Our Sports Bet Tips & Betting Odds are always up to date. Get the best football tips here. League Cup, 1st round. League One against the Championship. Charlton can say they are quite satisfied with the opening, having picked up four points in the first two games. First held Accrington to 2 – 2 away, then one of the big promotion favourites, Derby, was sent home from The Valley with a 0-1 loss. Charlton was a huge disappointment last season, and what was hoped would be a new season in the upper tier, ended instead with a weak 13th place. Not good enough for the London team, who managed to lose as many as 9 at home at The Valley.
New manager in Ben Garner. He comes from a stint at Swindon, where he led the team to the playoffs before it crashed on penalties against Port Vale. That, together with a couple of solid signings who all seem to be well suited to the team’s new manager, has created some cautious optimism among the fans. Joe Wollacott (Swindon), Jack Payne (Swindon), Eoghan O’Connell (Tochdale) and Conor McGrandles (Lincoln) are among the players who have come in, and there have also been a number of names gone. In other words, we are talking about a relatively large renewal process under Garner, so it is natural to believe that it will take time before everything falls into place, but I think Charlton is moving towards better times, and does not ignore the fact that you can become a positive surprise if a couple of the new signings settle in quickly.
Queens Park Rangers put in an awkward performance as they lost 0-1 to Blackburn at Ewood Park in the opening round, but bounced back to score three goals at home to one of the big promotion favourites, Middlesbrough, on Saturday. Boro hit back twice but the visitors got no closer in what ended with a rousing 3-2 result for QPR. Had to endure a new season around the middle last time, with 11th place and 19 – 9 – 18. It could seem that they were about to play their way into the promotion battle after a great period in parts of December and January, but after that it went so mostly wrong. Ahead of this season, Michael Beale has been brought in as the new manager.
Coming from two stints as an assistant coach at Rangers and Aston Villa, he is an exciting but bold choice by the club, as he lacks experience as a head coach at this level. He takes over a squad that many believe should have performed considerably better under Warburton, and QPR have managed to keep the most important pieces, while bringing in a couple of new names, such as Kenneth Paal from PEC Swolle and Jake Clarke-Salter from Chelsea . It could be good if the club chooses to strengthen the squad further, but unless that happens, I fear QPR are heading for another season in no man’s land.
It is expected that Charlton will make at least eight changes to the team. A little more uncertainty about what QPR will do, but we would like to think there will be a number of changes for the visitors as well. QPR get a cautious tip: 2