The League One play-offs get underway this Friday with fourth-placed Oxford United travelling south to take on fifth-placed Portsmouth in the opening leg of the semi-final.
After 21 years away from the Championship, Oxford finally have an opportunity to return to the second level of football.
Since their relegation from the second tier in the 1998/99 season, the club have been meandering between League One, League Two and even the National League.
Before the current season came to a halt, Oxford were firing on all cylinders and won five straight league games to jump into fourth place. At the same time, Portsmouth had just endured their third game in all competitions without a win.
Despite this, Pompey have been priced as the big favourites ahead of this first leg encounter. Kenny Jackett’s men are currently priced at 23/20 while their opponents are available at 13/5.
One of the reasons behind these pre-match odds is the fact that Portsmouth have the best home record in League One. From their 18 games at Fratton Park, Pompey have won twelve, drawn six and lost none.
In fact, the only two home defeats that Portsmouth suffered both came in cup competitions against Premier League’s Arsenal and Southampton.
Oxford and Pompey met on three occasions last year which saw each side pick up a respective victory and the latest encounter ending in a 1-1 draw.
This upcoming clash is also set to be tightly contested. With that in mind, our recommendation is to back the draw which is currently available at 23/10.
*All prices correct at time of writing and are subject to change