2nd to take on last term’s EFL League One champions Luton Town. Will Woodgate get off to a winning start in Bedfordshire?

 

Key-Facts – Middlesbrough

  • Boro missed out on the play-offs by just one point last term
  • They won only ten of their 23 home games
  • Middlesbrough secured ten away wins in last season’s Championship

 

Arrivals & departures

Stewart Downing has left for Blackburn Rovers on a free transfer, while former UEFA Champions League winner John Obi Mikel has joined Downing out of the door at the Riverside.

There have not been many incomings this summer, with Tomas Mejias, a free transfer from Omonia Nicosia, being the only arrival at the time of writing. Will Woodgate bring anyone else in before Boro’s trip to Luton?

Can Boro make the top six?

Leeds, Fulham, Cardiff City and West Bromwich Albion are all ahead of Middlesbrough in the betting for the title. Boro have been priced at 14/1 with most major bookies, which is a very tempting offer. However, bet365’s 7/4 for a top six finish seems better value.

With several strong teams in this year’s Championship, Middlesbrough will do well to finish in the automatic spots. However, if you fancy them to do so, check out William Hill’s eye-opening price of 7/1. Meanwhile, you can get them at 4/1 to be promoted.

Middlesbrough Tips & Odds

To finish in the top six at 7/4
To be promoted at 4/1
* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on July 15th, 2019 at 13:30 p.m.)

Predicted finish

Making the play-offs will be number one priority for Woodgate and his men this season. Of course, that’s easier said than done, as there are so many standout clubs taking part this season. Boro were tipped for success last year but failed to reach the top six, which was a major blow for the club. bet365 are offering 7/4 for Middlesbrough to secure a top six finish, while they are priced at 4/1 for promotion. It will not be straightforward, but I’m backing Boro to sneak into the play-offs by finishing in sixth place this season.


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