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The runners and riders in the Championship promotion race
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Mitchell Fretton
Sheffield United look set to return to the Premier League
Sheffield United look set to return to the Premier League

The Championship is enjoying one of its most competitive seasons in 2022-23 with half of the field still in contention to gain promotion to the Premier League.

Only a handful of points separate 10 teams who are vying for a spot in the play-offs, while the battle for survival is also going down to the wire.

As we approach the closing stages of the campaign, we take a look at the teams hoping to stake their claim for a place in England's top flight.

Brilliant Burnley

Vincent Kompany has done an outstanding job in charge of Burnley who look set to cruise to the title and return to the Premier League at the first time of asking.

The Belgian head coach has transformed the culture of the Lancashire club and their attacking football has been rewarded at Turf Moor.

Should they overcome Middlesbrough on Good Friday, then the Clarets could secure promotion and inch one step closer to success in their new era.

Nathan Tella is Burnley's top scorer this season
Nathan Tella is Burnley's top scorer this season

Close but no guarantee

Sheffield United should be the ones to join Burnley in the automatic promotion spots but they are being closely stalked by Middlesbrough and Luton.

The Blades also have one eye on their FA Cup semi-final clash with Manchester City which may hinder their league form.

Recent defeats to teams around them has Paul Heckingbottom looking over his shoulder but favourable fixtures against Cardiff, Birmingham and Huddersfield may be enough to see United them over the line on the final day.

The great chase

Four of the top six spots in the Championship look in safe hands with Middlesbrough and Luton occupying third and fourth respectively.

There is still an outside chance that either the Boro or the Hatters could leapfrog United to second but both look a safe bet to make the play-offs, with six points separating them from Millwall in fifth.

Michael Carrick and Rob Edwards will meet late in April at the Riverside Stadium in a clash that could decide who finishes above the other but the hosts also have to face Burnley and Norwich before that.

Luton, fresh off their win over fierce rivals Watford, travel to The Den on Good Friday and face a tough test against Blackburn in the penultimate game of the season.

Luton look set to return to the play-offs this season
Luton look set to return to the play-offs this season

In the mix

Millwall, Blackburn, Norwich and West Brom are split by just five points with seven games to go but it seems only two will be able to make the cut for the final two spots in the play-offs.

The Rovers look to be the pick of the bunch having won three of their last five in the Championship, but they currently sit below the Lions, who have picked up just seven points from their last 13 available.

The Canaries are winless in their last four league matches under David Wagner and may fall under siege from the Baggies who have a favourable run-in and who host Norwich in late April.

Never say never

Coventry are still in the running to finish in the top six
Coventry are still in the running to finish in the top six

The remaining teams in with a chance of sliding into contention for promotion will have to rely on those above to slip up — but stranger things have happened.

Mark Robins' Coventry have shot up the table in recent months and they find themselves in a similar situation to Norwich and must start winning on a more consistent basis if they are to slot into the top six.

Preston have found some fine form in recent weeks and could carry some momentum into the run-in. 

But both Watford and Sunderland have struggled recently and will be hoping for some drama to improve their chances.


ChampionshipAFC BournemouthSheffield UnitedMiddlesbroughLuton TownMillwallBlackburnNorwich CityCoventryWest BromwichPrestonWatfordSunderland
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