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Match Previews

CHAMPIONSHIP: WEEKEND PREVIEW

31 October 2014


NEW MEN IN CHARGE

Cardiff City will be looking to continue their impressive home form when they welcome Leeds to the Welsh capital on Saturday. They will be facing a Leeds United side that have a new man in charge. Neil Redfearn will take charge of the Whites once more for this weekend’s clash. It will be a tough opener for him as City have the third best home record in the division, with five wins in seven outings, including winning both of Russell Slade’s home games. A win for the Bluebirds could lift them to just one point of the play-off places. Redfearn’s previous spell at the helm saw Leeds remain unbeaten throughout his four match’s in-charge.

Lee Clark will take charge of his first Blackpool game just 12 days after being relieved of his duties at Birmingham. His first challenge is a tricky tie against Mick McCarthy’s Tractor Boys. The Tangerine’s have just six points so far, bottom of the table and five points below Clark’s former employers. Ipswich Town will be confident of getting a result as they have just one defeat in their last 10, that coming at Cardiff City Stadium.

He may have been in charge since 18 September, but Kit Symons has finally been given the Fulham job on a permanent basis. After five wins in his nine games in charge he has guided Fulham from rock bottom with just a single point, to picking up 13 from a possible 21 points, and three points above the drop zone. This Saturday they face a trip north to Wigan Athletic, where a win for the Cottagers would see them leap frog their opponents and could lift them as high as 15th position.

CLOSE TO HOME CLASHES

After an 8-0 home defeat last time out, Birmingham City could not have followed up with a much tougher fixture, a 16-mile trip, through the Black Country, to play near neighbours Wolverhampton Wanderers. Kenny Jackett’s men come into the game on the back of a 2-1 victory away at Leeds United. The two teams last met in the 2012/13 league campaign where Wolves recorded the double. This season the teams have had contrasting fortunes, with last season’s League One champions currently occupying third, level on points with leaders Derby, while The Blues are currently in the relegation zone.

Not quite as close the two Midlands clubs, but still just a 25-mile trip northwest, Millwall travel to Vicarage Road to face Watford. Both teams will enter the game in confident mood. The Lions, after a moral boosting victory against Cardiff and Watford, due to their run of eight games with no defeat including an impressive point at Middlesbrough last Saturday. This rich vain of form means the Hornets are second in the league, only behind Derby by one goal. Ian Holloway will have his work cut out as his team have one just once on the road this season while Watford are still to taste defeat in front of their home supporters.

BEST OF THE REST

A standout fixture this weekend happens at Griffin Park, with Derby County the visiting side. Brentford have been in some high scoring fixtures so far, including an unbelievable 6-6 draw against Dagenham and Redbridge in the League Cup. There have been four goals or more in five of the Bees’ games so far and when Steve McClaren’s league leaders visit this weekend it could prove another high scoring encounter.

Full Championship Fixture List
15.00 unless stated

Friday 31st October
Norwich v Bolton (19.45)

Saturday 1st November 
Wolves v Birmingham (12.15)
Blackburn v Reading
Blackpool v Ipswich
Brentford v Derby
Cardiff City v Leeds United
Charlton v Sheffield Wednesday
Huddersfield v Nottingham Forest
Rotherham v Middlesbrough
Watford v Millwall
Bournemouth v Brighton (17.15)

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