England Championship predictions and odds

Although most punters often stick to top-flight national leagues and competitions, EFL Championship betting remains as popular as ever. It’s likely the biggest second-tier league in the world if we’re talking about football betting, and is more than worth your attention.

To that end, Betting Fellow is here with the best EFL Championship betting tips out there. We’ll also take a look at the state of the league going into the 2023/24 season – the favourites, top players, and most exciting showdowns we’ll be seeing over the next year or so.

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England Championship Predictions

23/04/2024

Leicester City - Southampton

By pricing a home win at around 2.12, the bookies made it clear that Leicester City are the favourites. Overall, though, the difference between the teams is not big, and the match can end either way.

While Southampton may manage to claw their way to a win yet, it will be quite a struggle. As we can see thanks to the 3.35 betting odds ... read more

Betting tip (stake: 9/10): Over 2,5 1.85 at 1xbet
Correct score prediction: 3:2
Deposit Bonus: Check 1xbet free bets

16/04/2024

Southampton - Preston North End

Best bookmaker online do not see past Southampton in this game and we wholeheartedly agree. The betting odds work largely in their favour and there is a good reason for it. Preston North End will have extremely difficult time running away with anything from this match.

Though it may not be particularly attractive to punters, this match is at least easy to predict. Anything but a Home Win is probably wishful thinking for read more

Betting tip (stake: 7/10): Over 2,5 1.63 at 888Sport
Correct score prediction: 2:2
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Championship Standings

  • Team
  • MP
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • F
  • A
  • D
  • P
  • Last Five
  • 7
  • Hull City
  • 42
  • 18
  • 11
  • 13
  • 62
  • 54
  • 8
  • 65
  • W D W L L
  • 15
  • Watford
  • 43
  • 12
  • 16
  • 15
  • 59
  • 58
  • 1
  • 52
  • L D D D D
  • 16
  • Millwall
  • 43
  • 13
  • 11
  • 19
  • 42
  • 55
  • -13
  • 50
  • W W L L D
  • 20
  • Stoke City
  • 43
  • 12
  • 11
  • 20
  • 41
  • 60
  • -19
  • 47
  • D L D D W
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England Championship Results

History and General Information

The full name of this competition is the English Football League Championship. Now, to those familiar with the history of England’s league system, its relationship to the Premier League will be familiar. However, we’ll go over because it may be confusing to beginners.

The main ancestor of today’s championship is the English Football League second division. The Football League was founded in 1888 to create a unified national league. The Football Association Cup existed before that, but the tournament format it has was an issue for many clubs. Namely, if a team was knocked out early, they would be left with no matches for the remainder of the season.

A round-robin competition was needed, but the EFL wasn’t the only fish in the pond. The Football Alliance was a rival league which existed for a few years towards the end of the 19th century. The short-lived competition consisted of 14 teams which weren’t part of the Football League. In 1892 the Alliance was merged with the main league, finally creating a central authority for English football.

However, the EFL already had the same number of clubs. Because of the competition’s round-robin format, it would be extremely difficult to organize enough matches to allow each team to play every other team twice. As such, the Second Division was formed to accommodate most of the Football Alliance’s member clubs. Notably, a few clubs still ended up in the First Division, replacing a few former First Division teams.

The system of relegation and promotion was immediately implemented as well and remains largely in place to this day. As time went on, more divisions were added – like the Third and Fourth – because of football’s rapidly growing popularity and the increasing number of clubs who wished to join the English Football League.

As the ‘70s and ‘80s came round, football in the country was at an all-time low. Despite notable successes in international competitions and massive fanbases, even England’s greatest clubs were financially weak and unstable. Those same clubs argued for a bigger cut of the profits due to bringing in more spectators, but these complaints ultimately fell on deaf ears.

All of this came to a head in 1992. In the ongoing fight to acquire better profits and TV broadcast rights, all First Division clubs simultaneously left the English Football League on February 20. This was a seminal moment in football history, and it also defined how the English football system would work. The Premier League was formed, replacing the EFL First Division as the top flight of English football. Though it is technically a separate entity, pretty much the entire format remained intact, including the system of promotion and relegation.

As a result, every team in the EFL was bumped up one league higher – at least in the name. The former Second Division became the First Division, even though it represented the second flight of football on a national level. If you feel this sounds a bit strange, you’re probably right.

That’s why the Football League was rebranded in the 21st century. In 2004, the Football League First Division was renamed to the Football League Championship, while the Third and Fourth divisions were rebranded as League One and League Two. Also, the organization was rebranded as the English Football League in 2014 (though we referred to it as such throughout this text to avoid confusion.)

The Premier League split did greatly impact some aspects of the Football League. For starters, its member clubs reported financial issues caused by reduced viewership because the country’s most popular clubs left. Today, however, those issues were smoothed out if the numbers are to be believed. Despite not being a top-flight league, the English Championship maintains an enormous following. Reportedly, it records higher attendance than ever France’s Ligue 1 or Italy’s Serie A, which are both members of the European Big 5.

Format

The Championship’s format shouldn’t be unfamiliar to anyone who’s ever seen a football league, except with 4 more clubs than what you might be used to. The 24 constituent teams of the Championship play against one another twice throughout a season, typically lasting from August to May of the following year. As always, one match is played home and one is played away, and points are awarded in the usual style of 3/1/0.

Despite being called the Championship, the winners of this league are not named champions. Instead, the two best-placed teams go on to the Premier League. Additionally, Championship play-offs are held to determine which team will take the third promotion spot.

Championship play-offs take the form of a mini knockout tournament. The third-placed team plays against the sixth-placed team twice, while the fourth-placed team plays against the fifth. The winners of these outings face off in single-match Championship finals, the winner of which earns a trophy and a promotion to the Premier League.

Conversely, the three bottom-placed teams are relegated to League One. League One has a similar structure to determine who gets a promotion to the Championship.


EFL Championship Derby Matches

M1 Derby

Though the noted showdown between Luton Town and Watford is long past its prime, it’s a storied rivalry going back more than a century. The relations between these two teams and their fans were very fiery in the 80s while both of them were in the top-flight. The teams’ fall from relevance eventually resulted in calmer showdowns, though it is still well known among football fans.

East Midlands Derby

It would be a misstep not to mention a rivalry involving Derby County, and the one with Nottingham Forest is perhaps the most notable. This is likely the fiercest rivalry outside the Premier League and dates back more than a century (though the clubs were admittedly more successful at the time.)

EFL Championship Best Stadiums

Hillsborough

With a capacity of just under 40,000, Sheffield’s home turf is the biggest venue in the Championship. Being one of the oldest football clubs in the world, Sheffield boast a very old and storied stadium. That said, one of those stories is the infamous Hillsborough disaster, which marked football history and changed the standards for stadiums forever. Currently, there are plans to further increase the capacity to 45,000.

Riverside Stadium

Built in 1996, Middlesbrough’s home ground is an impressive all-seater stadium with a capacity of just over 34,000. It was constructed to replace the Boro’s previous stadium after the Hillsborough disaster, which sadly means that it can’t hope to match the history and charm of some other Championship teams’ stadiums. Still, it boasts modern facilities and regularly houses fierce showdowns.