Championship predictor: What will final 2018-19 table look like?

Gary Rowett, Tony Pulis and Frank Lampard
Will Gary Rowett, Tony Pulis or Frank Lampard be celebrating promotion to the Premier League in May 2019?

Frank Lampard's Derby County for promotion? Stoke City to bounce straight back to the Premier League? Will any club "do a Sunderland"?

Here's your chance to predict the final Championship table for the 2018-19 season.

A group of 23 BBC Sport journalists have made their choices - more on that to follow... but it's time to have a go yourself!

Championship table predictor 18-19

How will the Championship table look at the end of the season? Pick how you think it will look at the end, placing all 24 teams in order. Have a go then share with your friends.

BBC Sport's predictions

Last season, you may remember that our group of reporters correctly picked five of the top six finishers and three of the eventual bottom four. Well done, team.

Now for the bad bit. Middlesbrough were tipped to go up as champions, Sunderland would finish in the top half of the table and Millwall would be relegated.

What have they predicted for 2018-19?

BBC Sport's predicted final table
1Stoke City1.48
3Derby County5.08
4West Bromwich Albion5.24
5Nottingham Forest6.08
6Leeds United7.00
7Swansea City8.32
8Aston Villa8.56
10Sheffield United10.56
11Norwich City11.36
12Preston North End11.44
13Sheffield Wednesday11.92
14Bristol City13.40
15Queens Park Rangers13.84
17Blackburn Rovers14.52
18Birmingham City14.60
19Wigan Athletic15.00
20Hull City15.04
22Ipswich Town16.92
23Bolton Wanderers20.36
24Rotherham United21.48

Before you reach for the email address of the BBC complaints department because your side are tipped to struggle - please remember that it's just a bit of fun!

How our predicted table was put together

Our journalists were asked to place each Championship team in positions one to 24. Once all responses had been received, the team with the highest average position was placed first in our final table, then second and so on.

What do you think of our selection? Let us know using #bbcefl on social media or use the comments section at the bottom of this page.

Some of your responses will be used in BBC Sport's live text coverage during the opening round of English Football League matches.

How did we rate your club?

The title favourites

We predicted Cardiff City to end 13th last season but the Welsh club surpassed expectations to finish second behind champions Wolves, who had received only one vote to finish top of the table.

  • Thirteen of our 23 reporters selected Stoke and Middlesbrough as their two teams to be promoted automatically.
  • The Potters, relegated from the top flight in May, were tipped to be champions by 14 of our journalists. Boro received six votes, while West Bromwich Albion got two and Nottingham Forest one.

The teams coming down

West Bromwich Albion head coach Darren Moore
West Bromwich Albion took 11 points from their six Premier League games when Darren Moore was caretaker boss at the end of last season

None of last season's three relegated clubs were able to bounce back at the first attempt. Middlesbrough were beaten play-off semi-finalists, but Hull City were in a relegation battle until the closing weeks of the campaign and Sunderland went down again into League One.

  • In addition to their two votes to be champions, one of our reporters tipped them to finish second and a further 13 expect the Baggies to finish in a play-off place.
  • Swansea were predicted to finish in a play-off spot by seven of our journalists, while five others believe they will end up in the bottom half of the table.

The surprise package?

Other than Cardiff, Millwall were the biggest surprise of last season, confounding a pre-season prediction of relegation to finish just outside the play-off positions.

  • Nottingham Forest finished 17th last season but are intent on a promotion push this term, breaking their transfer record to sign Portuguese midfielder Joao Carvalho for a reported £13.2m and spending a further £6m on striker Lewis Grabban.
  • Two of our reporters think Aitor Karanka's side will be promoted automatically, while 12 predicted they will finish in a play-off place.

Lampard and Bielsa to fare well?

Seven Championship clubs will start the season with new bosses. Two of the more eye-catching appointments were at Derby County and Leeds United, where ex-Chelsea midfielder Lampard and former Argentina coach Marcelo Bielsa have taken their first managerial roles in England.

  • Nobody tipped either Derby or Leeds to win the Championship, but both got three votes to finish second.
  • Fourteen think the Rams will end up in the play-offs for the fourth time in six seasons, while seven reporters believe Leeds will finish between third and sixth.

What next for Aston Villa?

Aston Villa striker Jonathan Kodjia
Jonathan Kodjia missed much of last season with injury - could the Ivory Coast striker fire Villa into the top six again in 2018-19?

Play-off final defeat by Fulham in May left Aston Villa facing an uncertain future. Serious financial trouble quickly became public knowledge, although those worries eased somewhat when billionaires Wes Edens and Nassef Sawiris were announced as new investors in July.

  • Nine of our journalists believe Steve Bruce's side will contest the play-offs, while five think they will finish in the bottom half of the table.
  • Two reporters predicted a bottom-six finish for Villa, although nobody tipped them to be relegated.

The teams coming up

All three of the teams promoted from League One in 2016-17 - Sheffield United, Bolton Wanderers and Millwall - stayed in the Championship last season.

  • League One champions Wigan Athletic and fellow promoted club Blackburn Rovers had similar records in our predictions; both clubs had one vote to finish in a play-off place, while there were two votes apiece for them to be relegated.
  • However, play-off winners Rotherham United did not fare so well; 20 of our 23 journalists tipped them to be relegated, with 16 of those predicting the Millers will finish bottom of the table.

The relegation battle

In one of the closest Championship relegation battles for many years, five clubs - Reading, Birmingham City, Bolton, Burton Albion and Barnsley - were in danger of going down on the final day of last term. Burton and Barnsley eventually joined Sunderland in the bottom three.

  • Only five of our 23 reporters believe Ipswich Town will finish in the bottom three, but an average prediction of about 17th is the third lowest among our group of journalists, meaning they are 22nd in our predictions table.
  • Reading had seven votes to finish in the bottom three - two more than Ipswich - but their average position was slightly higher.
  • Bolton, who scored two goals in the last five minutes of their final league game last season to stay up, are the other club predicted to go down; 18 of our team believe they will finish in a relegation place.


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