" SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

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" SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby Sven » Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:05 am

Sky Bet Championship guide - your 2017/18 season preview


With kick-off in the Sky Bet Championship fast approaching, we look at who could be eyeing promotion, battling the drop and scoring the goals in our 2017/18 season preview.


England's second tier is set to be one of the most competitive at both ends, with new boys Sunderland hosting Derby in the first match of the season live on Sky Sports Football on Friday evening.

Both will be hoping to compete for promotion, but who will be their rivals? And who could be looking over their shoulder at the bottom? With the help of league sponsor Sky Bet, we pick out the teams and players to watch this season...


Title contenders

Middlesbrough are one of the favourites to make an instant return to the top flight at odds of 2/1 with Sky Bet and have installed Garry Monk at the helm. The former Swansea boss came close to taking Leeds to the play-offs last term, finishing in seventh spot.

Both the club and manager also have promotion pedigree. Monk was twice promoted as a player with Swansea - including to the Premier League after a play-off final victory against Reading in the 2010/11 season - while Middlesbrough gained automatic promotion to the top flight in the 2015/16 campaign.

Boro have spent more money this summer than in any transfer window before, and more than any other Championship club so far.

Monk has already gone about tackling the lack of goals in the squad last season. He has splashed out a club-record £15m on Britt Assombalonga - a proven scorer in the league - plus a further £15.5m on strikers Martin Braithwaite and Ashley Fletcher.


Aston Villa are also joint favourites to make a Premier League return after a lacklustre 2016/17 season in which they finished 13th, but Sky Bet are tipping the Villans along with Middlesbrough at 2/1 for automatic promotion.

Boss Steve Bruce has achieved promotion from the Championship more times than any other manager, and is plumping for experience, bringing in new club captain John Terry and Chris Samba to marshal the defence along with Ahmed Elmohamady and Glenn Whelan, who have both previously won promotion to the top flight.

Last season's Championship play-off semi-finalists Fulham and Sheffield Wednesday are also among the favourites to finally break into the Premier League.

The Owls are 3/1 with Sky Bet to win promotion this term after suffering defeat in the last two play-off campaigns while the Whites were last in the top flight in the 2013/14 campaign and sit at 11/4 for promotion.

Wednesday have added George Boyd to his ranks, as well as securing Jordan Rhodes on a permanent basis, but the latter failed to fire and the pressure will be on Carlos Carvalhal after two terms of missed opportunity. The Whites, meanwhile, have secured the returns of Tomas Kalas and Lucas Piazon on loan from Chelsea, as well as Oliver Norwood from Brighton, and key players Tom Cairney and Ryan Sessegnon have signed new deals.


Play-off hopefuls

Derby County are once again attracting good odds for promotion with Sky Bet offering them at 4/1 to finally return to the Premier League.

Over the last four years, the Rams have twice lost out in the play-offs and finished in ninth last term as they went through three different managers, although Gary Rowett will be hoping he can survive the entire campaign.

But they will be without their top scorer from last season, Tom Ince, who is now at Huddersfield while Will Hughes and Cyrus Christie have also left the club. However, having raided Hull for Curtis Davies and Tom Huddlestone, Rowett has brought in players who know what it takes to get a team over the line and into the Premier League.

Leeds United will also be hoping for a shot at the play-offs after just missing out last season and Sky Bet are backing them at 9/2 to get promoted. It is all change at Elland Road with new manager Thomas Christiansen at the helm and Andrea Radrizanni now owning the club outright after buying the remaining 50 per cent of shares from the ever-divisive Massimo Cellino.

The two have proceeded to go on somewhat of a summer spending spree, bringing in nine players including the permanent transfers of Pontus Jansson and Hadi Sacko, but can Christiansen get his new faces to gel quickly?


Hull City are tipped to be in the promotion mix, with Sky Bet offering odds of 5/1 for them to bounce straight back into the top flight. The man charged with doing so is Leonid Slutsky, whose friendship with Chelsea's billionaire owner Roman Abramovich is already paying off for the Tigers.

They have landed the season-long loan signings of Ola Aina and Michael Hector from the Blues among other arrivals but there will be concern over an exodus of players, many of whom helped the Tigers to promotion in the 2015/16 season. Davies, Huddlestone and Elmohamady have been sold to Championship rivals while Andy Robertson, Eldin Jakupovic and Harry Maguire are now at Premier League sides.


