Hasselbaink makes managerial bow for Burton away at Wycombe
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink takes charge of a Football League club for the first time when his Burton Albion side travel to Wycombe Wanderers, and the Brewers have beaten Gareth Ainsworth’s men in each of their last three meetings. Coral make the visitors 12/5 chances to give their new boss a winning debut.
Both Burton and the Chairboys are very much in the League Two promotion mix, as both occupy spots in the top six. Only struggling Tranmere Rovers and third-tier team Coventry City in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy have beaten Wycombe at Adams Park this term, however, so the hosts are 23/20 favourites for victory. A draw comes in at 23/10.
Hasselbaink inherits a Brewers team whose form has dipped since predecessor Gary Rowett was courted by and brought back to old side Birmingham City. It’s just one win in five across all competitions for Albion, and goals have also dried up with one in the last three.
A great striker in his playing days for Leeds United, Chelsea and Middlesbrough, Hasselbaink will be wanting more from the Burton attack. Uncapped Northern Irishman Adam McGurk grabbed the winner in the last meeting between these two sides, and he is a 13/2 chance to score first again.
Brewers midfielder Alex MacDonald has netted the club’s last two goals, so must be considered in the anytime market at 7/2. Hasselbaink may also help to revive the career of Stuart Beavon, who faces his former club here.
Spells at Preston North End and now Albion have underwhelmed, but if there’s one game he should be up for then it surely here on his old stomping ground where he was so prolific. Beavon is a 7/4 shot to come back and haunt Wanderers.
Wycombe top scorer Paul Hayes, meanwhile, is the subject of an enhanced 7/2 wincast (with a maximum stake of £20). If he scores against Burton and Ainsworth’s men beat them, then punters will be quids in. Hayes has netted in both of his matches in November, so this looks to be a fantastic bet.
Chairboys academy product Matt McClure, another young Northern Irish prospect, may be the horse for this particular course, however, as he has three goals in his two career starts against the Brewers. This explains the 5/4 on offer for him to net anytime.
Ainsowrth is looking forward to hosting duties, pitting his wits against Hasselbaink and the attention Wycombe will garner from a televised fixture. “What an appointment Jimmy is. It’s fantastic for League Two and fantastic for Burton,” he said in a interview with local radio.
“I was lucky enough to play against him. He was a great player and has proven to be a decent coach. It will be a tough game. He will definitely bring something to Burton.
“For us to be hosting one of the favourites for the league, on TV, with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink as the new manager, is a great occasion.”
Lincoln City and QPR playing legend Ainsworth will want to take this opportunity for Wanderers to regain top spot, with just six points separating the top seven. Albion’s poor away form means he may get his wish, with a narrow 1-0 win a 6/1 shot.