As the English Football League continues to excite and astonish fans, the focus shifts to two crucial matches in the Championship and League Two this weekend.

With teams like Southampton and MK Dons showing early promise, there's much to analyze and predict, especially when it comes to identifying the potential goal-scorers. In this article, we'll dive into the intricacies of the Southampton vs QPR and MK Dons vs Doncaster Rovers games, assessing both sides' strategies, key players, and statistical insights. From the prolific Che Adams to the striking Mohamed Eisa, we'll explore who might find the back of the net, providing valuable betting tips for those looking to place their bets.

Southampton v QPR Saturday, 3pm

In the early weeks of the new Championship season, Southampton have certainly been one of the more eye-catching performers. Boss Russell Martin however will be glad to see the summer transfer window come to a conclusion, as he won’t want to see many more of his star names depart! James Ward-Prowse, Romeo Lavia and Tino Livramento have left at various points, whilst Che Adams continues to be linked with a Premier League move. Still, Martin has quickly installed his style of play on this talented group of players, and so far it is getting the best out of them.

The Saints unsurprisingly lead the lead for average ball possession with 69.4%, and with weekend opponents QPR only seeing 37.2% of the ball on average, it is fair to say that we know how this particular encounter will play out in terms of a narrative. That doesn’t necessarily mean this is a certain home victory, but the bookies believe it is pretty close to that. However, there have been recent encouraging signs for QPR after manager Gareth Ainsworth reverted to a 3-4-3 system following their opening-day hammering from Watford. An away win at Cardiff was followed by a slender home loss to in-form Ipswich, and performance levels suggest the players are starting to show what they’re capable of. Ainsworth’s Wycombe tactics did not translate with this QPR squad, and change was needed.

That being said, QPR will need to out-perform what they’ve been doing recently and then some if they’re to leave St Mary’s with a positive outcome. Southampton top the xG league with 10.15, roughly three goals more than any other side. QPR sit top of the xGA league with 7.13, so I think we know why Southampton are big favourites here! This is the Championship, however, and stranger things have happened. Martin’s men may be unbeaten but they’ve still had their issues in periods of games, and QPR playing on the break will suit, assuming they can hold out defensively, which is far from certain.

I do like the look of a player to find the back of the net in this one. We’ve touched upon Che Adams perhaps wanting a move away, but he has still been involved this season, and I just hope he doesn’t throw a strop and refuses to play or anything like that, because he’ll fancy his chances against this QPR defence. It is a QPR back three that is not at 100% right now if we’re saying summer signings Steve Cook and Morgan Fox are building up fitness, whilst Osman Kakay is more of a full back by trade. Jake Clarke-Salter may return, but he is well short of match fitness, even if he did. The movement of Adams will make him very tough to keep quiet, especially with this likely to be attack against defence for lengthy spells.

Adams just to score, just as he has done in all three league games this season (despite only starting once), is available at 2.30 with Bet365. He will only get sharper the more minutes he plays, and with Southampton likely to fire 15+ shots on goal, you’d imagine, I’d like to think he can find a way past Asmir Begovic.

MK Dons v Doncaster Rovers Saturday, 3pm

Another weekend tussle that catches my eye across the EFL card comes when MK Dons welcomes Doncaster Rovers to Stadium MK. It has been a solid return to life in League Two for MK Dons with three wins from four, ensuring there is no hangover after relegation. They were amongst the favourites in pre-season to earn an immediate return to the third-tier of English football. That comes as no surprise given their strike force of Mohamed Eisa and Jonathan Leko shouldn’t really be playing at this level.

Doncaster Rovers looked to the past to try and bring the good times back to South Yorkshire club when Grant McCann was hired to the manager’s job for a second time. He guided them to the play-offs in his last spell in charge when a League One club, only losing on penalties to Charlton Athletic in an entertaining semi-final tie. Things are a bit different now with the club at a lower level, but he took the job believing he can get them nearer the top of the table once more. However, they are winless and head into this clash in the relegation zone, but did knock out Championship side and his former club Hull City away from home in the League Cup.

The reward for Rovers for winning that cup clash is a home fixture with Premier League side Everton a few days after this trip to Milton Keynes. Will the players have had an eye on that big clash? Even if they didn’t, it is still one of the tougher trips to make in this league, with MK Dons primed to have a strong home record across the campaign. One word of caution with MK Dons is that they are heavily out-performing their metrics in relation to xG. Their xG figures places them at 4.78, when they’ve actually scored ten goals in total. Whilst they are high-scorers, they’ve not necessarily created the high quality chances that figure may suggest.

A big reason they have scored as many as they have done is because they have, in my eyes, the best striker in League Two in the form of Mohamed Eisa. He has netted four of their ten goals, scoring in every league match so far. He has the finishing quality to score even when the chance itself is not so straightforward. He should be in League One, and is likely to leave his mark at this level before returning their next season, with or without MK Dons. He is priced 2.25 with Bet365 to maintain his scoring run.

Doncaster have conceded the most goals in the league, and I can’t see them holding out against a talented forward line. One good way of utilising both the recommended plays in this article is to put them up in a double. Bet365 has priced a combo of Adams and Eisa to score on Saturday at 5.17, and I wouldn’t put anybody offer having a cheeky wager on this.

EFL Goal Scorer Tips

  • Southampton v QPR – Che Adams Anytime Scorer (2.30 Bet365)
  • MK Dons v Doncaster Rovers – Mohamed Eisa Anytime Scorer (2.25 Bet365)
  • Double – 5.17 (£10 returns £51.75)

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