EFL Championship Play-Offs: Huddersfield v Sheffield Wed Preview


Our English football scribe previews Sunday's first leg play-off tie between Huddersfield Town and Sheffield Wednesday.

The rather arduous process of finding out the identity of the third promoted side this season will see Huddersfield Town host the Owls at Kirklees on Sunday night. Huddersfield boss David Wagner had admitted during the week that his side are the underdogs on the basis of both recent form and head-to-head records between the sides. Carols Carvalhal’s side may be priced up as outsiders to win this game but, following a barnstorming end to the season that saw them win six out of their seven games with only defeat to Fulham with a vastly changed side blighting their run-in, they are being viewed as favourites by segments of the British press.

Huddersfield Town v Sheffield Wednesday | Sunday 14 May | Kirklees Stadium | 13:00

To Win (90 Mins)
Huddersfield 27/20 | Draw 21/20 | Sheffield Wednesday 43/20

Huddersfield Town
The Terriers will surely be the least ‘fashionable’ side going into this crucial stage of the season. They also lost three of their last four regular season matches. Added to that is the fact that they lost, at home, to the Owls in October. Huddersfield have also conceded at least two goals in their last three matches. Huddersfield will be without on-loan Liverpool keeper Danny Ward following a ludicrous handling error against Cardiff on Sunday. That will see 21-year-old keeper Joel Coleman come into the firing line this weekend.

So the prospect of the Owls finding joy on the road looks promising this weekend. Elias Kachunga returns to training following a calf injury and may be in contention to start this weekend. Midfielders Kasey Palmer and Phillip Billing will miss the play-offs, which will definitely impact the cohesion of the squad. Nakhi Wells will attempt to fill the void left by Kachunga while Parra and Scannell will attempt to provide width.

Sheffield Wednesday
Carlos Calvalhal’s side have far less pressing injury concerns, though striker Gary Hooper looks set to miss both legs due to injury. Furthermore, Marco Matias will be suspended for the first leg. Other than that, Calvalhal will have a full consortium of players to choose from.

Foresteri has been their top scorer in the league and will look to combine well with Scottish stalwart Stephen Fletcher. Fletcher is exactly the type of box style striker that every manager wants for these occasions.

Their real strength lies in the guise of Ross Wallace and Adam Reach. They provide width and ingenuity and have been the side’s chief source of assists throughout the year. Added to that is the tenacity of Bannan in the middle of the park. Looking throughout this Wednesday side, it is clear that there is far more tangible Premier League experience. Wednesday have been on a blistering run of form and had the opportunity to rest several key players at the weekend.

Verdict: Totals - Away Over 1.5 - 21/10 
Huddersfield’s leaky defence will be compounded by the suspension of Ward this weekend in goals. Wednesday have been fluid of late and will score crucial away goals this weekend.

Written by Damien Kayat @Hollywoodbets.

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