Sunderland will be hoping they can follow local rivals Newcastle and surge to promotion, with Sky Bet backing them at 11/2 to make an instant return. New manager Simon Grayson has won promotion from League One to the Championship three times through the play-offs and once automatically, although he has never managed to achieve promotion from the Championship to the Premier League.

Like Hull, a number of players have also departed this summer, including Jordan Pickford, Jermain Defoe and Seb Larsson. But Grayson will need a positive start to boost fan morale and unite the camp after a disappointing pre-season that prompted a scathing critique from one of their own players.


Dark horses

Wolves, helped by superagent Jorge Mendes, have been building up their ranks for the upcoming season after finishing in 15th spot last term, with Nuno Espirito Santo taking over the reins and Sky Bet offering odds of 100/30 for them to return to the Premier League.

The former goalkeeper has already overseen the arrival of Ruben Neves for £15.8m - a club record - as well as splashing the cash on Roderick Miranda and Barry Douglas. While a number of players have left on loan, Wolves have also brought in players from top clubs around Europe including Diogo Jota from Atletico Madrid, Ruben Vinagre from Monaco and Willy Boly from Nuno's previous club, Porto.


Norwich have yo-yoed between the Premier League and Championship over the last four seasons and will spend a second successive season in England's second tier, but Sky Bet are offering decent odds of 3/1 for another Canaries promotion.

The Canaries have also recruited well, bringing in talented youngsters Angus Gunn and Harrison Reid on loan as well as players with promotion pedigree in James Husband from Middlesbrough and Marley Watkins from Barnsley.

They have an unknown quantity at the helm in Daniel Farke, though, and the Norwich hierarchy will be hoping he can emulate his countryman David Wagner, who was also relatively unknown when arriving at Huddersfield.


Potential strugglers

Burton Albion proved the bookies wrong last season as they survived relegation but Sky Bet still have the Brewers priced as 13/8 favourites to go down this time around. They finished in 20th place last term - one point from the drop - but Nigel Clough has been strengthening the ranks with seasoned Championship players such as Stephen Warnock, Luke Murphy and Jake Buxton.

Bolton are unsurprisingly, some of the newly promoted teams are in the mix. They won automatic promotion from League One last season and Sky Bet have them as second favourites at 15/8 to drop straight back down.

Manager Phil Parkinson has twice managed in the Championship previously and neither spells were particularly successful, leaving Hull in the relegation spots when he departed as manager in December 2006 and suffering relegation with Charlton Athletic in the 2008/09 season.

The good news? The Trotters appear to have also recruited well, bringing in the likes of Will Buckley, Adam Le Fondre and Sammy Ameobi on permanent deals while talented Newcastle youngster Adam Armstrong has joined the club on loan.


Millwall who were also promoted are at 5/2 to also suffer an immediate return to League One which are the same odds Sky Bet are offering for Ipswich Town to be relegated after an ultimately disappointing 2016/17 campaign, in which they finished 16th.

Sheffield United the side side promoted as champions from League One are given a far better chance of survival by the bookies.

QPR (3/1 to be relegated), Nottingham Forest (11/2) and Birmingham (13/2) are all deemed more likely to be in bother than the Blades (8/1), whose perceived possible momentum sees them priced at 9/1 for promotion.


Barnsley could also be in danger of the drop with Sky Bet pricing them at 2/1 to return to League One despite a solid season under Paul Heckingbottom last year where they finished in 14th - just four points behind Aston Villa - but they have already lost Watkins and Marc Roberts in the summer transfer window, following the exits of Conor Hourihane and Sam Winnall in January, so any new bodies will need to adapt quickly to replace the departing talent.


Top scorers

Middlesbrough's Assombalonga leads the Sky Bet odds to take the top scorer award for the 2017/18 Championship season, priced at 8/1 to outscore his fellow strikers.

Last season's winner - Leeds forward Chris Wood - is not far behind at 9/1 with Sky Bet to take the trophy for a second successive year with Aston Villa striker Jonathan Kodjia also offered at the same odds to score the most goals in the upcoming season.

Jordan Rhodes was the Championship's second highest goalscorer for three consecutive campaigns between 2012 and 2015, but scored just three goals last season and is a 14/1 shot.


