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2013/14 Championship season club-by-club preview

Chris runs down every team in the Championship that isn't called "Bolton Wanderers" as the buildup to the new season continues. Where they were last year, transfers in & out, players to watch, and our predictions

Chris Brunskill


Manager: David Flitcroft

2012/13 Position: 21st

Transfers In: Dale Jennings (Bayern Munich), Chris O'Grady (Sheffield Wednesday), Christian Dibble (Bury), Wade Joyce (Sunderland), Lewin Nyatanga (Bristol City), John Cofie (Manchester United), Jean-Yves M'voto (Oldham Athletic)

Transfers Out: Matt Done (Rochdale), Rob Edwards, Lukas Lidakevicius, Marlon Harewood, Toni Silva (released), Stephen Foster (Tranmere Rovers), John Rooney (Bury)

Player to Watch: Dale Jennings arrived from European Champions Bayern Munich following a two year spell in their "B" team, it will be interesting to see how he has developed from his early days at Tranmere Rovers.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Relegation candidates, but they have a good manager and should survive.


Manager: Lee Clark

2012/13 Position: 12th

Transfers In: Tom Adeyemi (Norwich City), Neal Eardley (Blackpool), Lee Novak (Huddersfield Town), Darren Randolph (Motherwell), Andrew Shinnie (Inverness Caledonian Thistle), Matt Green (Mansfield Town), Kyle Bartley (Swansea City), Dan Burn (Fulham), Scott Allan (West Bromwich Albion), Shane Ferguson (Newcastle United)

Transfers Out: Curtis Davies (Hull City), Nathan Redmond (Norwich City), Marlon King (released)

Player to Watch: Lee Novak is a new signing from fellow Championship side Huddersfield Town. A striker of some repute in the lower league he will be expected to fill the gap in goals left by last season's top scorer Marlon King who has been released on a free transfer.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Mid-table mediocrity, flirting with relegation.


Manager: Gary Bowyer

2012/13 Position: 17th

Transfers In: Chris Taylor (Millwall), Alan Judge (Notts County), Simon Eastwood (Portsmouth), Devarn Green (Burton Albion), DJ Campbell (Queens Park Rangers), Matthew Kilgallon (Sunderland), Alex Marrow (Crystal Palace), Todd Kane (Chelsea)

Transfers Out: Nuno Gomes, Danny Murphy (released), Martin Olsson (Norwich City)

Player to Watch: Jordan Rhodes. Blackburn's only player of real quality. Last season's top scorer and shining beacon of quality amongst a sea of tripe.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: The comedy club of the division rely almost solely on Jordan Rhodes for the goals to keep them up. If they can keep him then survival should be achievable - without him then doom and oblivion surely beckons.


Manager: Paul Ince

2012/13 Position: 15th

Transfers In: Gary MacKenzie (MK Dons), Bobby Grant (Rochdale), Michael Chopra (Ipswich Town), Steve Davis (Bristol City)

Transfers Out: Alex Baptiste (Bolton Wanderers), Kevin Phillips (Crystal Palace), Ashley Eastham (Rochdale), Tiago Gomes (released), Neal Eardley (Birmingham City), Chris Kettings (York City), Stephen Crainey (Wigan Athletic)

Player to Watch: Tom Ince - a pacey goalscoring winger who turned down a move to Premier League new boys Cardiff City. If Blackpool can keep him out of the hands of a bigger side then he should be capable of keeping them up.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Lower mid-table with Tom Ince, relegation candidates without.


Manager: Eddie Howe

2012/13 Position: 2nd (League One)

Transfers In: Elliot Ward (Norwich City), Ian Harte (Reading), Mohamed Coulibaly (Grasshoppers Zurich)

Transfers Out: Charlie Sheringham, Steve Fletcher, Jonathan Meades, Frank Demouge (released)

Player to Watch: Striker Brett Pittman has experience of this league from his time at Bristol City, though I'm sure Bournemouth fans will be hoping that the club will invest in some more Championship players before the end of the window if the season is to be anything but a struggle. They have a good young manager though, and will be confident that they can continue last season's form.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Relegation candidates. Will struggle unless they improve their squad from last season.


