Ladies and gentlemen, football is back! That's right folks, this Sunday, Aston Villa's Championship campaign gets underway at Hillsborough, as Roberto Di Matteo's side take on Sheffield Wednesday. But before the return of football, it's the return of the 7500 to Holte pre-season roundtable. Hooray! In part one, we take a look at the promotion and relegation candidates in the division.
Who will win the Championship this season?
James: Aston Villa
Alex: I’ll go with the best team in the league over the last few years, and that’s Derby County. They have to get it done at some point, right?
Robert: Brighton. With no evidence for that claim whatsoever.
Matt Villan: Newcastle United
Herbert: Newcastle United
Matt F: Newcastle United
Elis: I refuse to pick Newcastle, because it would be hilarious if they didn't do well this season. So Sheffield Wednesday.
Bennett: Newcastle, but if Villa can make the right signings (CF, midfielder, and a winger depending on what happens with Sinclair) and unload some less than popular players they'll be up there. That's a big if, but it's not completely unrealistic.
Which sides do you think will get promoted and relegated from the division this season?
James: Brighton and Newcastle will come up with Villa whilst Rotherham will likely be relegated. The league is too open for me to vouch for other relegation candidates.
Alex: Joining Derby and Villa going up, I’ll stick with something predictable and bring Brighton, who had a great season last year, up in second place.. At the other end, I have to start with Burton to drop, and I’ll add Rotherham and Preston to that list.
Adam: Promoted: Newcastle, Villa, Brighton. Relegated: Burton, Birmingham, Leeds
Robert: Brighton, Newcastle, Villa to head up (Villa pull it out in a gritty playoff). Fulham, Wolves, and Reading down.
Matt Villan: Promoted: Newcastle, Norwich and Wednesday/Villa. Relegated: Burton, Fulham and Barnsley
Herbert: Newcastle United, Aston Villa, Sheffield Wednesday. Relegated are Burton, Blackburn, and Leeds United.
Matt F: Promoted: Newcastle United, Brighton & Hove Albion, Aston Villa. Relegated: Rotherham United, Barnsley, Birmingham City
Elis: Sheffield Wednesday, Newcastle and Cardiff to go up. Burton, Barnsley and Preston to drop.
Jack: Promoted: Newcastle, Derby County, Aston Villa. Relegated: Burton Albion, Barnsley, Huddersfield Town
Bennett: Newcastle, Villa, and Sheffield Wednesday for promotion. Wednesday over Wolves and Derby because having a day of the week in your team name and an owl for a mascot is fascinating. Burton, Rotterham, and Forest for relegation.
How about you guys? Let us know in the comments below and check back in each day this week for more predictions from our team!