New Championship managers

Daniel Farke (Norwich)
Nuno Espirito Santo (Wolves)
Garry Monk (Middlesbrough)
Leonid Slutsky (Hull City)
Thomas Christiansen (Leeds United)
Simon Grayson (Sunderland)
Alex Neil (Preston)


Top five Championship transfers

Ruben Neves Porto - Wolves (£15.8m)
Britt Assombalonga Nottm Forest - Boro (£15m)
Jordan Rhodes Boro - Sheff Wed (£10m)
Martin Braithwaite Toulouse - Boro (£9m)
Ashley Fletcher West Ham - Boro (£6.5m)


Who are you tipping to shine - and struggle - this season in the Sky Bet Championship? Post a comment below
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" SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby arabellaman » Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:36 am

I've read this a few times but nowhere does it mention us :evil: WHY???
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby pembroke allan » Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:34 am

arabellaman wrote:I've read this a few times but nowhere does it mention us :evil: WHY???



The same reason why several other clubs are not mentioned they think mid table obscurity for us? :o
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby gardner411 » Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:48 am

There might be teams they think will be in the mid-table minority's, but would be nice to here about them too. I'm not saying we are going to set the world alight this season, but we won't be the only fans who read the whole article, just to find out your team aren't even mentioned in the guide for the Championship 17/18. Annoying :/
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby Sven » Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:52 am

gardner411 wrote:There might be teams they think will be in the mid-table minority's, but would be nice to here about them too. I'm not saying we are going to set the world alight this season, but we won't be the only fans who read the whole article, just to find out your team aren't even mentioned in the guide for the Championship 17/18. Annoying :/




You could always give us YOUR opinion on how we/others might do :thumbright: :ayatollah:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby gardner411 » Mon Jul 31, 2017 12:59 pm

Sven wrote:
gardner411 wrote:There might be teams they think will be in the mid-table minority's, but would be nice to here about them too. I'm not saying we are going to set the world alight this season, but we won't be the only fans who read the whole article, just to find out your team aren't even mentioned in the guide for the Championship 17/18. Annoying :/




You could always give us YOUR opinion on how we/others might do :thumbright: :ayatollah:


You are right ! :thumbup:

My feeling is this isn't really a guide to the Championship if they don't mention every team involved.

My own opinion is that we will finish in the top half of the table, if we were to get into the Play-Offs, it would be by the skin of our teeth. This is my logical mind.. as a fan, TOP 2 FOR THE BLUEBIRDS :lol: :ayatollah:

Will be an interesting season !
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby oohahhPaulMillar » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:05 pm

Sven wrote:
gardner411 wrote:There might be teams they think will be in the mid-table minority's, but would be nice to here about them too. I'm not saying we are going to set the world alight this season, but we won't be the only fans who read the whole article, just to find out your team aren't even mentioned in the guide for the Championship 17/18. Annoying :/




You could always give us YOUR opinion on how we/others might do :thumbright: :ayatollah:



I'm more than happy to be under the radar and not talked about in the media...I'm sure that Warnock prefers it that way as well.

The huge advantage we have going into the season is that lots of other clubs have spent a fortune (Boro, Wolves, Leeds, Villa) etc...others are in a bit of disarray (Sunderland, Hull)

Fulham, Sheff We'd and a Derby need to get off to a good start to make sure their managers stay in a job after last years disappointments are there are numerous teams with untried Championship managers who will feel the pressure after just 6/7 games if they don't get a good start.

Warnock has got the full backing of our board...A tried a tested backroom staff...the bulk of last years team who finished the season so well and a bigger and better squad than last season.

Definitely top 10 for us..and who knows how high we can finish???
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby TrueBlue99 » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:10 pm

The five teams they didn't even mention were Brentford, Bristol, Preston, Reading and of course Cardiff City.

Oh well I would rather go under the radar tbh, we are under no pressure to do well, if nothing is expected of us then it will be even better then if we do manage to get a playoff spot or even potentially better.

Who cares if they dont give us a mention, most of us here feel we are in for a good season and so we should. As long as we dont get off to anywhere near as bad a start we had last season with Trollope then I firmly believe we should have no problem gathering the points we will need to be a contender for promotion.

Of course there loads more clubs with expensive signings and that splashing the cash to make a charge for the premier league, but that way won't always bring success as we know. There is no doubting there are clubs better equipped than us to go up but that was also the case for Huddersfield last season and for Leicester to win the Prem the season before that, somehow they did it against all the odds and there is absolutely no reason why we can't 'be up against it' and pull something off.

I am very much looking forward to this season and I for one am glad that everything involving the club is positive at this moment in time.

