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Bookie Watch - April 8th, 2011

How the bookies view Reading this week.

Here's our weekly look into what the bookmakers are saying about Reading Football Club.

So five weeks to go now and for the first time in 2011 we find ourselves in a play-off place, rather than chasing one. The Royals are now three points clear of the chasing pack, with a much better goal difference and confidence sky-high amongst the players and fans.

So do the bookies share our optimism?

Championship - Promotion Odds: (Source - Oddschecker 08/04/11)

                      THIS WEEK       LAST WEEK
QPR                     1/50 1/25 
NORWICH               5/6 11/8
CARDIFF               13/8 28/13
SWANSEA             9/5 13/10
LEEDS                   7/2 4/1
READING               4/1 7/1
LEICESTER               14/1 12/1
BURNLEY                 14/1 8/1
HULL                    33/1 14/1


So our recent good form has led to our odds on promotion almost halving within the space of seven days, with the Royals now a best price of 4/1 to win promotion back to the Premier League.

The bookies are all but proclaiming QPR up, with the best price you can get on them winning promotion now 1/50, with Norwich also now odds on favourites to also make it into the top flight.

In terms of making the play-offs, we're also down to 8/15 with Bet 365 to make the top six, showing how strongly the bookies fancy us to make it into the promotion lottery.  Our nearest challengers, Nottingham Forest, are now 6/4 to make the top six.

Top Goalscorer

Shane Long is also still in contention to be the top scorer in the Championship. Long's brace against Portsmouth took him to 20 league goals for the season and closed the gap on current top scorer Danny Graham to three. The bookies now have the Irishman at a best price of 10/3 to overhaul Graham and finish top of the pile, with Graham best priced at 1/2.