Watford vs Reading: Hornets Host Paul Ince's High-Flying Royals

Legs of football player with EFL ball

Saturday 10th September - 15:00

This weekend’s EFL Championship fixture list is full of intriguing contests, but chief among them would have to be the visit of in-form Reading to Watford’s Vicarage Road in what would certainly constitute a big test of their capabilities of retaining their push for an unlikely promotion to the Premier League.

Eight games into the season and some sides you’d expect to be flying high are putting together rather mediocre results while others, who might never have been part of your EFL Championship betting plans, may now be worth considering for a cheeky punt.

Steady Progress

It would be fair to say that Rob Edwards’ Watford side have had a steady, if not spectacular, start to the season, and they very much need a statement win over Reading (who currently sit in third place in the EFL Championship table). 

The Hornets have been struggling to find the back of the net, having managed just nine goals in their opening eight fixtures, and this may well be down to the fact that they lost the services of last season’s top-scorer Emmanuel Dennis to Nottingham Forest in mid-August. 

Edwards needs to get his side back into gear so that they don’t lose sight of the current front-runners. Watford were considered the favourites, along with Norwich City, to win the EFL Championship title but a run of just three wins from eight games isn’t great.

Though Edwards lost a number of big names over the summer, he is understandably very happy to retain both Joao Pedro and Ismaila Sarr;

“I’m delighted – really pleased to have them with us,” 

“Their commitment [to the club] has been evident when they’ve been on the pitch, and they’re going to really help the team.”

“I think it’ll give everyone a lift to know it’s done, and we can concentrate on going forward now.”

Indeed both players should be making a real impact in the Championship, but as yet, they’ve managed just four goals between them, a return that needs to be greatly improved upon so that draws can be converted into three-point hauls.

Reading Sticking With Leading Pack

Paul Ince would have been worried that his side’s thumping at the hands of Sheffield United might spark a run of poor form, but he would have been pleased that they immediately bounced back to secure a narrow win against Stoke City.

Now the former Manchester United midfielder will be looking to see his side build on their early season success and mount a bid to stay in or around the top six for as long as possible.

Ince has made good use of the last few days of the transfer window, signing Huddersfield defender Naby Sarr and bringing in Baba Rahman on another spell from Chelsea. The more depth the Reading boss can bring in, the better placed the club will be when it comes to managing the tiring schedule.

Best Bets

Joao Pedro to Score First and Watford to Win 3-0 - 40/1

We fancy Watford to ease past Reading, with Paul Ince’s side struggling when on the road, and a bet that combines Pedro netting first and the home side securing a 3-0 win seems strong to us. 

The bet from BoyleSports is a useful one to consider, as simply backing Watford to win wouldn’t net you much unless it was part of an extensive accumulator.