Exciting game week is in front of us, Steve McClaren will try to keep his job with a win against Wigan, while some managers are proving that they were the right choice for their clubs. Last season we had a defensive football making it to top 6, but this season we see more and more attacking football as new managers are bringing the new style of play to Championship. These are the predictions for this Championship gameweek.
Middlesbrough vs WBA
On Friday night we have maybe the biggest match in this Gameweek. Middlesbrough will face West Bromwich Albion at home and it will be a big test for both sides. Middlesbrough is still sharing the first place with Leeds United but West Bromwich Albion managed to get in incredible form. Baggies scored 11 goals in their last two matches, 7 against QPR and 4 against Norwich. I expect this game to be much tougher than their last two; Middlesbrough is well organized in defence and managed to keep three clean sheets so far, more than any other Championship side. I don’t expect Middlesbrough to keep another clean sheet on Friday, but I expect them not to lose at home against WBA.
Aston Villa vs Reading
Reading is just tragic this season, they had a 2-0 lead against Blackburn and they’ve managed to get only a point. And that’s their first point so far. Aston Villa had a tough match against Brentford, but their performance was excellent, they’ve got a last minute equalizer so they are still unbeaten this season. Jack Grealish and Jonathan Kodjia are forming a great partnership, so it should be expected for at least one of them to score against Reading. I expect Aston Villa to keep their first clean sheet this season.
Aston Villa to win: 2-0
Blackburn vs Brentford
Although Blackburn can be really dangerous at home, this time I think Brentford is having a better chance to win. After seeing Brentford against Aston Villa I was amazed, I never saw them perform that good before and they can really achieve big things this season if they continue that form. Neal Maupay managed to get 5 goals and three assists in their first four games, that’s an amazing record and with that form he can easily score more than 20 this season. Blackburn is still unbeaten, and if they lose against Brentford that wouldn’t change the fact that they had an amazing start of the season.
Brentford to win: 1-2
Bolton vs Sheffield United
What really left me with no comment is an excellent start that Bolton had. They have 10 points so far, just like Middlesbrough and Leeds; they’ve managed to get two clean sheets and there is no reason for them not to continue that form against Sheffield United. What they needed to do is to sort out their defence, and it seems that they’ve managed to do that successfully. Sheffield United won their last two games, I expect them to score in this one, but I am not so optimistic about them winning against Bolton.
Bolton to win: 2-1
Derby vs Preston
There have been only four games so far and Derby County can still find their form, but what worries me is the fact that they don’t show much energy in their performance. Another win would be a big boost for the team, but can Derby County win this one? I don’t think so. Preston hasn’t showed much so far and they struggle not to concede, but they are a tough opponent and I expect them to score against Derby County on Saturday.
Norwich vs Leeds
The fact that there is, once again, TV coverage for Leeds United can make every neutral football fan happy. They play attractive football, they always try to score and they make chances in a blink of an eye. Norwich is certainly going to provide a good fight, they are excellent in attack, they’ve managed to score 8 goals in their first four matches and they play at home. Leeds United will once again go for a win; they already had a draw in Wales and this time they will work harder to get all three points. I expect Kemar Roofe to start again over Patrick Bamford as the striker has 4 goals in 4 games for Leeds United so far.
Leeds to win: 1-2
QPR vs Wigan
Is Steve McClaren the first Championship manager to get sacked this season? Unfortunately, I think he is, and it maight happen after this game against Wigan on Saturday. QPR has to win, they lost all of their first four games and they’ve conceded 13 goals so far. Wigan had an amazing 3-0 away win against Stoke City and there is no reason for them not to continue that form against QPR. Both Will Grigg and Nick Powell are in form for Wigan and I expect at least one of them to score against QPR.
Wigan to win: 0-2
Sheffield Wednesday vs Ipswich
Can Paul Hurst finally get his first Championship win? I think that he can. Sheffield Wednesday won their last game against Millwall, but they still haven’t showed much this season. Ipswich is having some bad results, but they play an attacking football and their performance always looks dangerous. It’s important for fans to have faith in Paul Hurst as he is still young and promising manager, players need more time to get used to his style of play, but I believe that Paul Hurst is about to get his first Championship win against Sheffield Wednesday.
Ipswich to win: 0-2
Stoke vs Hull
What’s happening to Paul Hurst in Ipswich is happening to Gary Rowett with Stoke City, he is still waiting for his first win and game against Hull might be a perfect opportunity for him to achieve that. For me, the biggest problem that Stoke City has is the fact that they don’t have a proper striker, Benik Afobe needs a little time to get used to playing for Stoke and you can rely on Peter Crouch coming in as a sub and scoring every time. However, Stoke is still having a much better squad than Hull, they play at home and considering the fact that Hull is awful in defence, Stoke City is having a better chance of winning this one.
Stoke to win: 2-0
Swansea vs Bristol City
Although Bristol City has won their last away game against QPR, it will be much harder to compete with Swansea. The fact that even Leeds couldn’t manage to get a win is telling us how strong Swansea is when they play at home. Oliver McBurnie scored both goals for Swansea against Leeds United and the young striker seems very strong and dangerous in attack. Swansea is well organized at a back so I expect them to keep a clean sheet against Bristol City. Although Lee Johnson is an excellent manager, I expect Graham Potter to get all three points in this one.
Swansea to win: 1-0
Nottingham Forest vs Birmingham
Still no win for Garry Monk, while Nottingham Forest remains unbeaten after the first four games. Aitor Karanka managed to get only one win so far, but their team is full of new players and they need time to start winning. El Arbi Soudani scored most for Nottingham Forest so far and he might get a start against Birmingham. Birmingham is showing excellent performance in every single game they play, but they are struggling to score and it will be hard for them to play against a defensive side like Nottingham Forest.
Nottingham Forest to win: 2-0
Rotherham vs Millwall
On Sunday, Rotherham will meet Millwall. Rotherham lost against Hull in their last game, while Millwall managed to lose against Sheffield Wednesday. Millwall needs to improve their away performance in order to get back in the form they had last season, and game against Rotherham is the best opportunity for them to achieve that. Rotherham is struggling to score and it will be hard for them to find a back of the net against a team that’s well organized in defence like Millwall.
Millwall to win: 0-1