EFL Championship Round-Up: Sheffield United Open Gap at the Top, Baggies Earn Draw at Norwich City and Cardiff City Sack Morison
When the EFL Championship gets to the ten-game mark, it’s a decent gauge of what the teams fighting it out for promotion are really capable of. Similarly, if a team is down near the foot of the table after reaching this point of the campaign, they may well really be in trouble for the long haul.
The English second tier is notoriously difficult to get out of, or indeed to avoid being relegated from, and that’s reflected in the up-and-down nature of the EFL Championship betting market. Twenty-four teams set out on the adventure, but only two can get out of the division directly, while a host of others will hope for the play-off route to the riches of the Premier League.
Blades Looking Sharp
Paul Heckingbottom’s side finished last year strongly but were beaten to the punch in the playoff semi-finals by Nottingham Forest, who subsequently made it to the promised land, and the Blades look very much up for the task in 2022/23.
After ten games, Sheffield United sit top and three points clear of Norwich City following their weekend win over Preston. The win was a hard-fought one and only the second North End have suffered this season.
Iliman Ndiaye and Oli McBurnie were once again the scorers, and the Blades are looking like a good bet for automatic promotion.
Baggies Get Point at Carrow Road
Norwich City were on a fine run of form, with six successive wins, but they could only manage a home draw with struggling West Brom. Dara O’Shea put the Baggies ahead early on before Teemu Pukki’s effort deflected off Sam Byram to level things up.
The Canaries are making a good account of themselves, and having previously won the EFL Championship twice in the past four seasons; you wouldn’t bet against Dean Smith’s side making it a hat-trick.
Watford were one of the favourites for the title but haven’t started that brightly; however, the 10/1 you can get on the Hornets to win the Championship, via BoyleSports, is still very tempting. After all, Rob Edwards’s side are still in the top ten and by no means out of the running.
They were unfortunate to draw with Sunderland, Watford having twice gone ahead before Jewison Bennette scored a late leveller to make it 2-2 at Vicarage Road.
Cardiff City Sack Steve Morison
Welsh side Cardiff City moved to sack Steve Morison after the Bluebirds lost 1-0 to Huddersfield. The defeat left the club in 18th place. Last season he helped keep the club in the Championship, and that earned him a new contract over the summer, but he’s now been forced out.
A lack of goals has cost Morison and Cardiff City dear. They’ve failed to score in five of their last ten games and have just seven goals from their ten games this season.
Elsewhere Paul Ince had his son Tom to thank for Reading getting a narrow win at newly promoted Wigan Athletic. Tom Ince bagged a great free-kick mid-way through the second half to help Reading up to third.
Burnley overcame in-form Bristol City with Jay Rodriguez scoring the winner, his fifth of the season, and helped lift Vincent Kompany’s team up to fourth.
At the other end, Coventry City sits bottom with just three points though they have three games in hand over their rivals.