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Stuart Dalgleish 17th Sep 2009 - 12:52

It can be a Good Friday for Wednesday in the Steel City derby

In a weekend of great derbies to look forward to; Sheffield United v Sheffield Wednesday kicks things off to get you in the mood for what should be a cracking few days of live football.

It's fair to say that the Blades have a score (or two) to settle after seeing a 95-year old record disappear last season when the Owls did them over at Hillsborough and Bramall Lane - the second of those matches being won by an absolute screamer from Marcus Tudgay.

Kevin Blackwell's side have started this season off okay so will fancy their chances of claiming the points, but they are coming off the back of a defeat having gone down 3-2 at Coventry's Ricoh Arena, Wednesday also lost though; 3-1 at home to in-form Middlesbrough.

You can argue that the form book goes out the window when it comes to derbies - but I just feel that United will be softer at the back without star defender Matt Kilgallon who is struggling to be fit after suffering a chest infection.

Add to this Tudgay is bang in form scoring four goals in his last four games and will be a real handful for Kyle Walker - who will move from right-back to central defence should Killa not make it.

Even without the former England U21 star the Blades are still favourites for the game at 8/11, they have only won two of the last eight Bramall Lane derbies though. The draw is an 11/5 shot, which has happened five times in the last eight meetings at United, while Wednesday look good value at 10/3 to win their 3rd straight Steel City derby.

One player that is likely to cause problems for the Owls is Jamie Ward, the young Northern Irishman had a great game despite suffering defeat at Coventry; scoring a sensational equalising goal before having a blocked shot which allowed James Harper to score and make it 3-2 but unfortunately for United they couldn't find a 3rd goal to level the game - the former Chesterfield star is 11/2 to notch first in this game.

For Wednesday, the most likely source of goals will be Tudgay - who's a decent price at 7/1 to pounce first at Bramall Lane, but keep an eye out for Tommy Miller; he's yet to get off the mark for Brian Laws' team but has been a regular scorer over the years at this level and could well be worth a shout a 16/1 to break the deadlock in this one.

Here at William Hill we will, of course, provide you with a wealth of in-running betting opportunities to keep you involved right up to the final whistle, so make sure you join us at 19:45 when the action gets underway.


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