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Friday, 14 December, 2018

Buzzing Hornets can sting Bristol City

Tips for Tuesday's second round matches

Troy Deeney of Watford
1 of 1

Second-round matches
From 7.30pm Tuesday

Watford have made a great start in the Premier League, banking four points from a possible six, and they can progress in the EFL Cup by beating Bristol City at Vicarage Road.

Top-flight clubs have a huge financial advantage over second-tier sides these days and Watford's squad depth should count in their favour in a contest featuring selection changes from both managers.

Bristol City boss Lee Johnson made six changes for the first-round tie at home to Plymouth and watched with satisfaction as his side romped to a 5-0 victory.

But he may get stung if he is planning a similar approach against the Hornets as Watford's Marco Silva, who is also set to rotate his squad, has a lot of quality waiting in the wings.

Troy Deeney, last season's top scorer, is expected to return from injury and could partner Stefano Okaka in a powerful attack.

Etienne Capoue, who came off the bench to score a spectacular goal at Bournemouth on Saturday, and summer signing Will Hughes could also come into the side and will be looking to press their claims for more regular involvement.

A healthy competition for places has developed early in Silva's reign and, on the evidence of the 3-3 draw with Liverpool and a 2-0 win at Bournemouth, the pre-season talk of a possible relegation struggle looks wide of the mark.

Watford have the potential to finish mid-table and enjoy a decent run in the cups and should continue their bright start to the campaign.

Sheffield Wednesday have one of the deeper squads in the Sky Bet Championship and should overcome divisional rivals Bolton.

The main aim for Wednesday boss Carlos Carvalhal is promotion but he has a strong enough pool of players to be competitive in the cups.

Carvalhal's side beat Chesterfield 4-1 in the first round and stretched their unbeaten run to four with a 1-0 win at Fulham on Saturday.

Bolton are winless in the league after four games and made heavy weather of a 2-1 victory at Crewe in the first round, losing the shot count 11-4. They face a far tougher task against Wednesday and are unlikely to prevail.

Millwall are also without a win in the Championship but could continue their cup progress with a win at Reading.

The Lions have been playing well without getting their rewards. They have won the shot count in all four league games and it shouldn't take long for strikers Steve Morison and Lee Gregory to start finding the net.

Reading look a pale shadow of the side who reached the playoff final last season and may suffer a first home defeat of the campaign.

League One Doncaster have been well backed to topple Hull at home but Donny still look value.

Darren Ferguson's side are unbeaten in four games this term and can see off the Championship visitors, whose thin squad was further depleted by injuries to Kevin Stewart and Fraizer Campbell during Saturday's 2-1 defeat at QPR.

Recommendations
Watford
3pts 3-4 Sky Bet
Sheffield Wednesday
2pts 13-10 Hills
Millwall draw no bet
2pts 6-4 Hills
Doncaster
2pts 11-8 Hills

Bet on this week's games at Soccerbase.com

Troy Deeney, last season's top scorer, is expected to return from injury and could partner Stefano Okaka in a powerful attack
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