As the 2020-21 Sky Bet Championship season gets closer by the day, we continue our guide to the upcoming opposition, highlighting their previous seasons and key players for the Canaries to keep an eye on.
Continuing on from AFC Bournemouth, Barnsley and Birmingham, today's guide previews two ever-improving mid-table sides and the previous play-off final runner-ups.
Manager: Tony Mowbray
Position last season: 11th
Top scorer last season: Adam Armstrong (17)
Bouncing straight back to the Championship after a brief stint in League One back in the 2017-18 season, Blackburn have only improved in their two seasons back in the second division, finishing 15th and 11th place since.
Struggling to get the 2019-20 season started on the right foot, Blackburn were looking like relegation candidates, until a sudden burst of form saw the Rovers shoot straight up the table, at one point going eight games undefeated with five wins.
Whilst continuing this form would’ve surely seen them competing for play-offs, a rocky end to the season saw Tony Mowbray’s side settle for 11th. With a short turnaround until the 2020-21 season, the Rovers will be looking to correct past wrongdoings and start how they mean to go on.
Manager: Thomas Frank
Position last season: 3rd
Top scorer last season: Ollie Watkins (26)
Their best season in the Championship since being promoted to the division back in the 2014-15 campaign, Brentford will surely feel hard done by that they couldn’t clinch promotion, instead falling at the final hurdle in a 2-1 loss to Fulham in the play-off final.
Interestingly, despite going on an eight-win run near the end of the season, Brentford at no point during the campaign moved up to second-place, West Bromwich Albion and Leeds United consistently holding the spots above them.
As Thomas Frank’s side nears promotion season-by-season, the 2020-21 venture may be where Brentford strike it lucky, should the Danish coach be able to extract even more out of his team.
Ollie Watkins was Brentford’s star man all season-long, scoring an impressive 25 goals in the league alone, leaving Frank with some work to do to keep his 24-year-old dangerman at the club.
Manager: Dean Holden
Position last season: 12th
Top scorer last season: Famara Diedhou (14)
Bearing the exact same win, loss and draw record as Blackburn Rovers, Bristol have had yet another mid-table season to add to their history. A powerful start set the side up nicely for the rest of the season, so much so that even a barrage of losses near the end of the campaign saw them finish in a strong 12th place.
Improving over the years to become a stable Championship side, after an 18th and 17th place finish in their two seasons back in the division, Bristol are now a solid side to compete in the league.
As Famara Diedhou became the side's top goalscorer for a second season in a row, the Senegal forward is showing no signs of slowing down, looking likely to carry this run of goalscoring form into a third consecutive season.