Mike Holden gives us the preview for this league 2 clash
Luton’s fixation with the first goal continued at Crawley last weekend as they conceded shortly before half-time and slumped to a surprise 2-0 defeat, huffing and puffing without much purpose for much of the second half. Whether the Hatters fall behind or go ahead, counter-attacking football tends to rule thereafter and further goals usually follow.
It’s anyone’s guess who strikes first blood in this game but, with Darren Ferguson occupying the opposition dugout, goals should be expected either way. In Doncaster’s last four league outings, the first goal has been timed at 1, 14, 4 and 17 minutes, with Rovers breaking the deadlock - and going on to win - on three of those occasions.
As much as Luton get frustrated when behind, they actually pose the third-biggest attacking threat in the division, according to shot data, with 1.65 expected goals per game, a table that Doncaster top on 1.78. Yet Luton’s defence is no better than average and this game produces a total goals expectancy of 2.79 on my ratings, which is around 0.23 goals higher than the market.
With over 2.5 goals trading at odds on and the importance of the first goal time in any case, the bet to be having is over 3.5 goals at 9/4. Any goal scored in the first half should ensure a good run for your money in the second period. Ideally, it will be Luton forging ahead and then we potentially get to see both teams at their most purposeful.