Watford will be looking to stretch their unbeaten streak at Vicarage Road to seven games when they face Preston North End on Saturday. Photo by @AndreGray (Twitter).
- Matchday 14 begins on Friday in the EFL Championship, with Brentford hosting Queens Park Rangers
- The remaining 11 fixtures are spread between Saturday and Sunday
- Get the full odds, preview, and best bets for three of the most intriguing clashes below
With a heavy slate of fixtures for all sides in England’s second-tier across the next month with an average of two games per week, we proceed with Round 14 in the Championship on Friday, just days after Matchday 13 wrapped up.
Norwich City remains at the top, just one point ahead of Bournemouth. Just six points separate eighth and first place, so it’s still very tight at the top end of the table.
EFL Championship Matchday 14 Odds
|Brentford vs Queens Park Rangers||-155||+290||+400|
|Reading vs Bristol City||+145||+230||+185|
|Birmingham vs Millwall||+200||+205||+150|
|Blackburn Rovers vs Barnsley||+100||+240||+275|
|Cardiff City vs Luton Town||-139||+250||+410|
|Derby County vs Wycombe Wanderers||-134||+270||+340|
|Huddersfield Town vs Middlesborough||+188||+215||+150|
|Norwich City vs Coventry City||-182||+325||+450|
|Rotherham United vs Bournemouth||+325||+250||-118|
|Sheffield Wednesday vs Stoke City||+175||+210||+165|
|Watford vs Preston North End||+100||+240||+275|
|Nottingham Forest vs Swansea City||+175||+220||+160|
Odds taken Nov 25 at DraftKings
Pick 1: Brentford vs Queens Park Rangers
Friday will see last year’s playoff finalists Brentford host Queens Park Rangers. The Bees head into this clash as favorites in the sportsbooks at -155 thanks to their recent form against QPR.
Brentford has won seven of their last nine outings against the Hoops while collecting victories in each of their last three meetings. They also haven’t lost in their last five games, but only collected three points in one of those clashes.
Despite just bagging two goals during this span, striker Ivan Toney has been clinical in the final third, scoring 11 times this term already. The Englishmen has also been directly involved in 16 goals across his last 11 home matches, dating back to last season with former side Peterborough.
QPR have struggled immensely when playing on Fridays, losing all but one of their last 19 matches. They’ve also conceded two or more goals against the Bees in their last nine meetings. On a more positive note though, Mark Warburton’s men have secured three victories in their last five appearances, losing just once and scoring nine times. They currently sit 13th in the table.
History is certainly on Brentford’s side here. Although in ninth place, just seven points separate them from table-toppers Norwich. Each team is coming off just two days of rest, so I actually expect this to be a hard-fought, gritty match. I think both sides will take away a point, with each scoring two goals.
Pick: Draw +290
Pick 2: Blackburn Rovers vs Barnsley
Blackburn Rovers welcome Barnsley to Ewood Park on Saturday, who are just two points behind them in the table. Tony Mowbray’s squad has been lethal in front of goal this term, bagging a league-best 25 goals. However, they sit in 12th spot.
Conceding hasn’t necessarily been an issue either, letting in just 15 goals. Blackburn has suffered numerous close defeats that have hurt them. Adam Armstrong leads the Championship with 12 goals to his name and has netted five times in as many appearances. They’ll be looking to turn the tables around against Barnsley though, who they’ve lost three of their last four domestic matches against.
Goals have been few and far between for Barnsley this season, netting just 14 times. Last time out, they suffered a 1-0 defeat by the hands of Brentford thanks to Ivan Toney’s second-half winner. Valerien Ismael’s side did register back-to-back 2-0 wins prior to Tuesday’s loss though and will be looking for a similar result against Blackburn.
Barnsley hasn’t been in great form away from home, but I like the idea of them finding a result here. Their recent success against Blackburn will give them tons of confidence heading into this clash, along with the fact they haven’t had any problems scoring in this matchup. I’m giving the visitors a one-goal victory.
Pick: Barnsley +275
2021 English Premier League Odds Tracker
Pick 3: Watford vs Preston North End
The Hornets will be looking to continue their perfect record at Vicarage Road, having gone unbeaten on home soil this term. After being relegated from the Premier League prior to this season, Vladimir Ivic’s squad is on the right track to returning back to the top flight, currently in fifth spot and just four points off league-leaders Norwich.
Watford has struggled in the final third though, scoring just over one goal per match. Troy Deeney and Glenn Murray both haven’t featured much, despite being proven finishers. However, they’re both getting older and play limited minutes these days. Ivic’s primary goal-getter has been Joao Pedro, who’s scored four times.
Defensively though, this side has been phenomenal, conceding just ten goals. Home form has been great, but they have let in seven of those goals at Vicarage Road in six games.
Despite their opponents sitting much higher than them in the standings, Preston will feel hopeful that a positive result is in the cards this weekend considering they’ve failed to lose in their last three meetings with Watford. They’ll be looking to bounce back after a disappointing 3-0 defeat to Blackburn on Tuesday on home turf.
However, they’ve fared much better away from Deepdale, going 4-1-1 on the road this term. Currently 16th in the table, a victory here could potentially move them up towards the middle of the pack, with minimal points separating them from tenth.
Watford has shown real quality at home this season and given their form, I don’t see them losing here. However, I do think Preston will give them a serious run for their money. I’m calling a slim one-goal victory for the hosts.
Pick: Watford +100
Quinn Allen is a sports journalist, with a background and education in broadcast journalism (BCIT ’17). He writes about European Football, Basketball, and Baseball for numerous sites across the globe.