I can't wait for it all to get going again, roll on Burton on Saturday :ayatollah: :bluescarf: :bluebird:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:13 pm

Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby gardner411 » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:44 pm

ealing_ayatollah wrote:Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Great post :thumbup:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:51 pm

gardner411 wrote:
ealing_ayatollah wrote:Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Great post :thumbup:

Cheers Dude :ayatollah:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby Tony Blue Williams » Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:36 pm

gardner411 wrote:
ealing_ayatollah wrote:Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Great post :thumbup:


I agree very good read :thumbup:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby oohahhPaulMillar » Mon Jul 31, 2017 3:29 pm

ealing_ayatollah wrote:Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Pretty much agree with a lot of that...the big spending and fancied teams are going to be under massive pressure to be in the top 2/3 after 10 games...

As they can't all be up there I fully expect some Managerial sackings by the end of Octobe..There are still a huge number of trigger happy owners about who have stacked a fortune on getting promoted
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby MoodyBluebird » Mon Jul 31, 2017 5:21 pm

ealing_ayatollah wrote:Disagree with a lot of this but it's all about opinions :thumbup:

My two pence...

A lot of people have Villa pegged this year as going straight up but I'm not so sure - somewhere between 4 and 8th for them for me. Expensively assembled squads don't always mean promotion and despite Bruce getting Hull City up he has a pretty negative mindset and we were pretty much the last side to go up playing such defensively minded football. Sides like Boro, Bournemouth, Brighton, Watford and Norwich all got promoted whilst being pretty on the eye and this seems to be the norm now.

I'd go with Boro and Fulham at this point but wouldn't be surprised to see someone much less fancied like Forest or even dare I say it us gatecrashing the top two this year. A lot of teams will take points off each other at the top this season so it could be quite unpredictable.

In terms of the playoffs predictions in the article - Hull - can't see it sold too many and not recruited well, lower mid table. Leeds - nope as much as I hate to admit it the Jack did a decent job there and should have been kept on - another merry go round season of managers and mid table mediocrity for them, Derby - nah they'll just do a Cardiff *ahem* I mean a Derby and bottle it at the death, Huddlestone is a good signing but will he replace Ince's goals (both personal and those he sets up) and finally Sunderland are going to do well to stay in the division and would be a good bet for dropping straight through.

Very hard season to pick a playoff four from this season so I'll bottle it and say it could be any of the following 6 : Wolves, Us, Reading, Forest, Derby and Wednesday.

Put a gun to my head and i'd call a top 6 of:

Fulham
Boro
Wolves
Reading
Cardiff
Forest

No such thing as dark horses in this division anymore but Norwich could be there or there abouts in the playoff mix as well and as I mentioned above I think Us and Forest could catch a few off guard.

Think there could be as many as 10 teams fighting for promotion and possibly 8 or even more battling against the drop which will leave very few tables destined for mid-table mediocrity - but if anyone is nailed on for it then for me it's Brum, Preston, and Brentford who'll be hitting the beach first this summer after a fairly dull end to the season (bit like we had last year!)

At the other end huge task for Burton to stay up again, whilst Bristol have lost Tammy Abraham's goals which pretty much kept them up last year, and Sunderland I think will be down there - which I know a lot of folks will disagree with.

Other strugglers this season for me Millwall and Barnsley and QPR could be in for a miserable season but won't realistically be in any danger come what May.

Bolton I think in Ameobi and Le Fondre have an archetypal front two that will be just not quite shit enough to see them in real danger but they'll flirt with the idea of being part of the relegation battle from time to time.

Sheffield Utd will be the typical side promoted from League One who will have a great start and think they are going to do back to back promotions and folks will talk about it around November and then they wont be able to buy a goal over Winter plummet back down the table, sack Wilder bring back Adkins who will steady the ship and they'll finish around 17th (can't get any more specific than that :-))

Gun to my head bottom 6:

QPR
Barnsley
Millwall
Sunderland
Bristol
Burton Albion

I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Oy Ealing haven't you got anything better to do with your time :ayatollah:
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby Tony Blue Williams » Mon Jul 31, 2017 6:27 pm

oohahhPaulMillar wrote:
Pretty much agree with a lot of that...the big spending and fancied teams are going to be under massive pressure to be in the top 2/3 after 10 games...

