Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Championship Preview – Matchday 3

Deke Hardman in Editorial, English Championship 17 Aug 2018

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Table toppers Middlesbrough will be keen to continue their unbeaten start to the Championship campaign as they travel to Bristol City on Saturday afternoon.

The North-East side, who needed penalties to get past League Two Notts County in their EFL League Cup first round tie on Tuesday evening can move onto ten points with a victory here while anything less than that will leave the door open for a whole host of sides to claim top spot.

Meanwhile to Robins are licking their wounds after crashing out of the cup to Plymouth Argyle.

Favourites

The team in pole position displace Boro are Leeds United, who are now favourites to win the division following their 4-1 hammering of fellow promotion hopefuls last weekend.

Few would bet against them making it three league wins from three as they host relegation favourites Rotherham United, though the Millers will be in buoyant mood after beating Ipswich Town last time out in the league and Wigan Athletic three days later.

Paul Warne’s side can be backed at a price of 7/1 to cause the shock of the day and triumph against their Yorkshire rivals.

Like Leeds, Aston Villa and Swansea City have began the campaign with back-to-back wins and they face Ipswich Town and Birmingham City respectively – the South Wales sides’ trip to the midlands kicking off the weekend’s action on Friday evening.

Drama

Having beaten Bury 10-9 on spot-kicks midweek, Nottingham Forest look to continue their unbeaten run at Wigan while Brentford host Sheffield Wednesday on Sunday afternoon.

Bolton Wanderers welcome pointless Reading to the Marcon Stadium, looking to continue their solid start while West Bromwich Albion host the division’s only other side yet to get off the mark – Queens Park Rangers.

Saturday’s late kick-off sees Preston North End take on pre-season title favourites Stoke City, who have thus far managed to take just one point from six available.

Recovery

Derby County responded to last weeks defeat at home to Leeds by beating Oldham Athletic in the EFL Cup and they will look to get back to winning ways in the league as they travel to Millwall.

Sheffield United and Hull City faced each other on Tuesday evening in yet another tie that went to penalties, with the Tigers triumphing.

Nigel Adkins side face Blackburn Rovers this weekend while the Blades entertain Norwich City.

The draw for the second round of the EFL Cup tool place on Thursday evening and of the twenty-five ties, only two are all Championship affairs.

Leeds host Preston and Derby travel to Hull while some of the other eye catching fixtures include Rotherham’s trip to Everton and five-time winners Aston Villa’s trip to Burton Albion while Nottingham Forest, who have lifted the trophy on four occasions host Newcastle United.

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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