Thursday 14 August 2008

Weekend 2 Championship Preview

It seems like a very long time ago that Watford v Charlton was a Premiership fixture. Nonetheless, it should represent a decent test of the current squad and whether or not we can build-on our encouraging opening day win. Here's how I see the Championship panning out on Saturday...

Barnsley v Coventry City

A real test this for Coventry. Barnsley were beaten at Loftus Road last week and will be determined to open their account. The Sky Blues squeaked a win against Norwich at the Ricoh and Chris Coleman was not particularly happy with the manner in which they did it. I suspect he might not be any happier after the visit to Oakwell.
Prediction; 2-1

Bristol City v Derby County

Ouch! Not the fixture you would want after losing your first game at home to newly promoted Doncaster. Nicky Maynard squandered a couple of opportunities to open his account for the Robins at Blackpool last week and will see this as his chance. The whole Derby side will have similar feelings. City should be too strong here but I expect Paul Jewell's side to challenge this year and he may get the reaction from them he needs.
Prediction; 1-1

Burnley v Ipswich Town

Two poor losers from the opening weekend. More was expected of both of these sides last time out and neither will want to start with two blanks. I can see them sharing the spoils.
Prediction; 1-1

Doncaster Rovers v Cardiff City
A perfect fixture for Doncaster Rovers after their surprise victory at Pride Park on Saturday. Cardiff don't travel well and the pressure may be off after opening their account at home to Southampton. Donny to be sitting proudly in a play-off spot come 5pm.
Prediction; 2-1

Norwich City v Blackpool
Glenn Roeder's men will be itching to get out at Carrow Road and get the result their performance deserved at Coventry. Blackpool started badly with a home defeat to Bristol City and this could be a poor start for them.
Prediction; 2-0

Preston NE v Crystal Palace
Neil Warnock was quick to comment this week on how hard he believes his Palace side will be to beat this year. They moved quickly to offset the loss of Clinton Morrison by signing Leandre Grifft and John Oster who scored on Tuesday evening. I could see Palace winning this but Preston got a good result away at Ipswich last weekend and they may have more resolve about them than I thought.
Prediction; 0-0

Reading v Plymouth Argyle

Only a home win will do for the Royals and I expect them to get it.
Prediction 3-1

Sheffield United v QPR
The Blades received a boost with week with the news that James Beattie is nearer a return than anticipated. They would probably have preferred to play this fixture later in the season when he's back but they should have enough to get the win.
Prediction; 1-0

Southampton v Birmingham City
I can't see Southampton getting anything here. Tey went down at Ninian Park last week and Kevin Phillips and Co got the boost of a last minute winner at home. I don't think King Kev will leave it so late this week.
prediction; 2-0

Swansea City v Nottingham Forest

Two of the promoted clubs meet here and Swansea will feel this is a three-pointer. If they can maintain the passing game they showed at the Valley last week, home advantage should see them home and dry.
Prediction; 2-0

Watford v Charlton Athletic
We probably won't get a better chance to win at Watford than this week. Their home record is not brilliant and they have as many off-field pressures as we have had. The signing of Nicky Bailey should up the morale of the team this week and if he can settle quickly into the midfield we can get off to a quick-start at Vicarage Road.
Prediction; 1-2

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Sheffield Wednesday
Wednesday got off to a flyer last week going two-up inside the first five minutes. They won't get this all their own way and Big Chris will be looking to open his league account at Molineux.
Prediction; 2-0

For those of you travelling to Watford, I really home we can get behind the team and let them know that the boo-boys don't travel.

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