At the midway point of the Championship season, entering the New Year can sometimes be regarded as a time of renewal for many teams.
The transfer window is open, and many clubs will be looking to bolster their squads, while others might be looking to reduce their numbers a little, clearing out some of their unwanted players.
Competition is fierce at both ends of the table, which always means the potential for change as teams jostle for position. This also makes betting on games all the more interesting, leading to more than a few surprise results.
Against all the Championship odds, leaders can stumble in their quest for promotion, just as teams previously struggling to begin to hit a rich vein of form.
That has always been the beauty of watching the second tier of English football, which is why betting exchanges can be a good place to look for odds comparisons.
There’s also the opportunity to back or lay bets with other punters, rather than just betting against the odds established by a bookmaker.
Insofar as the Championship title race is concerned, Norwich City looks to be the most comfortably positioned team at the midway stage of the 2020-2021 campaign. The Canaries have managed to remain perched at the top of the table and has odds of 2/5 of being promoted.
They are also managing to establish a slim buffer of points above their nearest rivals. However, with so many games left to play, that situation can soon change.
Swansea City has led the chasing pack so far, and the jostle for automatic promotion and playoff places will continue. Little separates the Swans from treading water against the rest, with Bournemouth, Brentford, Reading, and Watford all in the mix. Likewise, the gap in points compared to teams outside the playoff zone is minimal.
Meanwhile, the lower half of the Championship table is proving decidedly uncomfortable, with plenty of big names caught up in the unwanted scrap against relegation. Few eyebrows will be raised at seeing Wycombe Wanderers and Rotherham United struggling, this was always going to be a struggle for two clubs punching above their level. They both seem destined for the drop.
However, the fact that Derby County has become embroiled in the relegation battle is quite a surprise, which leaves fans of the Rams bleating for a swift turnaround in form.
Sheffield Wednesday have been struggling on and off the pitch recently with odds of 11/10 of being relegated. This indicates some wise management will be needed to elevate the Owls from their current plight.
Considering that Nottingham Forest and Birmingham City are also in the thick of the fight, as two of the bigger and more renowned clubs at this level, fans will be demanding an improvement in results.
Astute moves in the transfer window might help their situation, yet it’s hard to shake the feeling their struggles will continue.
As always, the Championship is always full of switches and changes, which brings plenty of good opportunities for savvy bettors. Don’t forget to watch team and player form, looking out for changes that could make all the difference to your betting predictions.