Barnsley vs Sheffield Wednesday predictions: Yorkshire rivals set for Wembley cracker
- Sheff Wed lost only six of their 46 regular-season fixtures
- Nine of Barnsley's last 18 regular-season games had over 3.5 goals
- Recommended bet: Over 2.5 Goals
Sheffield Wednesday produced a stunning comeback after losing 4-0 at Peterborough in the first leg of their League One play-off semi-final but they cannot take anything for granted against Yorkshire rivals Barnsley in Monday's final.
Wednesday finished the regular season with 96 points, the most by any club missing out on automatic promotion in EFL history, but two of their six defeats came against Barnsley, who won 2-0 at Hillsborough in September and 4-2 at Oakwell in March.
The Tykes know they can trouble the Wednesday defence but the Owls showed their spirit and nerve against Posh, winning on penalties after a 5-1 extra-time victory in the second leg, so a cracking play-off final is in prospect.
Barnsley could have a fully-fit squad at Wembley as skipper and player of the season Mads Andersen is set to start in defence. Devante Cole and Slobodan Tedic should get the nod up front with experienced striker James Norwood on the bench.
Sheffield Wednesday will assess the fitness of Marvin Johnson and Dominic Iorfa. George Byers is making good progress after a hamstring injury and may make the squad but Mallik Wilks and Akin Famewo remain sidelined.
Sheffield Wednesday lost only six of their 46 regular-season fixtures but two of those defeats came against Barnsley.
12 of the Owls' 28 League One wins were by a 1-0 scoreline.
Wednesday have been leading at half-time and full-time in five of their last eight games.
Both teams have scored in five of Barnsley's last six games away from Oakwell.
Nine of the Tykes' last 18 regular-season games had over 3.5 goals.
Barnsley have scored 20 goals in their last 10 away matches.
Sheffield Wednesday have had an extraordinary campaign, having been pipped to automatic promotion by Plymouth and Ipswich before overturning a four-goal deficit against Peterborough in the play-off semi-final.
The Owls are worthy favourites to seal a spot in next season's Championship but they may not have things all their own way against Barnsley, who won both of their regular-season meetings, scoring six goals.
Michael Duff's side came through an awkward semi-final tie against a dogged Bolton side 2-1 on aggregate and a more expansive contest can be expected at Wembley, where Over 2.5 Goals looks a good bet.
Wednesday's semi-final tie ended 5-5 on aggregate and they scored 81 goals in 46 regular-season fixtures, but Barnsley found the net 80 times and they can contribute to a dramatic final.
The Tykes' last three away games before the play-offs included a 5-1 win at Forest Green and a 4-4 draw at MK Dons, while their 4-2 win over Wednesday in March should give them the confidence to attack the promotion favourites.
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