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Will Villa & Leeds make most out of their leads? Get Championship playoff tips

Ben Darvill 13 May 2019
Tammy Abraham of Aston Villa (credit:Foto Olimpik/SIPA USA/PA Images)

Aston Villa and Leeds go into the second-legs of their Championship playoffs against West Brom and Derby respectively with one goal leads with both games still with everything to play for. Get Championship playoff second-leg betting tips.

West Brom vs Aston Villa (Tuesday, 20:00 BST)

What a match it was on Saturday as this derby provided yet another hugely entertaining, and volatile game of football. Dwight Gayle had given West Brom the lead in the 16th minute and, for all of Aston Villa’s huffing and puffing, they were unable to breach the Baggies’ defence for long swathes of times. However, Conor Hourihane came on and scored a 75th minute goal to get Villa back level before Tammy Abraham netted from the spot to give the home side a massive lead. Dwight Gayle then added insult to injury for the Baggies as he was sent off two minutes from time, and it means Villa now travel to the Hawthornes with a 2-1 lead.

Victory for Villa was a huge one as it was their first victory over West Brom this season following a 2-2 away draw and a 2-0 home defeat. The Baggies would have been clinging onto this before the game as they clearly held the mental advantage, but Villa’s awesome recent form saw the side excel in five second-half minutes as they netted twice to get in front. At home this year, West Brom have looked good, winning 12, drawing seven and losing just four times across the league season. Villa meanwhile have won nine on the road, drawing eight and losing six times. In their recent run, Villa have only lost one of their last 13 games which came against champions Norwich, while they have won their last five away games in a row. With this in mind, we think this one will be incredibly tight, with the two sides well-aware of how much is at stake in this one. Villa hold the advantage and, while we do not think they will look to sit on their lead, we do not think they will take a lot of risks. The Baggies meanwhile must win this game, but we think they are liable to being caught on the break. With this in mind, we are backing a draw in this one, with Villa knowing that anything but a West Brom win will see them into the playoff final. 

Leeds United vs Derby County (Wednesday, 19:45 BST)

Leeds were by far and away the better team in their playoff battle with Derby on Saturday as they left the iPro Stadium with a goal lead. Frank Lampard’s men looked to be well-placed before the game, but they failed to register a single shot on target throughout the game, while Leeds registered three shots on goal. Kemar Roofe continued his superb season by scoring in the 55th minute, and they are now very much in the driving seat going into the second-leg. 

This year, Leeds have enjoyed a very strong campaign at home, winning 14, drawing four and losing five times, although it should be noted that before their win over Derby in the first-leg, they had not won since April 13, with three losses and a draw in this time. Derby meanwhile have only won seven times on the road, drawing seven and losing nine times, although they, unlike Leeds, have been in good form of late, winning four of their last seven along with three draws, while they have only lost once in their last 12 matches. Leeds poor recent run along with the fact Derby have impressed means we are tempted to back the away side, but their exploits on the road have not been overly impressive, while Leeds hammered Derby 4-1 on the road during the regular season, while they also won 2-0 at Elland Road. With three wins in a row in the league and playoffs against Derby, we are backing Leeds to claim another win and to take their place in the playoff final. 

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