Which teams will make the Championship play-offs?
The Championship play-offs are one of the most eagerly anticipated events in world football. This season is no different. With Wolverhampton Wanderers already promoted having won the title, the race is now on to join them in the Premier League. Some big clubs still have a chance. It will be a nail-biting couple of weeks for their fans.
Here are the sides which could take the Championship's play-off places.
Cardiff could be in the play-offs if they fail to beat Reading on the last day of the season. That would be a huge blow as Neil Warnock's men are just one win away from guaranteeing automatic promotion to the Premier League. The Championship is unpredictable, though. The Bluebirds dropping points on Sunday can't be ruled out.
Not many believed Cardiff would be challenging for promotion come the campaign's final game. The Welsh side have exceeded expectations and must now complete the job.
Slavisa Jokanovic’s side have been on fire recently. If they win at Birmingham City and Cardiff fail to pick up three points, Fulham will sneak the second automatic promotion spot.
Should the Cottagers miss out, they have the play-offs to fall back on. They would then be highly fancied. As well as possessing experience, Fulham are capable of beating any side in the division. With talent such as Alexsander Mitrovic, Ryan Sessegnon and Tom Cairney in their ranks, they would be one of the favourites to secure promotion at Wembley
Steve Bruce’s side are another dark horse for the Play-Offs. Having previously used that route to take Hull City up, the Villa boss will ensure his current team are ready for the fight.
Although Villa have gone about their business quietly this season, they are capable of beating anyone in the Championship. They have some top players in their ranks such as Robert Snodgrass, Jack Grealish and Jonathan Kodjia.
Villa face a probable tie against Middlesbrough in the play-off semi-final. The two sides would produce an interesting spectacle.
Boro have been turned around by Tony Pulis. They will definitely be in the Play-Offs having already amassed 75 points, five more than seventh-placed Preston North End.
Pulis has made Middlesbrough defensively organised, tough to break down. Further forward, Britt Assombalonga and Adama Traore can cause problems for any team. With experience on their books too, expect boro to handle the pressure of the play-offs.
The Rams need a win against Barnsley on the last day to confirm their place in the Play-Offs. Derby have come so close to promotion to the Premier League many times over the past few years. Could this finally be their year?
Derby, like Middlesbrough, are an experienced side and have players who have been in the Play-Offs before.
Preston North End
Alex Neil’s side can sneak into the Play-Offs on the final day. A win over Burton Albion and the Rams dropping points to Barnsley would secure sixth place. That would be some story for the Lilywhites.
Preston have been very consistent this season, causing problems to every opponent. They are now hoping to prolong their season beyond the 46th game.