Before becoming a Sports Journalist for Free Super Tips, Aaron spent three years studying Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland while taking in the Black Cats' 'glory years' under Martin O'Neill. Now back in Northern Ireland he turns niche stats into predictions for FST, while he's one of the few people on this island who is equally comfortable at Windsor Park and the Aviva.
The Championship returns on Friday with a bumper Easter schedule, featuring 22 games across just four days in this long Easter weekend. The pick of those is Friday evening’s top six battle between Barnsley and Reading, with both out to further their playoff ambitions.
Ahead of the showdown at Oakwell we’ve ran through the best bet builder markets to produce a 138/1 prediction for this clash. You can see each of our selections for the game below, alongside a bet builder cheat sheet which can help you pick out the best same-game multi bets.
You can find the rest of our predictions and analysis for the weekend’s other fixtures on our football tips page.
Barnsley vs Reading bet builder guide
Barnsley come into this clash as one of the form sides in the Championship. The Tykes have claimed 19 points from the last 24 available, the third-best record in that time. On top of that, they’ve won nine of their last 11 league games and that run has taken them into fifth, a place above Reading.
That’s a concern for Reading, as they’ve failed to win any of their three clashes at top-six sides this season. The Royals have claimed just one point in those fixtures, so we see the in-form Tykes taking the points in this clash.
Bet builder tip: Barnsley to win
Both teams to score
Both of these sides come into Friday’s clash in fine form in front of goal. Barnsley have scored in six of their last seven at home, while Reading haven’t drawn a blank in any of their last six matches.
The pair have a track record of open games, with the previous four meetings between them at Oakwell seeing both teams score. Given that Barnsley have notched 22 goals in 16 matches in 2021 and with Reading averaging 1.2 goals per away game, we’ve backed both teams to score here and in our Barnsley vs Reading predictions.
Bet builder tip: BTTS
Barnsley have really stepped up a gear in recent months to launch their playoff push. Forward Carlton Morris has broken into the side just as their form started to turn in 2021. The striker has scored six times in his last 11 outings for Barnsley, grabbing goals in two of their last three games.
Morris has secured his place for the Tykes and we expect him to build on his good form. Sitting at 23/10 Morris catches the eye in the anytime goalscorer market, so we’ve added him to score into our bet builder tip.
Bet builder tip: Carlton Morris to score
Shots on target
Of course, Reading have their own firepower to call on heading into this clash. Forward Lucas Joao has been a standout for the Royals this season, proving to be a constant thorn in the sides of Championship defenders.
Not only does Joao lead the way for Reading with 18 goals, but he’s also taken more shots than anyone else in their squad. The frontman is a consistent threat in the box, having averaged 1.1 shots on target per game this season. Given that record, we think Joao is good value to trouble the keeper here.
Bet builder tip: Lucas Joao 1+ shot on target
Cauley Woodrow doesn’t just lead the way for Barnsley in goals, he’s also the man with the most bookings for the Tykes. The forward is regularly in trouble, having picked up seven cautions this term. He makes an average of 1.9 fouls per game, making Woodrow our pick to be booked on Friday.
Bet builder tip: Cauley Woodrow to be shown a card
Barnsley vs Reading bet builder
You can back all of our selections in one bet using the Betfair banner below.
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