With the large majority of the Championship having played 42 games, there's still a lot to be decided.
By Jamie Casey - Twitter: @skyjamiecasey
Last Updated: 16/04/13 5:53pm
With the large majority of the Championship having played 42 of 46 games, there's still an alarming amount to be decided, particularly at the lower end of the table.
Only Bristol City look a surefire bet for relegation, but Sky Bet are still taking bets on 10 teams believed to be in the scrap, with plenty of odds available to take advantage of before Tuesday's fixtures take their toll on the market.
What if...Wolves win against the odds?
At 8/11, Wolves are the shortest price to be relegated from the Championship, with Sky Bet having suspended betting on Bristol City, who will have demotion confirmed if they lose at home to Birmingham on Tuesday night. Wolves started the season as a 28/1 shot to suffer successive relegations having dropped out of the Premier League only last season, and Dean Saunders' task of keeping them afloat is not helped by the visit of promotion-chasing Hull. The second-placed Tigers are 1/16 to return to the top tier, but they'll not be taking the foot off the gas until automatic promotion is mathematically secured. They're 6/5 favourites for the win at Molineux, but a win for Wolves (23/10) may see their relegation odds go out from 8/11 to closer to evens, depending on results elsewhere.
What if...The Tykes drag the Rams back into it?
With 54 points on the board in 13th position, Derby are not available to back in Sky Bet's Championship relegation market. However, a win for Barnsley over the Rams will put just two points between the sides and surely force the bookmakers to reconsider Nigel Clough's men. The Tykes are odds-on (4/5) to go down on the back of their crushing 6-0 home defeat to Charlton last time out, but three of their eight home wins this season have come in their last four at Oakwell, making them 7/5 favourites to bounce back from the drubbing with a win over Derby (9/5), while the draw (12/5) would prove more beneficial to the visitors.
What if...Rovers out-fight timid Terriers?
With Blackburn benefitting from a game in hand, they're rated 9/2 to suffer a successive relegation, behind Wolves (8/11), Barnsley (4/5), Peterborough (15/8) and Tuesday night's opponents Huddersfield (9/4). Much like Wolves, Rovers were 50/1 to be relegated from the Championship at the start of the season and, remarkably, were as long as 125/1 in late February, but they've won just one of their last 10 league games. Perhaps crucially, that one win came last time out, as wobbling Derby went down 2-0, and Gary Bowyer's side are 6/5 favourites to make it two on the bounce, with the visitors 9/4 to come away with a win. The Terriers head into the game on the back of an away win at Wolves, so Mark Robins' men may be quietly confident of sealing the win that would give them breathing space at the back end of the table.
What if...Peterborough plunge?
At 15/8, Peterborough are probably the best value to go down ahead of Tuesday night's round of fixtures, and that assumption is reflected in the betting patterns as punters have been lining up to lump on Posh ahead of Brighton's visit to London Road. The Seagulls are unbeaten in their last five games and are 100/30 to gain promotion via the play-offs. Gus Poyet's men are 11/8 favourites for an away win and should Posh suffer defeat in conjunction with wins for Barnsley and Wolves, they'll be second from bottom, stuck on 50 points with just three to play. Thus, you can see the thinking behind backing them to go down. If they can pull off the win at 15/8, though, they could, if other results go their way, move level on points with Ipswich and Sheffield Wednesday, who are each 16/1 to slip out of the division.
What if...Austin finds form at Leeds?
Away from the depressing yet enthralling nature of relegation, there's still the matter of top scorer to be settled, with Charlie Austin running out of time to catch 29-goal Crystal Palace striker Glenn Murray. Burnley's Austin is four goals off the pace on 25, and will need a brace against Leeds, a 4/1 shot, if he's to have any hope of topping the charts. That's if Murray doesn't bag at Ipswich, where he's 11/10 to score anytime, with the former Brighton man 1/33 on to preserve his status at the top. Austin can still be backed at 16/1, and a hat-trick on Tuesday (20/1) would eat into those odds considerably.
Odds subject to change