An experienced Hull City team can claim victory in the Championship play-offs
Brighton & Hove Albion, Hull City, Derby County and Sheffield Wednesday are the four teams competing in the Sky Bet Championship play-offs, with the Seagulls the unfortunate side that narrowly missed out on automatic promotion.
Unfortunately for Chris Hughton’s side, that points advantage over the other three teams counts for little other than the fact that Brighton will play the second leg of their play-off semi-final at the AMEX Stadium.
It’s going to be tough for Hughton to motivate his players for a double header against Sheffield Wednesday, a side who claimed the final spot and come into the play-offs with less disappointment considering the play-offs has been an aim for nearly the whole season.
We think the winner will come from the other pair of teams and HULL CITY rate a decent bet at 9/4 considering that the Tigers have an experienced squad of players who have played Premier League football already.
Steve Bruce’s side looked like automatic promotion candidates a few weeks ago, although a loss of form saw them drop out of the running and they must now tackle Derby over two games before a potential Wembley showdown.
Bruce saw his Hull team beat Rotherham 5-1 last Saturday and that was a return to form at the right time for a Tigers side who can boast the dangerous Abel Hernandez in attack. In midfield, Tom Huddlestone will line up against his former club, while Jake Livermore, Mo Diamed and Robert Snodgrass can cause plenty of problems.
Derby have had a funny old season, with owner Mel Morris desperately throwing money at the cause and Darren Wassall remains in caretaker charge with Harry Redknapp as the silent director of football.
The squad is pretty decent at the iPro Stadium although whether team spirit is particularly strong is open to question. The Rams are also missing George Thorne who broke his shin last week against Ipswich.
We’re happy to back Hull to overcome County over two legs despite the fact that Derby enjoyed an aggregate 6-0 victory over the Tigers during the regular season.
Derby claimed a 2-0 win at the KC Stadium before shoeing their opponents 4-0 at the iPro although Hull will be a different proposition in the play-offs and that big game experience might help them over the line.