Monday, September 24, 2018

Championship Preview – Matchday Seven

Deke Hardman in Editorial, English Championship 13 Sep 2018

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The Football League returns on Friday evening, with matchday seven kicking off with the Midlands derby between Birmingham City and West Bromwich Albion.

The Baggies remain one of the favourites for promotion despite losing two of their six games so far and victory at St Andrews would see them rocket up to third place.

Birmingham must be looking at their local rivals in envy as they remain in search of their first win of the campaign while they have failed to score in five of their last six games in all competitions.

With visits to Bramall Lane and Elland Road up next for Garry Monk’s men, they will be desperate to get something this weekend though the odds are stacked against them.

Scrap

Few would bet against them being involved in relegation scrap, as they have been in three of the past five seasons and they can currently be backed at a price of 7/4 to finish the campaign in the bottom three.

Leaders Leeds United, who are in pole position ahead of Middlesbrough on goal difference travel to Millwall while the Teesiders are at Norwich City.

Goal difference also separates the Lions and the Canaries while Stoke City and Preston North End are also just a point clear of the relegation zone.

Stoke face a tricky trip to Sheffield Wednesday while Preston will be hoping to pile pressure on bottom-of-the-table Reading.

Struggle

Ipswich are also struggling with their last win coming at Reading back in April and though they can leapfrog Hull City if they beat the Tigers at Portman Road.

Queens Park Rangers travel to Bolton Wanderers, who are in touching distance of the play-offs after racking up eleven points thus far.

Swansea City will also be looking to climb into the top six as they host a Nottingham Forest side fresh from their first defeat of the season.

That loss for the Reds came at Brentford, and the Bees welcome Wigan Athletic on Saturday looking to tighten their grip on a top six spot.

Chase

Sixth plays third as Bristol City take on Sheffield United, with the Blades looking for a fifth straight league victory while Derby County will be keen to keep up their winning fun as they take on Rotherham United.

The Millers have lost three of their last four games in form that supports their status as relegation favourites.

Finally, the weekend’s action concludes at Ewood Park where Blackburn Rovers take on Aston Villa.

The pair are among a clutch of sides with an eye of the top six and the visitors could hand debuts to attacking pair Yannick Bolasie and Tammy Abraham, who completed their moves to Villa Park ahead of last month’s deadline.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Deke Hardman


Freelance football writer with a love of the game that goes back to the mid nineties when both his beloved Nottingham Forest and England had genuine hope of acheiving some level of success. A regular contributor to both SoccerNews.com and FreeBetting.com, Deke also dabbles in music journalism with his heart and head still stuck in the latter years of the twentieth century.

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