It’s still early days but Reading fans are daring to dream with the Royals now five points clear at the top of the 2020/21 EFL Championship table.
Can Veljko Paunović stretch his side’s unbeaten start to eight league games?
We’re back with our midweek EFL Championship predictions as the table toppers head to Lancashire.
EFL Championship Predictions
Current leaders Reading are on a roll and are already showcasing that promotion-winning habit every contender needs: plucking out different ways to win.
The Royals took time to click into gear in home games against both Wycombe and Rotherham last week before but were clinical when they needed to be. The surprise pacesetters will need to be on their guard however, with fired-up Blackburn Rovers back on song last weekend with a thumping win at Coventry.
Two teams that don’t look destined to trouble the top half any time soon meet at Oakwell as Barnsley host QPR, with new Tykes boss Valérien Ismaël looking to get his side off the mark in his first game in charge. It could be a close-run thing in West London as likely promotion candidates Brentford and Norwich City square off with both sides still yet to truly convince, while consistent Middlesbrough will be out to make it seven games unbeaten against a toiling Coventry City.
It could be an unpredictable night at the Liberty Stadium as two teams that entertain and frustrate in equal measure lock horns. Swansea City and Stoke City both look credible play-off candidates if they can avoid their occasional tendency to drop cheap points from favourable positions.
Spare a thought for Wycombe Wanderers. The Chairboys came within minutes of a deserved first point of the campaign before late heartbreak away at Norwich. Their hunt for a first point doesn’t get much easier as they host resilient Watford.
Two good outside bets for the play-offs meet at Deepdale in Wednesday night’s Championship opener as Preston North End take on Millwall, while Aitor Karanka badly needs a Birmingham win – or even just a goal – against Huddersfield Town. The Blues boss will be out to silence some of his doubters, with the entertainment factor sorely missing at St Andrews so far this campaign.
Bournemouth boss Jason Tindall saw his unbeaten start remain intact as the Cherries snatched the latest of equalisers at promotion rivals Watford on Saturday. They could leapfrog Bristol City into the automatic spots if results go their way this week and justify their billing as one of their favourites in the Championship outright betting.
Derby County manager Philip Cocu managed to stop the rot with a hard-fought draw against Nottingham Forest on Friday night, but the Dutchman still needs a quickfire win to calm nerves in the boardroom against Cardiff City. It could also be a testing night for the Rams’ East Midland rivals. Chris Hughton goes up against his former first-team coach at Brighton, Nathan Jones, as Luton Town host Nottingham Forest.
Finally, yo-yo club Rotherham are all too aware they face another season-long slog for survival. A win against penalised Sheffield Wednesday would take them a healthy 13-points clear of their Yorkshire opponents to possibly give Paul Warne one less rival to focus on. After a poor home display to Luton at the weekend, this fixture already has a make-or-break feel to it for the Owls given their desperate need to start reeling in some rivals.
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Championship Correct Score Predictions – Gameweek 8
Here are our Championship score predictions in full ahead of Gameweek 8…
TUESDAY 27TH OCTOBER
Barnsley 1-1 Queens Park Rangers
Blackburn Rovers 1-1 Reading
Brentford 1-0 Norwich City
Middlesbrough 2-1 Coventry City
Swansea City 2-1 Stoke City
Wycombe Wanderers 0-2 Watford
WEDNESDAY 28TH OCTOBER
Preston North End 1-0 Millwall
Birmingham City 0-1 Huddersfield Town
AFC Bournemouth 2-1 Bristol City
Derby County 1-1 Cardiff City
Luton Town 1-2 Nottingham Forest
Rotherham Utd 1-0 Sheffield Wednesday
Championship Betting Tips
Odds correct at time of writing but may be subject to change.
Our Predicted Championship Table For 2020/21
1. NORWICH CITY
3. CARDIFF CITY
4. DERBY COUNTY
6. STOKE CITY
7. SWANSEA CITY
8. NOTTINGHAM FOREST
11. PRESTON NORTH END
13. BLACKBURN ROVERS
15. BIRMINGHAM CITY
16. LUTON TOWN
17. HUDDERSFIELD TOWN
18. BRISTOL CITY
21. COVENTRY CITY
22. ROTHERHAM UTD
23. SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY
24. WYCOMBE WANDERERS