2022-3 League Two Promotion Prospects


By BoroGuide

Time flies when you’re having fun. The current campaign is now past the halfway mark. Well, duh – of course it is! The 2022 calendar now sits in the (recycling) bin and the 2023 calendar takes its place on your kitchen wall. Or something. When it’s time to usher in a new year, 50 per cent of the league season is done and dusted. And what a curious situation Boro’ find ourselves in; second in the table would you believe? So, at this maturing stage of the campaign, let’s take a look at how the 2022-3 League Two promotion prospects are shaping up.

As soon as you hit the halfway stage of a season, two things happen. One – people stop talking in terms of fluky or dodgy starts to things. We’re five months and 23+ games in. Things have long since settled into a rhythm. Not that it means a team can’t go on a plunge or surge over the second half of the season. We’ve done it before, haven’t we? The second thing is that all the league oppo are typically boxed off at least once. We can go even further too; our time with Crawley and Gillingham now fully spent for at least one more campaign.

At what point, however, do you start to dream… or panic?

2022-3 League Two Promotion Prospects

For the ‘play-it-safe’ type of punter, all eyes are probably still on Leyton Orient. The idea of points on the board is a strong one in football and it means the current pacesetters are favourites with the major bookies right now. With some, you’ll even find the Os being odds-on to clinch the title. For us, that feels a little premature. For a start, the East London side are without a win in three and have failed to score in that same period. No doubt they’ll pick back up again very soon – but let’s hope that waits until after 21 January for that to happen, eh?

Why the 21st? Well, that’s when we’re due to meet them again. We only have one league fixture between now and then due to our FA Cup commitments at Aston Villa. But our meeting with the Os at the Lamex could be pivotal in terms of which way the League Two title could end up going. It sounds weird to be talking about Stevenage as potential title contenders after the last few seasons. But an epic first half to the campaign means most bookies you’ll find at this site are offering us as the most likely to deny Leyton Orient the top prize.

We can’t discount Northampton Town by any stretch. Three points at the expense of the Os saw them start 2023 with a bang. Smart money when it comes to the 2022-3 League Two promotion battle may well be going on the Cobblers’ – whether as champions or coming inside the top three. Boro’ still have to play them too, which is one fixture that we’d probably write off given our piss-poor record against them. They are very much a strong contender, however; daylight now starting to emerge between themselves and the playoff places.

2022-3 League Two promotion candidates: Best of the rest?

In pole position outside the top three are Carlisle United, Bradford City, and Mansfield Town. Is this going to be the year the Bantams finally make good on their promise and break out of the fourth tier? Can the Stags avenge their playoff final defeat to Port Vale in May? Or will the Cumbrian side make their return to the third tier for the first time since they came down with us in 2014? The current odds in the promotion market go with Bradford City, then Mansfield.

Why haven’t we included Swindon Town, we hear no-one of note ask. Well, the Robins might hold the final playoff place as we write this, but the bookies don’t care about that. In fact, it isn’t even those immediately outside the top seven – Doncaster Rovers, Walsall, or Barrow – who curry favour with the folks in charge of the odds. Instead, firmly in the mix are Stockport County and Salford City. At present, the two sides are 13th and 11th respectively.

For the Ammies, that tends to be their ballpark when we get to the end of the season. Yet, the odds on offer right now suggest they’re eighth most likely to go up come the end of term. Meanwhile, the Hatters are now starting to show glimpses of why they were hotly tipped at the start of the season. Sort of. Their games in hand will take them into the top seven if both go their way – but does that warrant them being fourth favourites (overall) for promotion?

Some places will even offer you odds as short as 68/5 on Stockport winning the division!

In conclusion…

The 2022-3 League Two promotion battle is far from over. While we’re slightly down on the idea of Stockport storming it, we can’t forget that we were 18th or something silly when the 2010-1 campaign reached its midway point. And the bookies aren’t always right. That’s why some people occasionally make money off them. The bottom line is that on (and off?) the pitch, Boro’ are looking good for a tilt at promotion this season.

Just five months and 22 more games to see if we can make it stick.

Remember – when the fun stops, stop. Be gamble aware.

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