• Nathan Smith


THE CHAMPIONSHIP – Wycombe Wanderers VS QPR (19th December – KO 3pm)

The last few weeks have not been easy for Wycombe Wanderers, coming off the back of three losses in a row, and no wins in nine. This run of form has put unwanted space between Wycombe and 21st place Nottingham Forest, in the form of a five-point gap. Manager Gareth Ainsworth has recently released a Christmas song alongside Petr Cech, and he will be hoping his team can hit all the right notes in front of their home fans.

QPR have had a worrying run of form as of late, with no wins in six leaving manager Mark Warburton under a bit of pressure. With only three goals scored in those games, QPR need players like Lyndon Dykes and Bright Osayi-Samuel to start firing in the goals and lead Warburton’s side back up the table. While the Rs are not getting battered week in week out, they will need to start winning games to avoid being dragged into a relegation scrap.

With both sides in bad form, getting the win will be important to both Ainsworth and Warburton as both managers look to play their teams into some form.

LEAGUE ONE – Plymouth Argyle vs MK Dons (19th December – KO 3pm)

A few weeks ago, things were looking bright at Home Park. Ryan Lowe had Plymouth sat just outside the play-offs and hopes of an unlikely promotion push were growing. Fast forward to now, and Plymouth find themselves in 19th, having lost 6 league games on the bounce. These include a 5-1 defeat at Fleetwood, a 4-0 home defeat to Rochdale and a 3-0 away defeat at Bristol Rovers which highlights the defending problems at Argyle. Lowe was visibly frustrated after the 2-1 defeat to Crewe and will be wanting to put things right on Saturday.

After a poor start, Russell Martin’s heavy possession style is starting to show results for MK Dons, as they sit in 15th, with some space from the relegation zone. With three draws in their last five, Martin’s side have not been losing and a few more wins could see them safely avoid any sort of relegation battle and exceed most expectations. The likes of Cameron Jerome and Richard Keogh provide MK Dons with experience that may be needed to guide Martin’s team through the season.

With the away side seemingly on the up, and the home side rapidly going down, both teams will want to come away with the win on Saturday.

LEAGUE TWO – Forest Green Rovers vs Carlisle United (19th December – KO 3pm)

With no losses in six games, Forest Green Rovers continue to show everyone that they are ready to mount a significant title challenge this season. It seems that Mark Cooper has finally found the formula and players to give Rovers success in League Two and he will be looking to said formula on Saturday. Jamille Matt and Aaron Collins are some of the most formidable attacking players in the league and the back three Forest Green operate has held firm when necessary.

Carlisle get their second mention on the EFL watch in a week, but it’s hard not to talk about Chris Beech’s side at the moment. After seeing off Mansfield 1-0, Carlisle come into this game in second place, two points off league leaders Newport County. Jon Mellish and Callum Guy have been imperious in the midfield and vital to the Cumbrians efforts in front of goal with the former being their top goal scorer and the latter being the top assister.

In an early promotion six pointer, this is undoubtedly the game of the week in the EFL and whoever wins this will have a great momentum boost going into the busy Christmas period.

WILDCARD – Leyton Orient vs Crawley Town (19th December – KO 3pm)

Leyton Orient are one of the more inconsistent sides in the League. For example, after losing 2-0 to relegation battling Scunthorpe United, Ross Embleton’s side shocked leaders Newport by two goals to one. In true Orient fashion, they went and lost 2-1 to Morecambe in their last game but regardless, they find themselves in a comfortable tenth position. The goalscoring exploits of Danny Johnson have been hard to ignore and with a striker as in-form as Johnson, Orient will be hard to write off.

Crawley Town made the headlines this week for the signing of former TOWIE star Mark Wright, who is funnily enough the brother of Leyton Orient midfielder Josh Wright, and eyes will be on John Yems team selection, with people wondering if the former Heart radio DJ will make his debut. Away from that, Crawley have remained chaotic, as most of their games consist of a fair few goals. Another unpredictable side, John Yems has built a team very capable of outscoring any team in the League with Max Watters especially catching the eye.

In a potential Wright family derby, both teams will want to play on the front foot and try and feed their in-form strikers, as they look to fire their respective sides up the table.