Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Boxing Day, Game 25

First of all, seasons greetings to you and I hope you and your families enjoy the break. The Addicks' chances of a profitable Christmas already look lost and the annual let-down is here again. Let's hope 2009 brings us more cheer - let's face it,  it would be hard to imagine a year worse than 2008.

Boxing Day looks like being unseasonally mild and I will be there for the 1pm encounter with QPR although I'm hardly excited about it. They weren't particularly impressive six games ago at their place but they had enough to saunter past us and I suspect they will take a least a point from this one. The fixtures aren't kind to us over the coming weekend, and whilst Doncaster might keep us off the bottom, the gap to safety only looks like increasing.

Burnley v Barnsley
Boxing Day has a habit of throwing surprises as sides under and over perform, often with strange team selections. However, I can't see beyond a home win here in this Yorks/Lancs encounter. Barnsley have done their hard work in the last couple of months and I suspect will have a day-off here.
Prediction; 3-0

Charlton Athletic v QPR
A game we should be looking to win but one, I suspect, we will be trying not to lose. A point will probably do Rangers as well although they might go for the win if we don't show some threat or come into this believing we are a pushover. Time is running out for Parkinson and he needs two wins in succession if the Board are to have the confidence and justification to extend his tenure until the end of the season. It's not going to happen.
Prediction; 1-1

Crystal Palace v Norwich City
The fixtures weren't falling for Palace earlier in the season but they certainly are now. Norwich will be easy-meat after Saturday.
Prediction; 3-0

Ipswich Town v Birmingham City
Alex McLeish will be looking for a reaction after being overhauled by Reading. My money's on Town to cheer their faithful and give Reading the edge in the automatic race in the process.
Prediction; 2-0

Nottingham Forest v Doncaster Rovers
Forest look like they are playing with more confidence and this is the best opportunity they will get to win their third home game. Rovers are doomed.
Prediction; 2-0

Plymouth Argyle v Southampton
Plymouth could do us a big favour here and I believe they will. Not even their erratic home form should be enough to prevent them securing a south-coast win over the Saints.
Prediction; 1-0

Preston NE v Derby County
Home win. Derby have survival on their mind and won last week. Preston have higher ambitions and a win here will keep them in touch with the play-off chasers.
Predictions; 2-0

Reading v Cardiff City
Cardiff have been travelling well down the M4 this season. They will have a good go here but Reading have the incentive of automatic promotion and should be able to smell blood.
Prediction; 3-2

Sheffield Wednesday v Blackpool
Good home form meets away battlers. Christmas hands the advantage to the Owls.
Prediction; 2-1

Swansea City v Coventry City
The Swans have drawn seven home games this year and Robert Martinez will see that as their play-off hopes wasted at the Liberty Stadium. Coventry meanwhile have been better away from the Ricoh although this looks a hard ask.
Prediction; 2-1

Watford v Bristol City
Watford slipped up at Derby on Saturday but will probably get this one right. Gary Johnson must be wondering what he's done wrong this year as Bristol City struggle to reproduce last season's form. 
Prediction; 2-0

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Sheffield United
Mick McCarthy will be confident of steering the best footballing side in the Championship into the Premier League now that they have turned for home. This will be another chnace of three points and in front of a bumper Molineux crowd. SEB, Big Chris and Kightly to turn the screw.
Prediction; 3-0

Looking back through that lot, I realise I have gone for every side to win at home bar one. 

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