Watford host Reading on Friday night to kick off the weekend in the Championship. It is a top-six match in the Championship with both Watford and Reading chasing promotion to the Premier League. Xisco’s Watford head into the game in second place and are unbeaten in their last six matches. First place is well away from Watford, but they have made the runners-up and second automatic position thier own.
The Hornets are nine points above third-place Brentford with six games to play. Brentford have a game in hand, but their form over the last six games has been awful. They will need to improve dramatically and Watford must collapse for the latter to miss out on automatic promotion.
Reading are three-games unbeaten in the Championship. They won 3-1 against Derby County on matchday 40 to improve their chances of making the playoffs. Going into round 41, just one point separates Reading from seventh-place Bournemouth. The Cherries are likely the only team still in the hunt for the top six. Reading must simply continue to win to remain in the top six. A victory against Watford on Friday night would heap pressure on Bournemouth for their game on Saturday versus Coventry City.
Reading claimed a 1-0 win against Watford earlier this season at home. George Puscas’s first-half goal was enough for Reading to win the match. The game was played in October when Watford were still figuring things out following their relegation from the Premier League. Vladimir Ivic was Watford manager at that time.
Watford vs Reading Betting Odds
Xisco’s Watford are atop the current Championship form table. The Hornets were brilliant in their last six games in the league, claiming 16 points from 18 available. The defence conceded a mere three times in six games while the team scored 12 times. The only blemish the Hornets experienced over the course of their last six games was a 1-1 draw versus Middlesbrough last weekend.
Watford are at odds of 6/7 to win the game on Friday night at Vicarage Road. They have the Championship’s best home points total with 50 points from 60 possible. Six straight games at Vicarage Road ended in victory for the Hornets.
Reading have been hot and cold in recent games. They took just nine points from their last 18 available. Manager Veljko Paunovi? watched the Royals post a +4-goal difference over the course of their last six matches in the league. They have slipped up in recent games with just two victories in six games and hanging onto the final promotion playoff place will be difficult.
Reading are at odds of 15/4 to win and complete the double over Watford. The difference between the reverse fixture and game this weekend is the form of both teams. Watford are flying high while Reading are hanging onto the final promotion playoff place. The Royals failed to win their last three away matches.
Watford vs Reading Team News
Xisco has two players on the Watford injury list this weekend. Both are long-term injuries as striker Troy Deeney is recovering from an Achilles tendon issue. He could return to the team this month and help Watford down the stretch in the race for automatic promotion. Midfielder Tom Dele-Bashiru is ruled out until next season after suffering an ACL injury.
Forward Ismaila Sarr is attracting plenty of attention from Premier League teams thanks to his 10 goals in 35 Championship appearances. Sarr has four assists to go with the 10 goals. The forward scored Watford’s goal against Middlesbrough on matchday 40.
Paunovi? suffered a massive injury blow with the news that defender Michael Morrison will miss the remainder of the season. Morrison is nursing a serious hamstring injury, but is set to return in time for the playoffs, if Reading make it. The defender is out of contract in the summer and is yet to receive a new deal.
Defender Tom McIntyre is a doubt for the match due to a knee injury. Midfielder John Swift is nearing a return from a hamstring problem and could make his long-awaited return in the final weeks of the campaign. Felipe Araruna could play a part in the game this weekend following a knee injury.
Watford vs Reading Prediction
Both teams to score: YES @ 21/20 - BET NOW
The last five games played by Reading in the Championship finished with both teams scoring goals. Watford are coming off of a 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough in the Championship. Reading need to continue win games and score goals to make the playoffs. Watford also need to keep pick up points, but unlike Reading, they have some wiggle room in the final games of the season.
Ismaila Sarr to score anytime @ 12/5 - BET NOW
Sarr is having an excellent year as Watford’s most important goalscorer. He has 10 goals and nine assists in 35 appearnces in the Championship. He has scored or assisted a goal in each of the last three matches in the division. Sarr scored against Middlesbrough last weekend to give Watford a share of the spoils. Sarr is reportedly a top transfer target for Aston Villa going into the offseason.
Over 2.5 goals scored @ 5/4 - BET NOW
Three of Watford’s last five games in the league finished with over 2.5 goals scored. The team’s defence has been very good over the course of their last six games, conceding just three times. Reading need to get points on Friday night to hold off Bournemouth. Paunovi? should set out the team to attack against Watford. Three of Reading’s last six games in the Championship finished with more than 2.5 goals tallied.
Watford’s future is in their own hands. The Hornets should finish as runners-up in the Championship unless they have a complete collapse. Reading’s promotion playoff hopes are not necessarily in their own hands. They need to win games to stay ahead of Bournemouth, who have a game in hand. Reading have a difficult run of games versus Swansea City, Cardiff City, and Norwich City.
Watford vs Reading Tips
Here are our Watford vs Reading tips for Friday's Championship match at Vicarage Road.
1. Both teams to score: YES @ 21/20
2. Ismaila Sarr to score anytime @ 12/5
3. Over 2.5 goals scored @ 5/4
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