Regarded at times as the “toughest league in the world” the Championship has a consistent reputation to maintain. However as of yet the 17/18 campaign has failed to impress. Besides the rampant progress of Wolves and the surprise packages of both Cardiff and Bristol City, the league has failed to produce the same kind of excitement it may of in previous years.
As previously mentioned Nuno Espírito Santo’s Wolves side have simply torn the division to shreds. Impressive additions such as Rúben Neves and Diogo Jota have gelled quicker than some outsiders may of imagined and with Wolves already impressive start, it’s no wonder they now find themselves topping the Championship. Notable mentions go to Cardiff and Bristol City who are positioned nicely themselves, although it’s fair to say it would be a travesty if Wanderers did not end up a Premier League team by the end of the season.
When looking at the teams in and around the play-offs, the usual suspects do occur. The likes of Derby and Aston Villa fill two of the four spots and Sheffield United – who had looked to have cemented their place in the top positions, now cling onto sixth spot. Although Leeds, Ipswich and Preston are now breathing down their neck. In fact one of the most notable absentees from the top six is Middlesbrough. Last seasons Premier League exile didn’t last as long as they may of hoped and the Championships “big spenders” are now trying to claw back the five point gap between them and the top six, with Garry Monk under serious pressure.
It could be worse for Boro though, two of their fellow relegation rivals from last season find themselves within a few points of the relegation zone. Hull City have recently appointed Nigel Adkins after sacking Leonid Slutsky and similarly for Sunderland they sacked Simon Grayson and hope to stop the rot with Wales hero Chris Coleman.
Nonetheless it seems the final 3 positions in the league are more or less confirmed. Despite the positivity of Bolton’s transfer embargo being lifted they find themselves joint bottom. Possibly the biggest surprise of the relegation candidates are Birmingham City who had also spent big under car window “wheeler dealer” Harry Redknapp. Who have somewhat gotten worse since he was sacked. Steve Cotterill now holds the reigns at St Andrews but is struggling to make his mark on a side that seems to have decided on its own destiny. Nigel Clough would argue Burton stand the best chance out of the three but with one of the smallest budgets in the Championship but it’s difficult to see the Brewers keeping themselves out of the dreaded three.
It may be a shock to some Championship spectators but as a whole the league has not taken off the way some would of hoped. Indeed as of now it doesn’t compare to the likes of the 2014/15 season or the 15/16 but knowing the Championship it could still be spun on its head.
AllOutFootball fans, what are your thoughts on the Championship? Are the positions of importance already decided or is there twists and turns yet to happen? Make sure to comment your thoughts below!
featured image credit Hull Daily Mail