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Which Championship teams have a REAL chance for promotion?
10 January 2018, 12:42
Which Championship teams have a REAL chance for promotion?

As every season, the English Championship has plenty of twists and turns. One of the great things about the second division of English football is that nearly any team can be beaten on a given day.

It makes for exciting football, and it means teams can earn promotion to the Premier League when it wasn't expected when the season kicked off.

The 2017-18 season has one sure thing going for it right now, and that is Wolverhampton Wanderers are running away from the pack. Wolves not only lead the league by 12 points currently, but the team is on a spending spree that could see them land AC Milan player Andre Silva for £34 million. Times have changed in the Championship when it comes to spending, and Wolves are proving they are a Premier League side both on and off the pitch.

As Wolverhampton looks likely to seal promotion back to the top-flight this term, which teams have a real chance at winning promotion alongside them? Two other spots are up for grabs, but which clubs are getting them?

The current table sees just six points separating Derby in second place and Leeds United in sixth. Making it possible that any one of five teams could land that final automatic playoff place. Along with Derby and Leeds, Cardiff City, Bristol City and Aston Villa are fighting it out.

Cardiff is lucky to still be in a playoff place as the Bluebirds have lost four straight games. The team's form has been woeful of late. The team has allowed nine goals and scored just three times during their losing run. Bristol City are also experiencing a dip in form. Two straight losses, including a 5-0 New Year's Day loss to Aston Villa, has the team reeling. It hasn't helped that the side are currently playing in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup. The tournament has stretched their resources thin in the last few weeks.

Aston Villa and Leeds have been slightly more consistent over their last few matches. Villa have secured two wins in their last two matches. Manager Steve Bruce rested his key players in the FA Cup third round, and despite losing to Peterborough, the veteran manager knows promotion to the Premier League is greater than a run in the competition. Bruce has guided teams to the Premier League previously and did it most recently with Hull. Villa have the best goal differential outside of the top two teams (+14). More consistency and fewer injuries should see them catch Derby.

The teams in second through sixth can't rest on their laurels. The Championship is extremely tight all the way to 12th placed Ipswich. Only seven points separate Ipswich from the final playoff place occupied by Leeds. By the time the season ends in May, there could be a complete shake up of sides competing for the final playoff position.

Sheffield United, Middlesbrough, Preston, Fulham, Bretford and Ipswich are all trying to catch the rest of the promotion pack. Sheffield United have an opportunity for back-to-back promotions, but the Blades have lost the most matches of the top 11 teams in the league (10). Their dropped points could be the difference in finishing just outside the top six.

The only certainty in the Championship is uncertainty, but it makes for an exciting end to the regular season. With Wolves nailed on for promotion, two places are up for grabs. Based on Bruce's managerial experience at Aston Villa, it is difficult to look past the West Midlands club for promotion. Meanwhile, a surprise may be in store as Leeds United could return to the top-flight for the first time since 2004.

Predictions for Championship

Home team - Away team Forebet
flag_2 CH
Derby County
Blackburn Rovers

18/09/2018 19:45
1
flag_2 CH
Leeds United
Preston NE

18/09/2018 19:45
1
flag_2 CH
Wigan Athletic
Hull City

18/09/2018 19:45
1
flag_2 CH
Aston Villa
Rotherham

18/09/2018 19:45
1

England Championship - predictions, tips, statistics

Featured match

Home team - Away team Forebet
flag_13  CL
FC Barcelona
PSV Eindhoven

18/09/2018 17:55
1

Regular Season
OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
1. Leeds United 15 7 4 3 0 15 5 10
2. Brentford FC 14 7 4 2 1 14 6 8
3. Bristol City 14 7 4 2 1 12 6 6
4. Middlesbrough 14 7 4 2 1 9 3 6
5. Sheffield Utd 12 7 4 0 3 12 9 3
6. Swansea City 12 7 3 3 1 7 5 2
7. Derby County 12 7 4 0 3 10 9 1
8. West Bromwich 11 7 3 2 2 16 10 6
9. Sheffield Wed 11 7 3 2 2 11 11 0
10. Bolton Wanderers 11 7 3 2 2 9 10 -1
11. Wigan Athletic 10 7 3 1 3 11 10 1
12. Aston Villa 10 7 2 4 1 12 12 0
13. Blackburn Rovers 10 7 2 4 1 8 9 -1
14. Rotherham 9 7 3 0 4 6 11 -5
15. Nottingham F. 8 7 1 5 1 8 8 0
16. Norwich City 8 7 2 2 3 10 12 -2
17. Hull City 7 7 2 1 4 8 11 -3
18. QPR 7 7 2 1 4 5 14 -9
19. Millwall FC 6 7 1 3 3 7 9 -2
20. Stoke City 6 7 1 3 3 9 13 -4
21. Birmingham City 5 7 0 5 2 5 7 -2
22. Reading FC 5 7 1 2 4 8 11 -3
23. Preston NE 5 7 1 2 4 7 12 -5
24. Ipswich Town 3 7 0 3 4 5 11 -6

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