Manager: Oscar Garcia

2012/13 Position: 4th

Transfers In: Matthew Upson (Stoke City), Adam Chicksen (MK Dons)

Transfers Out: Gary Dicker, Marcos Painter, Vicente (released), Stephen Dobbie (Crystal Palace), Ryan Harley (Swindon Town)

Player to Watch: More of a "man to watch" - new manager Oscar Garcia is a disciple of Barcelona and has been brought up in their system. Brighton fans will hope that he can bring attractive and successful football to the AMEX Stadium, though his CV with Barcelona's youth side and a year with Maccabi Tel-Aviv in Israel is not particularly extensive.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Should be challenging for promotion again. Top six.


Manager: Sean Dyche

2012/13 Position: 11th

Transfers In: Tom Heaton (Bristol City), Alex Cisak (Oldham Athletic), Joseph Mills (Reading), Scott Arfield (Huddersfield Town)

Transfers Out: Lee Grant (Derby County), Martin Paterson (Huddersfield Town)

Player to Watch: Charlie Austin. Last season's top scorer recently had a move to Premier League side Hull City collapse on medical grounds. Burnley will be hoping that he can stay fit and come somewhere near last season's tally.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Lower mid-table with Austin, struggling without.


Manager: Chris Powell

2012/13 Position: 9th

Transfers In: Mark Gower (Swansea City), Richard Wood (Coventry City)

Transfers Out: John Sullivan (Portsmouth), Scott Wagstaff (Bristol City), Ricardo Fuller, Salim Kerkar (released), Danny Haynes (Notts County), Bradley Wright-Phillips (New York Red Bulls), David Button (Brentford)

Player to Watch: Dale Stephens - Bolton lad Dale scored seven goals in 28 games last season emerging as the main man in their midfield.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Manager Chris Powell appears to be building a solid side on the quiet, with last season's ninth place finish a really good achievement for the club. Would expect the same again.


Manager: Nigel Clough

2012/13 Position: 10th

Transfers In: Lee Grant (Burnley), Chris Martin (Coldplay), Johnny Russell (Dundee United), Craig Forsyth (Watford), John Eustace (Watford), Adam Smith (Tottenham Hotspur)

Transfers Out: Gareth Roberts (released), Frank Fielding (Bristol City), Luke Adams (Wellington Phoenix), John Brayford (Cardiff City)

Player to Watch: Johnny Russell is a Scottish striker brought in from Dundee United. He hit 20 goals in all competitions last season and Clough will be hoping for more of the same.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Mid-table.


Manager: Paul Dickov

2012/13 Position: 1st (League One)

Transfers In: Marc de Val (Real Madrid), Harry Forrester (Brentford), Dean Furman (Oldham Athletic), Mark Duffy (Scunthorpe United), Luke McCullough (Manchester United)

Transfers Out: Neil Sullivan (released)

Player to Watch: Billy Paynter - much travelled striker scored thirteen goals for Doncaster last season and he'll be expected to hit the same again.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: With a manager new to this league, and a squad which has yet to add much by way of proven Championship quality it is reasonable to assume that a season of struggle awaits. Relegation candidates.


Manager: Mark Robins

2012/13 Position: 19th

Transfers In: Jake Carroll (St Patrick's Athletic), Adam Hammill (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Jon Stead (Bristol City), Martin Paterson (Burnley), James Vaughan (Norwich City), Jonathan Hogg (Watford), Cristian Lopez (Atletico Baleares)

Transfers Out: Lee Novak (Birmingham City), Tom Clarke (Preston North End), Alan Lee (Ipswich Town), Scott Arfield (Burnley)

Player to Watch: James Vaughan - so often touted as a "next big thing" in his youth, he found his career going slightly off track before a good loan spell at Huddersfield Town last season. Minus his strike partner Jermaine Beckford who has joined Bolton Wanderers it will be key to their fortunes that Vaughan can be as successful again.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Lower mid-table with the help of Vaughan's goals.


