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The Championship Outright Predictions, Tips & Offers

Brett Curtis /
championship

The Championship kicks-off with Huddersfield hosting Burnley on Friday 29th July, and here at BettingPro we will be providing a few angles on some of the outright betting markets in England's second tier ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.

What is Outright Betting?

Outright betting is betting on an event as a whole, with ante-post betting the process of betting on it prior to it beginning, sometimes weeks or months ahead.

This is a common method of betting as it can frequently aid bettors in gaining an edge on the market, rather than missing out as the odds diminish alongside a prediction potentially coming truer as the season ensues.

However, one of the cons of outright betting is that so many unexpected events can occur during a season, including change of managers, transfers and injuries. Potential cash out offers are always worth keeping an eye on for this reason.

In football, there are several markets in dozens of divisions across the world available for outright betting, with Outright Winner, Top Goalscorer and Outright Relegation three of the most popular ones.

Most bookmakers provide the function to build accumulators, too, for example predicting the winners of the Championship, League One and League Two as a treble, substantially increasing the odds on offer as a result.

Bookmakers such as Sky Bet also often offer outright Request-A-Bets, which allow you to combine different predictions into a single bet for potentially massive odds, for example West Brom to win the Championship, Millwall to finish inside the top six and Blackpool to be relegated.

Without further ado, then, let’s delve into the Championship ahead of the 2022/23 campaign, analysing which teams and players may be over-rated or under-rated and how we may be able to beat the bookmakers.

Winner

As is usually the case with the Championship, the three relegated teams front the betting in this market, with Norwich marginally preferred to Watford and Burnley.

The Canaries certainly look the most settled of the trio having kept faith in Dean Smith while so far managing to avoid losing any key players, adding Isaac Hayden and Gabriel Sara to improve their midfield ranks.

Watford, it has to be said, appear to have the strongest squad on paper but it remains to be seen whether Ismaila Sarr and Emmanuel Dennis will remain at Vicarage Road beyond the transfer window, and how Rob Edwards will fare as a manager at this level after his heroics with Forest Green in League Two.

Likewise, Vincent Kompany is still untested as a manager and has a mass squad overhaul to contend with. Only Luke McNally from Oxford has replaced James Tarkowski, Ben Mee and Nathan Collins at the back so far, with Maxwell Cornet and Dwight McNeil unlikely to remain at Turf Moor beyond the transfer window.

Norwich, with Teemu Pukki a near certainty to score twenty-plus goals at this level and a raft of talented attacking midfielders supporting the Finn, are the safe bet and rightful favourites at 11/2 (bet365).

I landed a 10/1 winner with Bournemouth last season after putting faith in Scott Parker but it’s tougher this season to find a double-figure selection.

Middlesbrough and Sheffield United are best odds of 9/1 and 10/1 respectively with those bookmakers offering each-way selections and while I expect both to compete in the play-off places, I’m not convinced they have enough quality at the time of writing to push for the title.

A quality striker for Chris Wilder’s Boro could change that but until that happens I can’t bring myself to back them.

West Brom, meanwhile, have added Jed Wallace and John Swift to their ranks and will expect to challenge but I’ve got serious doubts about Steve Bruce these days especially after failing to make an impact last season.

Burnley do still have plenty of quality, and they were by far the best of the three relegated sides last season, finishing on 35 points after demonstrating instant improvement under caretaker manager Michael Jackson following his attempt to improve the playing style.

Kompany, you would expect, has been brought in to implement of a similar style after his many years at Manchester City. The Belgian is an admirable man who should command respect from his players.

Scott Twine bagged 23 goals and 13 assists for MK Dons in League One last season and is an interesting addition, while Ian Maatsen is a promising left-back or left-winger after an excellent loan spell at Coventry last season.

They’ll need central defenders and wingers to replace the departed but Arijanet Muric should be a capable replacement for Nick Pope at this level and there’s still bags of quality and experience in central midfield and attack.

At 12/1 (bet365), with a decent mix of technical quality and grit, the Clarets look to offer the best value on the market to me.  The gap between the Premier League and Championship has never been wider and I think the bookmakers may be underestimating this.

Relegation

Promoted Rotherham are the bookmakers’ favourites to bounce straight back down to League One and frankly I can’t disagree.

The Robins’ recent seasons under manager Paul Warne read: relegated from Championship, promoted from League One, relegated from Championship, promoted from League One, relegated from Championship, promoted from League One.

Like Fulham and Norwich at a level above, Rotherham are the ultimate yo-yo club, and the losses of Michael Smith and Freddie Ladapo to League One sides Sheffield Wednesday and Ipswich will not help their cause at bucking this trend.

It’s impossible to imagine Tom Eaves and Conor Washington replacing the void of a duo which scored 30 league goals between them last season.

They’ll give it a good fight but, in a competitive division, I’m surprised they’re as big as 6/4 (Sky Bet) to be honest and that has to be gobbled up as far as I’m concerned.

Reading and Birmingham are close behind them in the relegation market having suffered hugely downward trajectories in recent seasons and they do look set for tough campaigns for sure.

Wigan haven’t added to their squad as much as expected and will almost certainly be down there, while Blackpool will struggle to replicate last season’s over-performance after losing manager Neil Critchley to Aston Villa.

However, I’m looking for a bigger price and Huddersfield fit the bill in this regard.

Manager Carlos Corberan has departed the club after last season’s agonising play-off final defeat to Nottingham Forest, with Lewis O’Brien and Harry Toffolo following him out of the door, to the City Ground no less.

The Terriers massively overachieved with a limited squad and budget last season and I think they could be set for a relegation battle this season. 8/1 (QuinnBet) is far too big on the off chance they do a Barnsley in following up a surprise play-off appearance with relegation.

Top Goalscorer

I landed a 22/1 each-way with Dominic Solanke in this market last season after the Bournemouth forward bagged 29 goals and we’re looking for similar success this time around.

Pukki is where the safe money will be going and I can’t dissuade anyone from backing him at 8/1 (bet365). The Finland hitman bagged 11 goals in both of his Premier League campaigns, scoring 55 goals in 84 Championship games either side of them.

Providing he stays fit, it would take a serious loss of form for him not to finish in the top four places at the very least.

Karlan Grant is a forward I like a lot at this level and he seems to be thriving in an inside-left role at West Brom.

The former Huddersfield striker is on penalty duties at the Hawthorns and I think he can bag more than the tally of 18 he struck last season. He’s a solid each way bet at 16/1 (Paddy Power).

At a huge price, Hull’s recent signing Oscar Estpuninan offers significant interest.

The Tigers are embarking on a new era under Turkish media mogul Acun Ilicali, with Estupinan representing a serious coup after scoring 15 goals in the Portuguese Primeira Liga for Vitoria de Guimaraes last season.

The Colombian looks equally capable on the ground or in the air and at 66/1 (bet365) is surely worth an each-way punt.

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