Another weekend passes in the Championship and here FantasySports.co.uk takes its regular look and update from the most exciting and competitive league in English football :
WOLVES FIRMLY IN THE DRIVING SEAT IN PROMOTION DRIVE
A 3-2 home win over Preston North End wont be the most amazing of results, but it was a highly important one, as Wolves made it 4 wins out of 5 games played and maintained their position at the head of the table – only 2 points clear of the hard chasing Cardiff and Sheff Utd, but more importantly now 8 points clear of Bristol City in 7th place. Wolves have won 9 of their 13 games played and are the division’s joint top scorers, justifying the bookies view that they are firm favourites to win the league. Wolves were 3-0 up before a Preston revival made it interesting, but that win on the back of an impressive result over Aston Villa means the Wolves are looking like the team to beat this season.
BIG GUNS STARTING TO FIND FORM AND MOVE UP LEAGUE
After stuttering starts to the season, it is noticeable that some teams expected pre season to be in the promotion mix come next May, are now looking more like the teams they should be and are progressing up the table with ominous ease. Aston Villa, Derby and Norwich are all in a rich vein of form, with only Villa having suffered a defeat in their last 5 games, and that, as mentioned, at the hands of leaders Wolves. Derby and Norwich have both come out of a tough run of games unbeaten and wins over their respective local rivals will enhance momentum….but the two teams meet at Carrow Road on Saturday in a tasty looking encounter.
SUNDERLAND SCORE 3 AWAY FROM HOME – BUT STILL CANT WIN
Half time at Griffin Park and the scoreline stood at Brentford 1-3 Sunderland – surely this was the game that would breathe life into the Black Cats and start to drag themselves away from the foot of the table? Afraid not, as the Bees found goals to make it a 3-3 draw and keep Sunderland firmly entrenched in the relegation zone and with just the one win all season from their 13 games played. The only, real, saving grace is that they are nothing like cut adrift of their fellow strugglers…indeed they are ‘only’ a win behind Barnsley, who are sat relatively pretty in 19th place. A sad state of affairs for a club so used to dining at footballs top table…but one who you truly fear could sink further without much of a trace.
FORM IS TEMPORARY – IS CLASS PERMANENT?
Fans of Middlesbrough, Sheffield Wednesday, Reading and Ipswich will all hope so….along with poor Bolton, Sunderland and Burton Albion. These are the teams who currently reside at the bottom of the Championship form table (last five games played) and it makes for poor reading, especially for the first set of teams mentioned – all of whom harboured hopes of a promotion push or had a good start to the season. There is still plenty of time yet, but this is a division where its vital you keep pace with the leading group, as ground is very hard to make up.
PREMIER LEAGUE TAKING NOTE OF TOP SCORERS
With the January transfer window fast approaching, many a Championship club will be looking to safeguard their prize assets – with goalscorers the main commodity and those most likely to be head hunted by maybe not the Premier League big boys, but certainly the mid to low table sides who can offer decent wages and top flight football that all Championship clubs want for themselves. Glances are already being cast at Wolves’ Brazilian sensation Leo Bonatini, who with assists included heads the top scorers table in the Championship….but also making waves are Bobby Reid and Famara Diedhiou (both Bristol City), Jordan Hugill (Preston) and Jarrod Bowen (Hull) – along with the usual suspects like Britt Assombalonga, Matej Vydra, Albert Adomah and Gary Hooper. Expect transfer rumours to gather pace as January approaches….and hope your star player isn’t amongst those to leave!
Join us next week for our next review of the Championship!
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