Sunderland vs Portsmouth predictions and betting tips for this first leg of this League One play-off semi-final on Saturday 11th May. These two sides are familiar foes, and the pair meet again for the a two-legged play-off contest which begins at the Stadium of Light on Saturday evening.
The odds for Sunderland to beat Portsmouth on Saturday are 29/20, the draw is 9/4 and you’ll get the same odds for a Portsmouth win at bet365.
A bet on both teams to score is one of our tips and you can get 10/11 for that selection. Where as over 2.5 goals is priced at 23/20.
Sunderland have won just one of their last seven League One matches.
The Black Cats drew 19 of their 46 matches this campaign.
It ended 1-1 here on April 27th, 2019.
Kick Off Time: 19:45pm
Date: Saturday 11th May 2019
Venue: Stadium of Light
Sunderland and Pompey weren’t expecting to meet at this stage of the play-offs, but Sunderland’s last day defeat to Southend coupled with Charlton thumping victory at the Valley dropped the Black Cats drop to fifth place.
Despite having to re-build under Jack Ross, the majority of Sunderand fans will come into this game underwhelmed by their sides recent performances, and there are big questions marks surrounding their defence. The Wearsiders scored in 45 of their 46 games this season, but they routinely tried to hold onto 1-0 leads, and that is always a dangerous game.
Sunderland lost just once this season at the Stadium of Light, with Coventry the only side to beat Ross’ men on their own patch. Pompey drew 1-1 here, and we could see a similar result once again. Ten of Sunderland’s 19 draws arrived in the North East, and even if they take the lead, they may not be able to hold onto the advantage against a lively Pompey side.
Kenny Jackett’s men don’t arrive in the best of form, with Pompey failing to win any of their last three League One games. They dropped points against Peterborough and Accrington, although they knew that they were guaranteed a play-off position by the time they took to the field in each of these encounters.
Portsmouth were the strongest away side in the division this season, and were only beaten on four occasions. They’ve won four of their last five matches on the road, and are set up quite nicely to play away from home. They endured their mid-season blip, and have ended the season strongly.
Despite missing out on promotion, Sunderland have lost the fewest games in the division, whilst Pompey have only lost by more than one-goal margin once this campaign. There is plenty of pressure on both sides, and Sunderland will be desperate to take a lead to Fratton Park next week.
This game is tight, and the sides are closely matched, as they’ve demonstrated twice this season already.
The draw looks the best option, and it’s the first of our EFL betting tips for Saturday’s clash. It is available at 23/10 with Boylesports, and new customers can use the £25 free bet on any of this weekend’s play-off games.
We’re going to snap up some value in this League One play-off tie, with local lad Ben Close our selection at 9/1. The 22-year signed a new deal with the club in April, and has been excellent since coming into the side. He replaced the outgoing Ben Thompson, and has netted nine times this campaign.
He’s been in good goalscoring form recently, with six of his nine goals arriving since the start of March. He’s netted three in his last five, and he’s taking up very dangerous positions. With Sunderland putting their concentration into marking Jamal Lowe and Ronan Curtis, they could potentially leave Close unmarshalled, and he could take full advantage.
With Jackett often tempted to tweak his forward line, backing Ben Close looks to be the best option here, and he’s a tremendous price.
Read More: See all of our predictions for the final weekend of the Premier League season
There hasn’t been much between these two sides when they’ve met this campaign, but the encounters have certainly been entertaining. The EFL Trophy match went to extra-time, after finishing all-square, and we’re predicting a draw once more.
Pompey had four 1-1 draws this season on the road, whilst this scoreline was frustratingly familiar to Sunderland fans. A whopping 15 of their matches ended 1-1, and both teams could find the net once more.
Barnsley were the only side to keep Sunderland off the score-sheet this season, whilst they kept just one clean sheet in their last eight League One games.
Pompey have been much stronger defensively, although they haven’t kept a clean sheet in any of their last seven matches. Both Teams to Score? Yes looks to be the best goals-based bet in this game.
Sunderland Win – 5/4
Draw – 9/4
Portsmouth Win – 9/4