Ollie's predictions: QPR to draw at Brentford, wins for Brighton and Preston
Last Updated: 31/10/15 7:31am
Sky Sports pundit Ian Holloway predicts the outcome of the big Football League fixtures this weekend.....
Leeds United v Blackburn, Thursday 7.45pm
Steve Evans will really get into his side for this one and I think they will just edge it in his first home game in charge.
Short-term it may work for Leeds, but long-term? No chance. All this chopping and changing managers like you change suits is a waste of time. It never works. How can a manager get a message across to his players about playing for a magnificent club like Leeds United when he's only going to have two months in charge? It doesn't make sense.
The difficult thing for Gary Bowyer at Blackburn is that he's got a transfer embargo on him. The club is moving backwards in terms of wages and I felt for him last weekend as his team played really well. The difference last week was Scott Arfield took his chance for Burnley as he's an experienced player while young Tom Lawrence missed his, but he's learning.
OLLIE PREDICTS: 1-0
Brentford v QPR, Friday 7.45pm (live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 7.15pm)
I played for both these west London clubs. I was once voted the second worst Brentford player of the decade. I was devastated. Why wasn't I the worst? If you're going to get an accolade, it's better to win it rather than be runner-up! Such is life.
I took great pleasure in beating them when I was QPR manager. In fact, I was unbeaten in six matches. Marc Bircham scored the winner for us at Griffin Park in 2003. What a volley. Get in! We had a great bunch of players then who knew what it meant to play for the QPR badge. People like Birch summed that up.
Recently, they've had a terrible record in London derbies as they've had a few overpaid nuggets that didn't want to run about. Thankfully, those days are gone under Les Ferdinand and Chris Ramsey. People like Matt Phillips and Charlie Austin care. I can see their desire to do well. Whether that'll be enough to beat Brentford, who are on a good run, I'm not sure. Alan Judge is bang in form and that's why I'm tipping the draw. He's good for a goal.
Birmingham v Wolves, Saturday 12.30pm (live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 12pm)
It's amazing what Gary Rowett has done. I love the geezer. To do what he's done with the same squad as what he inherited is amazing. With this being a derby game the edge is with the home side. The fans at Birmingham are right on side with what the club are building. Clayton Donaldson is a right handful and the makeshift Wolves defence will struggle to keep him quiet.
Wolves are ravaged by injuries and you don't want to be going into a derby like this with half your team missing. It's difficult for Kenny Jackett at the moment. I believe he's a great manager and their poor form is down to their injuries rather than what Kenny is doing.
Preston v Bolton, Saturday 6.00pm (live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 5.30pm)
I think Bolton's misery will continue. At home the Preston fans can really make a difference. I took Blackpool there and the atmosphere can get very fierce and hostile. That's what they'll do to Bolton, who won't be in a good frame of mind at the moment. Neil Lennon can't catch a break. He sends Liam Trotter on loan to Nottingham Forest and he scores on his debut! It's a nightmare, but that can happen in management.
I'm waiting for Joe Garner to get among the goals and I think he'll score this week. He's missing Jermaine Beckford but it's only a matter of time before he starts scoring. He's very Jamie Vardy-like as he's an all action centre-forward. I've got a lot of time for him.
Bristol City v Fulham, Saturday 3pm
I'm very proud about the way Steve Cotterill has got Bristol City playing. They should have beaten Cardiff on Monday - they stopped them playing and had more shots on goal. Steve has given them an identity. They are only a couple of wins away from surprising everybody. Once their players believe that they can consistently win games at this level, then they'll be a force.
Fuham are the hardest team to predict in the division. But that's what happens when you fill your team with youth team players. It's a big ask to win games in the Championship with kids - albeit talented kids.
Derby v Rotherham, Saturday 3pm
Derby's form is scary for everyone else in the league. They are on a roll now and some of their injured lads are coming back to fitness. but I'm not surprised as everything is set up there for the club to have a huge season. This looks a bit of a banker and I can't even see Rotherham scoring. Derby to win to nil and Chris Martin to get the first goal.
Middlesbrough v Charlton, Saturday 3pm
This could be a walloping. You couldn't have wished for a tougher game if you were Charlton, who sacked Guy Luzon last weekend.
Everyone will have their own ideas about whether to change a manager, but having been one, I can tell you, it doesn't work. You've got to stick together and get the players to buy into what you're doing. That takes time. How can you judge Luzon when he's not had a full team to pick from.
I remember at QPR I lost Danny Shittu and Bircham to injuries at the start of the season and I went six games without a win. People were talking about sacking me and I went mental at the chairman Gianni Paladini as no-one had seen my team yet. We won the next seven games. If you lose important players to injury, you're going to lose games and Luzon had to deal with that. It's harsh on him.
Reading v Brighton, Saturday 3pm
Brighton's unbeaten run will... continue. My Crystal Palace friends won't like me saying this, but Brighton are here to stay at the top end of the league. It worried me to see Reading concede four goals so tamely at Fulham last week and that gives the edge to Brighton.
Every game they have won this season in the league has only been by one goal but they are so solid. Chris Hughton is a fantastic manager. He makes everyone feel so calm and that's why they're in such good form. Everyone knows their job, including Tomer Hemed, who has been the signing of the summer. He does so much work for the team.
Walsall v Gillingham, League One, Saturday 3pm
I've changed my mind so many times on this one. I had it 2-2, then I changed last minute to 2-1. Gillingham have been fantastic, but the Holloway-gut says Walsall will just nick it. The club is moving forward all the time and their stadium looks great. Dean Smith deserves a medal for the way he's got Walsall going.
Plymouth v Morecombe, League Two, Saturday 3pm
I wouldn't mind going to this one as both teams play some great stuff. Plymouth are apparently the most entertaining team in the Football League and are flying and the Green Army can roar them on to another home win. They don't like me much but I love their passion. It's a magnificent part of the world.
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