Manager: Mick McCarthy

2012/13 Position: 14th

Transfers In: Ryan Tunnicliffe, Frederic Veseli (Manchester United), Christophe Berra (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Dean Gerken, Cole Skuse, Paul Anderson (Bristol City), David McGoldrick (Nottingham Forest), Daryl Murphy (Celtic), Jay Tabb (Reading)

Transfers Out: Jay Emanuel-Thomas (Bristol City), Michael Chopra (Blackpool), Lee Martin (Millwall)

Player to Watch: Ryan Tunnicliffe has been brought in on loan from Manchester United where he is highly thought of. A spell in the Championship under McCarthy's tutelage should aid his development.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Top ten - some good signings made by McCarthy should see them improve on last season's 14th placed finish.


Manager: Brian McDermott

2012/13 Position: 13th

Transfers In: Matt Smith (Oldham Athletic), Luke Murphy (Crewe Alexandra), Noel Hunt (Reading)

Transfers Out: Steve Morison (Millwall), Leigh Bromby, Paul Connolly, Davide Somma, Patrick Kisnorbo, Paul Rachubka, Sanchez Payne (released)

Player to Watch: Sam Byram, versatile young defender brought through the Leeds system who made 44 appearances last season. A good prospect.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Top ten finish, but could do with the addition of another striker or two.


Manager: Nigel Pearson

2012/13 Position: 6th

Transfers In: Zoumana Bagayogo (Tranmere Rovers)

Transfers Out: Joey Jones (Yeovil Town), Jermaine Beckford (Bolton Wanderers)

Player to Watch: Chris Wood - the New Zealand striker made a huge impact when he joined from West Bromwich Albion in January 2013, and though they dried up somewhat after he still came out with 22 league goals for Millwall and Leicester City over the course of the season.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: I think Leicester City will struggle initially, and Pearson will lose his job but they should end up in the top ten and possibly even in the Play Offs again with some astute signings.


Manager: Tony Mowbray

2012/13 Position: 16th

Transfers In: Dean Whitehead (Stoke City), Jozsef Varga (Debreceni VSC)

Transfers Out: Christian Burgess (Hartlepool United), Scott McDonald, Nick Bailey (Millwall), Stephen McManus (Motherwell), Merouane Zemmama, Kieron Dyer (released)

Player to Watch: Rhys Williams - the one time Bolton Wanderers target recovered from a serious injury last year to return to captain the side as they finished a disappointing 16th. They'll need to improve in order to keep him at the club.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Lower mid table beckons for Mowbray's men.


Manager: Steve Lomas

2012/13 Position: 20th

Transfers In: Jermaine Easter (Crystal Palace), Stephen Bywater (Sheffield Wednesday), Steve Morison (Leeds United), Lee Martin (Ipswich Town), Richard Chaplow (Southampton), Nick Bailey, Scott McDonald (Middlesbrough)

Transfers Out: Chris Taylor (Blackburn Rovers), Steve Mildenhall (Bristol Rovers), Tamika Mkandawire (Shrewsbury Town), Maik Taylor, Therry Racon (released), Shaun Batt (Leyton Orient)

Player to Watch: New manager Steve Lomas faces his first season in English League management following a successful spell in Scotland but as an ex-West Ham man he must overcome terrace suspicion to win over the notorious Millwall crowd.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Relegation candidates.


Manager: Billy Davies

2012/13 Position: 8th

Transfers In: Dorus De Vries (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Gonzalo Jara (West Bromwich Albion), Eric Lichaj (Aston Villa), Jamie Paterson (Walsall), Djamel Abdoun (Olympiakos), Jamie Mackie (Queens Park Rangers)

Transfers Out: David McGoldrick (Ipswich Town), Lewis McGugan (Watford)

Player to Watch: Jamie Mackie - a good solid grafter, if unspectacular, who will be at home in the Championship and should add to a relatively weak strikeforce.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Top six, but at a club where self-implosion is a trait, and with a manager who could create an argument in an empty room it's tough to expect a season without drama.


Manager: Harry Redknapp

2012/13 Position: 20th (Premier League)

Transfers In: Danny Simpson (Newcastle United), Richard Dunne (Aston Villa), Karl Henry (Wolverhampton Wanderers)

Transfers Out: Djibril Cisse (Kuban Krasnodar), Jay Bothroyd, Tal Ben Haim, DJ Campbell, Radek Cerny, Rob Hulse (released), Christopher Samba (Anzhi Makachakackalacala), Jamie Mackie (Nottingham Forest), Jose Bosingwa (Trabzonspor)

Player to Watch: Loic Remy - a Premier League striker who, if QPR can hold onto, should score 20 plus in the Championship.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: A season of struggle, coupled with the November sacking of Harry Redknapp who then goes on to buy the club and installs Rosie the dog as manager and centre forward. Redknapp leaves the club in March claiming that he's a "fackin football manager". That, or top six.


