In Focus: The Championship stars of the season

Luke Bissett
LiveScore
Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic lit up the Championship with his goalscoring prowess
Fulham striker Aleksandar Mitrovic lit up the Championship with his goalscoring prowess

The Championship has become a hotbed of talent in recent years — and there has certainly been no shortage of stars in the second tier this season. 

Recent summers have seen the likes of Matty Cash and Michael Olise secure top-flight moves, with plenty more deals expected during the upcoming transfer window. 

We take a look at five of the league's top performers this term.

Aleksandar Mitrovic

Where else to start other than the division's top scorer Aleksandar Mitrovic? 

The Serbian enjoyed a stunning season, racking up a record 43 Championship goals — the most strikes ever recorded in a 46-game campaign. 

The centre-forward, 27, was instrumental in Fulham's Premier League return, boasting a half-century of goal contributions as the Cottagers clinched the title. 

Yet question marks remain over Mitrovic's ability to adapt to English football's elite division with just 24 strikes in 104 appearances.

Aleksandar Mitrovic will hope to improve on last season's haul of just three Premier League goals in 2022-23
Aleksandar Mitrovic will hope to improve on last season's haul of just three Premier League goals in 2022-23

Harry Wilson

Mitrovic's team-mate Harry Wilson has also revived his career in SW6, with the Welshman playing a key role in Fulham's triumphant campaign. 

Eyebrows were raised when the Cottagers splurged £12million on the 25-year-old last summer — but the gamble has paid off with Wilson boasting a remarkable 29 goal contributions. 

The winger topped the division's assist charts with 19, earning a nomination for Championship Player of the Season as a result. 

Wilson set up an impressive 0.49 goals per 90 minutes over the course of the season, including a hat-trick of assists in Fulham's title-sealing 7-0 win over Luton earlier this month.

Dominic Solanke

Dominic Solanke scored 29 Championship goals for Bournemouth this season
Dominic Solanke scored 29 Championship goals for Bournemouth this season

In any ordinary season, Dominic Solanke would have strolled to the Golden Boot award after netting 29 goals in the Championship this term. 

The Bournemouth attacker initially struggled to acclimatise to senior football, scoring just three times in the Premier League for the Cherries after a £19m move from Liverpool. 

But he has flourished in the second tier, registering 44 strikes across two campaigns. 

Solanke, 24, will hope to maintain his fine goalscoring form in the top flight and live up to the expectations of former boss Jose Mourinho. 

While manager of Chelsea in 2015, Mourinho said: "For sure, he is going to play many Champions League matches, because he will be a good player. 

"My conscience tells me that if, for example, [Lewis] Baker, [Izzy] Brown, and Solanke are not national team players in a few years, I should blame myself."

Brennan Johnson

Brennan Johnson was a relative unknown ahead of this season — but he has made sure that everyone knows his name by the end of it. 

The Welshman enjoyed an impressive campaign with League One side Lincoln in 2020-21, scoring 10 league goals for the Imps. 

And the forward has had no issues with stepping up to the Championship, spearheading Nottingham Forest's monumental rise up the table. 

He has netted 17 league goals this term, including a crucial strike in the first leg of their play-off semi-final clash with Sheffield United, and played a vital role as the East Midlands outfit climbed from the bottom three into the play-offs. 

The 20-year-old's future at the City Ground will surely depend on Forest's league status next season, with a host of Premier League clubs reportedly interested in the youngster.

John Swift

John Swift recorded 11 goals and 13 assists in the Championship for Reading this season
John Swift recorded 11 goals and 13 assists in the Championship for Reading this season

The final name on this list is a player who will undoubtedly be on a number of clubs' radars in the summer. 

John Swift has consistently been one of the standout performers in the Championship since his move to Reading in 2016. 

The midfielder has contributed 11 goals and 13 assists this term, which is even more impressive when you consider that he has been playing in a struggling Royals side. 

Swift, 26, became the first player in the current campaign to reach double figures for both goals and assists — proving to be a real difference-maker in the final third. 

But Paul Ince's side look likely to lose their greatest asset with Swift's contract set to expire in June. The former Chelsea man will certainly not lack potential suitors.

Tags

ChampionshipFulhamReadingNottingham ForestBournemouth
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