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Stuart Dalgleish 5th Apr 2009 - 13:43

Derby draw could be useful to the Blues and Wolves chasing pack

Wolverhampton Wanderers have won their last three away games to cement their place at the top of the table and avoiding defeat here would only further enhance their chances of a return to the Premier League.

For Birmingham this game represents the last real opportunity of closing the gap on their Midlands rivals as Wolves have a pretty decent run-in and shouldn't drop too many more points.

In recent times home wins have been very hard to come by when these two sides meet, just one home victory has been achieved at St Andrew's or Molineux in the last ten league and cup fixtures with five of the last seven matches finishing level.

Alex McLeish's team go into the game on the back of some good home form so will fancy their chances of claiming the points - the hosts are undefeated in eight matches on home soil only conceding three goals along the way.

The hosts haven't beaten their neighbours at St Andrew's since April 2000, they're an 8/5 shot to end that run with three points on Monday evening. The draw, which has happened in the last three league meetings on Blues' territory, is available at 21/10. A fourth consecutive away win for Mick McCarthy's men can be backed at 9/5.

James McFadden has been out of action since January but is back in contention to start this crucial derby game, can he return with a bang and get the opening goal? He's 13/2 to break the dead-lock with first of the game. Carlos Costly proved to be very costly for Sven-Göran Eriksson, the Honduran international scored twice to put the final nail into the Mexico manager's coffin, but at 7/1 for the first goal he doesn't represent great value - he's yet to notch one for the Blues since arriving on loan.

Sylvan Ebanks-Blake certainly hasn't struggled to score goals this season - the recently named Championship Player of the Year has rattled in 24 goals from 38 starts and at 6/1 is a great price to pounce first in this game. Chris Iwelumo and loan recruit Marlon Harewood will be vying for a place alongside the league's leading scorer and are both priced at 13/2 to grab the opening goal of the game.

Make sure you join us at 19:45 when the action unfolds as William Hill will bring you a large range of in-running options with our excellent betlive service.

Birmingham v Wolves - Monday 19:45

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