Sports betting: All the signs point to Premiership draw

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HAVING PLAYED out goalless draws against Middlesbrough and Derby respectively in their opening games, it would come as little surprise to see tonight's Premiership game between Leeds and Blackburn at Elland Road drag towards a dour 9-4 draw (perhaps 0-0).

Despite victories against Manchester United, Newcastle and Derby, Leeds' home record last season was the worst of the clubs who finished in the top nine, with the exception of Aston Villa.

Their fifth place in the Premiership was mainly due to their away form, which was only bettered by the champions, Arsenal, and second placed Manchester United.

Leeds' hopes of victory are boosted by the return of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink from suspension in a new-look strike force, which sees him paired with his fellow Dutchman, Clyde Wijnhard. The Norwegian international Gunnar Halle and his fellow defender Mark Jackson are also available again after serving one-match bans, but Graham is still without his Republic of Ireland international right-back, Gary Kelly, Alan Maybury (both shins) and David Robertson (knee) through injury.

Christian Dailly faces a testing debut if Blackburn's manager, Roy Hodgson, decides to play his new pounds 5.35m defender. Dailly, signed from Derby, may be kept out by a player Blackburn picked up on a free transfer in the summer - Darren Peacock.

Peacock has made an impressive start and it is not certain that Dailly will partner the Swiss international, Stephane Henchoz.

Hodgson is likely to keep faith with his record signing Kevin Davies in a pounds 12m partnership with Chris Sutton in attack although both Kevin Gallacher and Martin Dahlin are pressing claims for inclusion.


Team C H L S T

Leeds 10-11 evs evs evs 5-6

Draw 9-4 2-1 9-4 9-4 9-4

Blackburn 5-2 13-5 9-4 9-4 5-2

C Coral, H William Hill, L Ladbrokes, S Stanley, T Tote