Championship predictions: Boro to sneak into play-offs

James Mason
LiveScore
Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder will hope his side benefit from a slip-up by former club Sheffield United
Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder will hope his side benefit from a slip-up by former club Sheffield United

With the final round of Championship fixtures taking place on Saturday, we still do not know the identity of the final two teams who will compete in the play-offs.

Fulham have already secured the title going into the last day of the campaign, while Bournemouth's return to the Premier League was confirmed after they overcame Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night to clinch second place. 

Forest and Huddersfield — in third and fourth respectively — are both on 79 points and have secured top-six finishes.

Heading into Saturday, there are four sides that still have a chance joining them. 

Sheffield United sit in fifth position, level on points with Luton in sixth, but they have a superior goal to the Hatters. 

Middlesbrough are lurking behind in seventh, two points adrift, while Millwall occupy eighth, still clinging on to their slim hopes of making the play-offs. 

Boro primed to strike

Boro travel to Preston this weekend and the visitors, who have won their last two matches, will be confident of taking all three points. 

Chris Wilder's outfit are also unbeaten in their last five away games, keeping four clean sheets in the process, and they face a Lancashire side that were thumped 4-1 by Blackburn in their last home assignment. 

A victory for the men from the Riverside would certainly put the pressure on the two teams above them and there is every chance one of those sides could slip up at the crucial moment. 

The Blades welcome Fulham to Bramall Lane and although the visitors have already clinched the title, they will not be downing tools in the Steel City. 

Serbia international Aleksandar Mitrovic will be eager to add to his sensational tally of 43 league goals this season and could be worth a look in the anytime scorer market.

While the first scorer bet is also an option given the fact he has broken the deadlock for the Cottagers 22 times already this term. 

Paul Heckingbottom's Sheffield United host Fulham on Saturday
Paul Heckingbottom's Sheffield United host Fulham on Saturday

Hatters to hang on

Luton's play-off hopes were dealt a damaging blow last time out when they were thrashed 7-0 by Fulham — a defeat that leaves them behind Sheffield United, Middlesbrough and Millwall in terms of goal difference.

The Hatters do have the chance to make up for that loss when they host Reading, who have already secured their Championship status and have nothing but pride to play for. 

Nathan Jones will demand a response from his side at home, where the Bedfordshire club are unbeaten in their last four matches. 

Nathan Jones' Luton are sixth in the table going into the final day
Nathan Jones' Luton are sixth in the table going into the final day

Championship promotion predictions

With the Blades facing a tricky clash against Fulham, do not overlook Boro's chances of taking full advantage.

Luton should be able to hold on to their place in the top six, with either Forest or Huddersfield awaiting in the play-off semi-finals.

Tags

MiddlesbroughLuton TownChampionshipSheffield UnitedMillwall
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