Derby County will be looking to consolidate their position in the top when they travel to Preston North End on Friday evening – the opening game in matchday thirty.
The Rams have won just two of their previous seven league games but remain in sixth place, though anything other than a victory at Deepdale would leave the door open for the chasing pack, not least Bristol City who are ready to capitalise on any slip ups from Frank Lampard’s side.
The Robins are unbeaten in ten in the league, and as a bonus are also in the fifth round of the FA Cup having beaten Bolton Wanderers last weekend.
They host Swansea City this weekend – and the Welsh outfit could in fact leapfrog their opponents if they clinch victory.
Aston Villa and Nottingham Forest both won last time out and are both four points off the top six ahead of their trips to Reading and Birmingham City respectively while Blackburn Rovers, who are in eighth travel to Brentford.
Fourth meets fifth at the Hawthorns with West Bromwich Albion hosting a Middlesbrough side who sit three points below them.
Darren Moore’s side also lead the pair in the market for promotion, with Bet 365 offering a price of 11/10 for them to make an immediate return to the Premier League after they were relegated last May.
Third place Sheffield United will look to at the very least close the gap between themselves and the top two as they welcome Bolton to Bramall Lane.
The Blades have taken just one point from the last six but could well end the day in the automatic promotion places if they win and one other result in particular goes their way.
Two other sides who will certainly still feel they have a chance of making the top six face each other at the KCOM Stadium where Hull City take on Stoke City while Queens Park Rangers, who sit in between those two sides, travel to Wigan Athletic.
Steve Bruce finally takes charge of Sheffield Wednesday this weekend, and his first challenge is to overcome bottom-of-the-table Ipswich Town while Millwall and Rotherham United, who are both outside of the bottom three but looking over their shoulders, face-off at the Den.
Finally, the day’s action concludes with a mouth-watering clash between the division’s top two – Leeds United and Norwich City, at Elland Road.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side go into the game top of the table though a victory of two clear goals or more for the Canaries would see them leapfrog the title favourites into first place.
Leeds have lost three of their last five league games while Daniel Farke’s men have won just one of their last six.
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