Sports bettors have innumerable factors to evaluate when endeavouring to make well-informed decisions; amidst the abundance of EFL betting tips, enthusiasts can elevate their prediction strategy by remaining current with the latest developments. As the EFL 2023-2024 season unfolds, several teams have emerged as contenders for the championship, including Southampton, Leeds and Leicester; this article presents an overview of the current state of play in the EFL for bettors and fans.
Impressive beginnings for key contenders
Southampton, Leeds and Leicester have commenced the championship race with vigour. Initially, Southampton and Leeds shared the status of 8-1 third-favourites, setting the stage for a highly anticipated showdown at Elland Road as the regular season draws to a close. Meanwhile, Leicester, having descended from the EPL, carried the weight of 6-1 favouritism to secure the Championship.
Leicester commenced their season journey with a challenging face-off against Coventry, whilst the latter were defeated on penalties against Luton Town in the May playoff final. In parallel, Plymouth confronted Southampton, securing victory in an impressive 20 out of 23 home matches.
Leicester’s pulsating victory over Bristol City
Leicester secured a hard-fought win against Bristol City, propelling them to the top of the championship. Joining them were Leeds and Ipswich, both emerging victorious in their respective matches. Over in League One, Portsmouth claimed the top spot after their recent triumph, while Stevenage and Oxford also secured wins.
Leicester versus Bristol City was an intense game, culminating in a narrow 1-0 scoreline – Jamie Vardy sealed the victory with a penalty. Bristol City is now under the guidance of Nigel Pearson, who once held a significant role at Leicester, signing Jamie Vardy 11 years ago. Interestingly, it was Vardy’s penalty kick in the 67th minute that ultimately determined the outcome of the match.
Leicester’s dominance in the Championship
Preston enjoyed a consistent run of six consecutive victories; however, Rotherham successfully ended this. Jordan Hugill, once a Preston player, found the net for Rotherham; conversely, Hugill struck a late goal for Preston. The match ultimately ended in a draw, with both teams securing a solitary goal. As Preston surrendered their top position, Leicester topped the league table.
Just below Leicester, Ipswich secured an impressive 4-3 triumph at home against Blackburn; Massimo Luongo scored the decisive goal for Ipswich a mere 11 minutes before the final whistle. George Hirst, Nathan Broadhead and Harry Clarke had earlier given Ipswich the advantage in the early stages. However, Blackburn staged a determined comeback, with Amor Sigurdsson finding the back of the net. Szmodics and Clarke each scored once more, resulting in an exhilarating 3-3 draw.
Other noteworthy results
Despite languishing at the bottom of the table, Middlesbrough orchestrated a remarkable 2-1 comeback over Southampton. Adam Armstrong opened the scoring for Southampton but Riley McGree swiftly responded, restoring parity before halftime. Johnny Howson converted a penalty in the second half, sealing the win for Middlesbrough. Southampton’s clash with Middlesbrough marked their fourth consecutive defeat.
Plymouth delivered an impressive 6-2 victory in their match against Norwich; Morgan Whittaker showcased a hat-trick to propel Plymouth to victory. Plymouth’s other goal-scorers included Luke Cundle, Finn Azaz and Dan Scarr. Norwich managed to notch two goals in the second half but failed to close the gap.