Easter weekend serves up some cracking Championship action and Norwich, on course for an instant return to the Promised Land, are set to take it all in their stride.
Canaries Soaring High at the Summit
Just like two seasons ago, Norwich appear to be coasting towards the Championship title and thus another crack at Premier League football.
Many felt they underinvested last season and short-changed boss Daniel Farke as they tumbled out of the top flight with a whimper.
However, they kept hold of their best players and with a few clever additions, have run away with the division this season.
The 1-1 draw with Blackburn just under a fortnight ago ended a run of nine straight wins, but Norwich are 14 points above third-place Swansea with eight games remaining and look unstoppable in their pursuit of England’s top flight.
Their next assignment is a trip to Preston North End, whose season appears to be meandering towards the lower mid-table.
Before the international break, they parted company with boss Alex Neil after two years of steady decline.
A lack of investment and the sales of key players such as Ben Davies and Ben Pearson has led to them sliding away from playoff contention.
A Norwich win to nil, therefore, looks to be a solid choice at
Tykes to Continue Playoff Charge
It has been a remarkable season for Barnsley, who currently sit fifth in the Championship.
After narrowly avoiding the drop on the final day of last season, the Tykes started the new campaign poorly and boss Gerhard Struber decided to leave South Yorkshire for the bright lights of New York.
Unknown Frenchman Valerien Ismael was drafted in as his replacement and he has overseen a total transformation.
Before defeat at Sheffield Wednesday last time out, the Tykes had embarked on a 12-match unbeaten run, down in part to their high energy brand of football.
They take on Reading, who currently occupy the final play-off spot, next.
Veljko Paunovic has had a good first season in English football, though his side has tailed off slightly since their near-flawless beginning to the Championship campaign.
The two-week break for most of Barnsley’s players will have recharged the batteries and the
13/10 on offer for them to win looks good value.
Bowyer’s Blues to Stun Swans
Lee Bowyer’s appointment as Birmingham manager did seem an odd one on paper, given all the problems encountered by the club in recent years.
He’s got off to a reasonable start at his new club, winning his first game against Reading before losing to Watford.
A game against another top-six side might be the last thing he wants but Swansea are beginning to falter slightly in their pursuit of the top two.
A 3-0 loss at Bournemouth was followed up by a 1-0 loss at home to Welsh rivals Cardiff – a result which will surely hurt.
Birmingham have made a habit of beating teams near the top of the league this season – Brentford, Reading and Middlesbrough are among their scalps – and a backs to the wall style performance could see them over the line at
*All odds correct at time of writing