CHAMPIONSHIP: MID-WEEK PREVIEW
Match Previews29th September
Cardiff City enter Tuesday night’s fixture against Brighton and Hove Albion after a change in fortunes. They are unbeaten in the league under the management of Scott Young and Danny Gabbidon. After an impressive point at the Ipro Stadium and a battling win at home to Sheffield Wednesday, the Bluebirds’ will be looking extend their run down in East Sussex.
BATTLE AT THE BOTTOM
With the new season ten games strong, there are seven teams who could find themselves in the bottom three before the weekend’s fixture schedule. One team who will definitely be occupying the relegation zone come Friday will be Blackpool. Currently on two points from nine games, they will have their work cut out on Tuesday night with a trip to face Middlesbrough, a team who seem to be coming into a spell of real form – holding Liverpool to a draw over 120 minutes recently in the League Cup.
Arguably the most intriguing fixture this midweek is the battle of second and third bottom, Bolton Wanderers against Fulham. A win for either side could see them climbing out of the bottom three at this early stage of the campaign. Fulham gained their first victory on Saturday away at Birmingham, while The Trotters will be looking to recover from a home defeat against Derby by picking up a much needed victory at Craven Cottage come Wednesday.
THE FORM TEAMS
Despite finding themselves down in eighth place, Bob Peeters’ Charlton Athletic are still unbeaten this season. The Addicks have picked up a remarkable six draws in nine games, including draws in the last three games. They face their toughest test yet with a visit to Carrow Road to line-up against table toppers Norwich City.
Charlton are not the only team still unbeaten, they are joined by Nottingham Forest in this impressive achievement. Stuart Pearce’s side will have to come through a tough trip north to Wigan Athletic to keep this run going. Second in the form table, Ipswich Town have enjoyed a strong recent run themselves with four wins, one draw and one loss in the past six games, shooting up to fifth position in the league table. The Tractor Boys have a 365 mile round trip as they travel to Hillsborough. Sheffield Wednesday had occupied a play-off place before being defeated by our very own Bluebirds on Saturday and will be looking to rectify that with three points at home against Mick McCarthy’s men.
BEST OF THE REST
Watford find themselves with a new man at the helm entering their home game against London rivals Brentford. Sadly, Oscar Garcia had to step down after just 27 days in charge at Vicarage Road due to ill health. Bill McKinlay enters the fray with the Hornets in a strong 4th position. Despite being eight places lower down the charts, the Bees could move level on points with their opponents with a win in the Hornet’s backyard.
Rotherham and Blackburn Rovers may only be 77 miles apart but Tuesday will see the sides meet the first time in the league since 1983. On that occasion Rotherham won by two clear goals, and fans at the New York Stadium will welcome a similar result this week with the Millers just three points above the drop-zone.
Full Fixture list
Tuesday 30th September
Brighton and Hove Albion v Cardiff City
Derby County v AFC Bournemouth
Middlesbrough v Blackpool
Millwall v Birmingham City
Norwich City v Charlton Athletic
Rotherham United v Blackburn Rovers
Sheffield Wednesday v Ipswich Town
Watford v Brentford
Wigan Athletic v Nottingham Forest
Wednesday 1st October
Leeds United v Reading
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Huddersfield Town
Fulham v Bolton Wanderers