Football: My money’s on Martin

PUBLISHED: 08:46 27 January 2006 | UPDATED: 21:39 28 May 2010

THE identity of the next England manager dominates the thoughts of punters at the moment. The successor to Sven Goran Eriksson is unlikely to be named yet but that isn t stopping healthy speculation. English managers are among the front runners and this w

THE identity of the next England manager dominates the thoughts of punters at the moment.

The successor to Sven Goran Eriksson is unlikely to be named yet but that isn't stopping healthy speculation.

English managers are among the front runners and this week, you could have backed Bolton's Sam Allardyce at around 5/2 or Alan Curbishley and Steve McClaren at 4/1.

However, the FA haven't ruled out another foreign manager and midweek odds showed Guus Hiddink leading the overseas challenge at 7/1 and the man who took Brazil to World Cup success, Luiz Filipe Scolari at 12/1.

My preference would be to see Jose Mourinho take charge but I admit that is unlikely and the odds of around 25/1 reflect that.

However, my second choice would be Martin O'Neill and I am tempted to put some money on him returning to football management wearing an England tracksuit at around 8/1.

IT is FA Cup weekend again and I am always on the look out for possible shocks but I have to say I can't see many in the headlines this time around.

But there are two ties where Premiership sides could find the going tough. Brentford, flying high in League One, are at home to Sunderland on Saturday and at 9/5, I am certainly tempted to back the home side.

Championship leaders Reading are in fantastic form at the moment and they entertain the improving Birmingham City on Saturday.

This is a tough one to call and the odds actually make Reading the favourites but I am going to put my money on the home side at 6/5.

A £10 double on Brentford and Reading victories will return more than £60 - very tempting.

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