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Coventry v Birmingham Tips: Home and away, tight affair anticipated at St. Andrew's

Coventry v Birmingham Tips: Jutkiewicz averages the most fouls p.g in the Championship
Coventry v Birmingham Tips: Jutkiewicz averages the most fouls p.g in the Championship

Birmingham make the short journey to the away changing rooms in their home ground for this fixture at St. Andrew’s, as they are the visitors against West Midlands rivals Coventry in their own stadium due to the two sides currently ground-sharing. Still with me?

Both teams are struggling this time out, with Coventry sat just one point above the drop zone, two ahead of rock-bottom Derby after four defeats in their last five games. Birmingham aren’t faring much better, sitting 17th heading into this one, five points ahead of their counterparts but they would, however, move into 12th with a victory here even if it was just for one night only. 

The Blues will be without the injured Jack Salter-Clarke, Adam Clayton, Jach Jeacock and Josh McEachran for this Friday night showdown, while Coventry are missing Daniel Barlett, Fankaty Dabo, Jodi Jones and Jordan Shipley through injury. 

The odds suggest this game will be a tight one, with Birmingham the narrow favourites at 8/5 - an implied chance of 38%. Coventry, meanwhile, are being given a 36% chance of obtaining three points with their odds of 7/4.

My three football betting tips for the game, which kicks off at 7:45pm and will be shown live on Sky Sports, can be found listed below. Please remember to gamble responsibly. 

Championship betting

These two sides sit second and third respectively in the Championship’s BTTS chart this season, with seven of Coventry’s 11 matches resulting in both sides finding the net, and six of Birmingham’s 11 doing the same. 

With home advantage ruled out due to the ground-sharing situation, theoretically neither side should have an upper hand here which leads me to believe that this will be a tight match won and lost by fine margins. 

Coventry have conceded 13 goals in their last five games and have the worst defensive record in the second tier having shipped 23 goals in 11 matches. I can’t see them keeping a clean sheet, but do fancy their chances of scoring at the other end of the pitch with the likes of Matt Godden to rely on in the final third.

I’m doubling this bet up with Birmingham’s Jeremie Bela to have 1 or more SoT. The 27-year-old has registered nine shots on target so far this season and always looks to get shots off at goal whenever he’s presented with half an opportunity. 

Championship outright betting

Lukas Jutkiewicz may only have one yellow card to his name this season but having a look into his stats and the Blues front man is actually the highest offender for fouls against in the Championship this season. 

Jutkiewicz is averaging 3.1 fouls per game and frequently gets away with his name being taken, however in a televised Midlands derby with emotions running high, I think he is just one silly foul away from picking up his second booking of the campaign. 

The 31-year-old’s only yellow so far also came in Birmingham’s last game against Bournemouth, so he’s got previous in recent games. The 13/2 on offer here from bet365 is simply too big to turn down in my opinion, let’s hope he doesn’t disappoint us! 

Finally a bet at a bigger price for the optimists among us, priced at an appetising 29/1 with Paddy Power. 

Godden missed Cov’s last match against Watford through injury but is expected to return for this one and should be chomping at the bit to find the net. The 29-year-old is undoubtedly the biggest goalscoring threat for the ‘hosts’ having netted four goals in 10 appearances this time out.

Godden’s SoT stats are really impressive, too; the Englishman has registered 11 on target in 20/21 which sees him rank among the top 10 players in the division. I can see him testing Birmingham keeper Neil Etheridge and wouldn’t be at all surprised to see him add to his impressive SoT tally for the season on Friday evening. 

Next up is Coventry’s notorious bad boy Gustavo Hamer, who has picked up three yellows in eight appearances for the Sky Blues this term and gives away on average 2.8 fouls per game - the second-highest out of any player in the Championship. 

In an intense game where midfield battles could be the difference, I’m envisaging plenty of strong challenges and if that does prove to be the case then Hamer should be primed for his fourth booking of the campaign. 

The same can be said for Birmingham City's yellow card machine Ivan Sunjic, who has picked up five yellow so far this season - more than any player in the whole division. The tough-tackling Croatian missed the Blues' last game against Bournemouth through suspension after picking up his fifth booking of the campaign against Wycombe the week before, and I can see him diving straight back into the ref's notepad at St. Andrew's

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