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Reading FC - Bookie Watch - April 22, 2011

READING FC

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

So just over three weeks to go now and while Norwich's crushing 5-1 win over Ipswich has given them a big boost in their hunt for automatic promotion, the Royals are realistically one win away from being at least in the play-off lottery come May. So with just four games left what are the bookies saying about our promotion chances.

Championship - Promotion Odds: (Source - Oddschecker 22/04/11)
TODAY LAST WEEK TWO WEEKS AGO
QPR                 1/200 1/200 1/50
NORWICH               4/6 5/4 5/6
CARDIFF               5/6 EVS 13/8
READING               7/4 2/1 4/1
SWANSEA             11/4 6/4 9/5
LEEDS                 8/1 13/2 7/2
NOTTINGHAM FOREST 10/1 8/1 13/2
HULL                 14/1 28/1 33/1
BURNLEY              20/1 50/1 14/1
LEICESTER            50/1 16/1 14/1
KEY: ODDS SHORTENING ODDS LENGTHENING

Once again Reading's odds have shortened in the last seven days, with our promotion chances valued at a best price of 7/4, a slight shortening from last week's 2/1. The only other significant Reading change is that we've now rated a better shot of getting promoted then Brendan Rodgers' Swansea, who have seen their odds nearly double over the past couple of weeks.

The bookies are still all but proclaiming QPR up, despite their draw with Derby, with the best price you can get on them winning promotion 1/200. Norwich have gone above behind Cardiff as the next best fancied, with the Canaries odds on at 4/6 to seal a second straight promotion. However, Cardiff's odds have shortened this week, down to just better than evens.

In terms of making the play-offs, we're also down to 1/9 with Bet 365 to make the top six, showing how strongly the bookies fancy us to at least make it into the promotion lottery. Given that we need only one win from four games to make it there, and with our automatic chances perhaps a point too far, it's not bad odds to have a flutter. In the 'promotion without QPR' market (in other words second place) we're at 6/1 with the same company, with Norwich 10/11 and Cardiff 11/8. Our title odds are now at 100/1.

Top Goalscorer

Shane Long is also still in contention to be the top scorer in the Championship. Long didn't find the net against Leicester but still remains on 21 for the season.  Top scorer Danny Graham didn't score  this week either, keeping the gap between the men at three. The bookies have the Irishman at a best price of 7/2 to overhaul Graham and finish top of the pile, with the Watford Striker best priced at 1/5.