Manager: Nigel Adkins

2012/13 Position: 19th (Premier League)

Transfers In: Wayne Bridge (Manchester City), Royston Drenthe (Alania Vladikavkaz), Danny Williams (Hoffenheim)

Transfers Out: Uche Ikpeazu (Watford), Noel Hunt (Leeds United)

Player to Watch: Adam Federici is a goalkeeper who excelled in the Premier League and should provide a solid base from which they can attack the division.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: A boring and pointless club in a boring and pointless part of the world. Will no doubt bore everyone into submission and end up in the top six.


Manager: Dave Jones

2012/13 Position: 18th

Transfers In: Jacques Maghoma (Burton Albion), Jeremy Helan (Manchester City), Atdhe Nuhiu (Rapid Vienna)

Transfers Out: Bastien Hery (Rochdale), Chris O'Grady (Barnsley), Hayden White (Bolton Wanderers), Stephen Bywater (Millwall)

Player to Watch: Jacques Maghoma is a speedy winger who scored 18 goals last season for Burton Albion and was watched by a host of Championship clubs.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Lower mid table likely, again the absence of a dominant goalscorer could cost them as the season wears on.


Manager: Gianfranco Zola

2012/13 Position: 3rd

Transfers In: Uche Ikpeazu (Reading), David McGoldrick (Nottingham Forest), Marco Cassetti, Cristian Battochio, Almen Abdi, Diego Fabbrini, Gabriele Angella, Marco Davide Faroani, Joel Ekstrand (Udinese), Javier Acuna, Daniel Pudil, Iriney, Ikechi Anya (Granada), Reece Brown (Manchester United)

Transfers Out: Chris Iwelumo (Scunthorpe United), Jack Bonham (Brentford), Mark Yeates (Bradford City), Stephen McGinn (Sheffield United), Craig Forsyth, John Eustace (Derby County), Lee Hodson (MK Dons), Carl Dickinson (Port Vale), Jonathan Hogg (Huddersfield Town)

Player to Watch: Troy Deeney - last season's top scorer Matej Vydra has returned to parent club Udinese and so the onus is on Deeney to step up to the plate.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Top six, the bloody cheats.


Manager: Owen Coyle

2012/13 Position: 18th (Premier League)

Transfers In: Chris McCann (Burnley), Stephen Crainey (Blackpool), Thomas Rogne (Celtic), James Perch (Newcastle United), Scott Carson (Bursaspor), Marc-Antoine Fortune (West Bromwich Albion), Grant Holt (Norwich City), Juan Carlos Garcia (CD Olimpia)

Transfers Out: David Jones, Albert Crusat, Franco Di Santo, Adrian Lopez (released), Arouna Kone, Antolin Alcarez (Everton), Filip Orsula (MSV Duisberg), Ronnie Stam (Standard Liege), Roman Golobart (FC Koln), Mauro Boselli (Leon)

Player to Watch: Owen Coyle. The ex-Bolton Wanderers manager is in his first job since being sacked in October 2012. He has a tough task on his hands motivating a squad which suffered relegation last year. He has had money to spend and has brought in eight new signings to date. Question marks remain over his ability and the Wigan supporters are unlikely to be patient if things are not going well.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Top six, but under a new manager.


Manager: Gary Johnson

2012/13 Position: 4th (League One)

Transfers In: Joel Grant (Wycombe Wanderers), Sam Hoskins (Southampton), Joe Jones (Leicester City), Danny Seaborne (Southampton), Liam Davis (Oxford United), Nana Ofori -Twumasi (Northampton Town), Alan Tate (Swansea City), Billy Clifford (Chelsea)

Transfers Out: None

Player to Watch: Alan Tate - the former Swansea City defender will be crucial to their chances of staying in the division and will be heavily relied upon from the outset.

Lion of Vienna Prediction: Just here for the ride. Relegated by Christmas.