As they can't all be up there I fully expect some Managerial sackings by the end of Octobe..There are still a huge number of trigger happy owners about who have stacked a fortune on getting promoted


I agree with your appraisal there will be a number of sackings by October/November. Fingers crossed I'm hoping that the Neil Warnock effect will work massively in our favour by providing stability whilst we take advantage instability elsewhere.
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:36 pm

MoodyBluebird wrote:
ealing_ayatollah wrote:
I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Oy Ealing haven't you got anything better to do with your time :ayatollah:


This close to the season hard to think about anything else! :thumbup:

Haven't you got a hedge to fall into or a holiday to plan or something? ;)
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby TopCat CCFC » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:40 pm

No Easy Games In The Championship ;)
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:49 pm

Tony Blue Williams wrote:
oohahhPaulMillar wrote:
Pretty much agree with a lot of that...the big spending and fancied teams are going to be under massive pressure to be in the top 2/3 after 10 games...

As they can't all be up there I fully expect some Managerial sackings by the end of Octobe..There are still a huge number of trigger happy owners about who have stacked a fortune on getting promoted


I agree with your appraisal there will be a number of sackings by October/November. Fingers crossed I'm hoping that the Neil Warnock effect will work massively in our favour by providing stability whilst we take advantage instability elsewhere.


It's a very good point at least a handful of the fancied teams who have spent will have an average start at best - they can't all get off to a flier - and we'll soon see the managerial merry-go round kick in especially amongst those teams that have spent big who will have all the pressure on them.

Stability this season may well be a factor in who goes up - and bizarely we are probably one of the most stable sides in the championship at the moment - can't see Warnock going anywhere and it's his squad now so I expect there to be a good togetheness and unity amongst the lads - something that Warnock seems to build wherever he goes :ayatollah:

I really can't believe I'm seriously prediciting us to be one of the most stable sides in the Champ whilst we still have Vinnie T in charge - the Warnock effect really is a truly magnificent thing to behold! :thumbup: :notworthy:
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:53 pm

TopCat CCFC wrote:No Easy Games In The Championship ;)

Aye it's 11 v 11, A Game of Two Halves and don't forget that Goals Win Games.

A long, long way away from young lads playing in the park, jumpers down for goals posts next goal the winner cos i got to be home for tea :old:

Nice ;)
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Re: SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW

Postby MoodyBluebird » Tue Aug 01, 2017 9:32 am

ealing_ayatollah wrote:
MoodyBluebird wrote:
ealing_ayatollah wrote:
I'm probably woefully off but thems me thoughts - should be an exciting season :thumbup:


Oy Ealing haven't you got anything better to do with your time :ayatollah:


This close to the season hard to think about anything else! :thumbup:

Haven't you got a hedge to fall into or a holiday to plan or something? ;)


Charming, anybody think you've been dragged up ! Give me a ring when you're free this week.
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby pembroke allan » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:32 am

Brum good bet to struggle or go down along with arry getting the chop by Xmas! :occasion5:
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby rossblue » Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:18 pm

just reading these predictions is getting me excited for the season. just wish I had a bit more knowledge of our team. I'm only a newb, the pompey and villa game will be my families first. :bluescarf: :ayatollah: :bluebird:
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby ealing_ayatollah » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:33 pm

rossblue wrote:just reading these predictions is getting me excited for the season. just wish I had a bit more knowledge of our team. I'm only a newb, the pompey and villa game will be my families first. :bluescarf: :ayatollah: :bluebird:


Welcome to a life of heartache punctuated by the odd moment here and there scattered across the decades that somehow makes it all worthwhile :lol:

Seriously, I honestly reckon this season is gonna be a cracker not had this much buzz around the side since Malky's second season - should be a hell of a first season and one to get you hooked for sure dude! :ayatollah: :bluescarf:
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Re: " SKY BET CHAMPIONSHIP GUIDE AND PREVIEW "

Postby rossblue » Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:14 pm

ealing_ayatollah wrote:
rossblue wrote:just reading these predictions is getting me excited for the season. just wish I had a bit more knowledge of our team. I'm only a newb, the pompey and villa game will be my families first. :bluescarf: :ayatollah: :bluebird:


Welcome to a life of heartache punctuated by the odd moment here and there scattered across the decades that somehow makes it all worthwhile :lol:

Seriously, I honestly reckon this season is gonna be a cracker not had this much buzz around the side since Malky's second season - should be a hell of a first season and one to get you hooked for sure dude! :ayatollah: :bluescarf:

thank you buddy. absolutely buzzing for the start
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