With the Championship’s top three sides all locked on 87 points, it’s Middlesbrough who have the chance to steal a march on promotion rivals Burnley and Brighton & Hove Albion tonight.
Aitor Karanka’s men looked hot favourites to clinch the Championship crown 10 days ago, but surrendered their lead at Turf Moor in injury time last Tuesday, before drawing 0-0 with mid-table Ipswich in a tepid game at the Riverside.
With Brighton on a five-game winning streak, and Burnley having taken 10 points from the last 12 available, it’s vital that Boro regain their ruthless streak.
The Teessiders did win six on the trot before these last two draws – and five of those by a single goal, and they need Jordan Rhodes to start scoring again.
He’s 10/3 to strike first in this one, and he netted on his last visit to St Andrews, as a Blackburn Rovers player.
Birmingham’s season has fizzled out somewhat, with Gary Rowett’s men failing to reach the play-offs, and winless in four.
Still, history is on their side in this clash. Boro haven’t won at St Andrews since 2005, losing three and drawing two of their visits in the last decade.
The north-east club are unlikely to lose this time around, though. With all the impetus being on the Teessiders, and a goal-shy Blues side up against the league’s meanest defence, it’s hard to see the home side outscoring their opposition.
A draw could represent the best value at 3/1, with both sides pocketing a share of the spoils from their last two games apiece.
Boro are certainly the better equipped of the two sides, and the more likely to secure a victory on the night. The Teesside club are 8/15 for victory, while you can back City at 11/2 to seriously spoil the visitors’ promotion push.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.