The final round of action in the English Football Championship takes place this weekend and, with the title race still undecided, the bookies are currently doing their best to break down the top games.
For anyone with an interest in the Football League's leading league (it's the top tier of the English League system as the Premier League is its own entity), 7 May should prove to be one of the most exciting days of the season.
Thanks to Burnley's two-point lead over Middlesbrough and Brighton, the title race is literally hanging in the balance. Although Burnley are currently perched atop of the league with 90 points, a slip on the final day at Charlton could undo all their hard work.
According to the odds from Ladbrokes Sports, Burnley are favourites for the title with odds of 1/7. However, with just two points in it and the possibility of anything happening on Saturday, odds of 15/2 for Middlesbrough and 12/1 for Brighton look extremely attractive.
Indeed, for the neutral observer, the final showdown should make for compelling viewing on Saturday, but for the canny punter this dynamic also means there's an opportunity to make some serious cash.
While it would be foolish to look too far beyond a Burnley side that's amassed 90 points and lost just five games this season, the relatively long odds on Middlesbrough and Brighton can't be ignored.
When you look at Brighton in particular, the team has lost the same amount of games as Burnley; what's interesting is that they have scored more goals (71 compared to 69).
Although this hasn't translated into a better goal difference, as Brighton have conceded 41 goals to Burnley's 35, it shows that The Seagulls are capable of finding the target.
Unfortunately for Middlesbrough and Brighton, their final push for the title will be against each other and it will be the former with the home advantage. Knowing that nothing less than a win will suffice, both teams will be going for broke while hoping that Burnley slip up at Charlton.
From an odds perspective, Bet365 Sports' odds makers have Middlesbrough as the 11/10 favourites heading into the match, while Coral Sports is offering odds of 12/5 on a Brighton win.
While the dynamics and odds currently favour Burnley, the 11 men on the field will certainly be feeling the pressure in the early offing. Of course, an early goal from Sean Dyche's men should settle nerves as they look to emulate Leicester City's recent Premier League victory.
Talking to the Guardian, Dyche explained that the current promotion push is the result of two years' planning. After winning promotion to the Premier League in 2014 but dropping back down to the Championship the following season, Dyche focused on filling gaps after losing players in key areas.
Being able to bounce back from the disappointment of relegation has made Burnley's current position even more impressive according to Dyche, but the journey isn't over yet. Although promotion is guaranteed, the same can't be said for Middlesbrough and Brighton.
Ladbrokes has set their promotion lines at 1/5 and 1/1 for Middlesbrough and Brighton respectively, which means both teams really do have everything to play for. This dynamic will almost certainly light a fire under both teams and that means Burnley can't afford to have an off day on 7th May.
Whether you're a neutral, a diehard fan or simply a football bettor, this Saturday's Championship action will be some of the most exciting in recent memory. Regardless of where your allegiance lies, check out the latest odds for up-to-the-minute insights from the final day of the Championship season at Ladbrokes Sports today!
This weekend sees the long-awaited unification fight between James DeGale and Badou Jack to determine who is top dog in boxing’s super-middleweight division. Will DeGale back up his claim for a "massi ... Read More
It remains something of a hidden gem in the football calendar, but the biennial African Cup of Nations should really be a fixture in any self-respecting punter’s almanac. Why? Because some of the worl ... Read More
The first Grand Slam tennis tournament of 2017 kicks off 'Down Under' as hundreds of tennis players descend upon Melbourne, determined to start the New Year with a bang. The local spectators will be r ... Read More
Reigning champions Alabama Crimson Tide have surged through the competition to win their place in the College Football Playoff National Championship. The team they beat to claim the 2015 title, the Un ... Read More
Romanian pop artist Nicole Cherry is scheduled to perform at halftime during the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championships at the Raymond James Stadium in Florida, but what everyone really ... Read More