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League Two: Portsmouth standout in our season preview

| 06.08.2014

In recent years League Two has proved to be a happy hunting ground for punters taking an interest in the fancied sides for success.

Six of the last 10 antepost favourites have gone on to secure promotion, either by finishing as the champions or in the automatic promotion places.

And while some jollies disappoint we think this year�s bunch are all capable of doing the business and proving the bookies right.

Top Seven

Champions:�Luton Town (9/1)

Only three of the last 12 promoted sides from the Conference have gone on to secure back-to-back promotions.

But with an exciting assortment of signings, including Andy Drury and Paul Benson, Luton can continue their march through the leagues.

Automatic Promotion:�Bury (13/8 to get promoted), Portsmouth (9/5),�Burton (7/2)

Bury�look completely rejuvenated under manager David Flitcroft and are rightly tipped for success following some exciting signings, including the return of striker Ryan Lowe and Nicky Adams from Rotherham.

Portsmouth�flattered to deceive as last season�s favourites but manager Andy Awford has steadied the ship. Incoming Danny Hollands from Charlton and Craig Westcarr from Walsall should impress in the fourth tier.

Gary Rowett�s�Burton�were unfortunate to miss out in last term�s play-off final but with a solid squad and some smart additions, including John Mousinho and Stuart Beavon from Preston, the Brewers can go one better in 2014-15.

Play-Offs:�Shrewsbury (3/1 Play-Off Qualification), York (10/3), Stevenage (7/2) Southend (7/2)

Shrewsbury�s�recruitment drive this summer has seen them pick up a number of decent operators at this level (and above), including striker Scott Vernon and former Stoke midfielder Liam Lawrence.

York�topped the form table for the second-half of last season with 14 wins in 23 matches and look a strong bet to make the play-offs once again.

Graham Westley�s�Stevenage�have undergone a complete squad overhaul but the acquisitions of Chris Whelpdale from Gillingham and Calvin Zola from Aberdeen look useful enough.

Southend�were the best defensive side in the division last season and the additions of Myles Weston, David Worrall and Lee Barnard will add extra potency.


Exeter (5/1 to be relegated)

It�s been a long and hard summer for manager Paul Tisdale and the Grecians with a transfer embargo and trouble behind the scenes thrusting the club into turmoil.

The south-west club finished five points above the drop last term but only managed five wins in the second half of the season.

With a much weakened squad City could well suffer the same fate as neighbours Torquay and fall through the trapdoor.

Accrington (9/2)

Stanley boss James Beattie did exceptionally well to turn around last season�s campaign having overseen seven defeats in his first eight games.

But the loss of influential midfielder Peter Murphy to relegation rivals Wycombe and a lack of players arriving at the Crown Ground is a major concern.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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William Geldart

William contributed to a number of online football blogs before finally finding his pot of gold at the end of the rainbow alongside the rest of the Ladbrokes News team. Now indulging passions for football, horse racing, greyhounds, boxing and political betting. Supports Wycombe Wanderers and can be spotted at various lower league and non-league grounds across the country.