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2020-21 Sky Bet Championship guide: Cardiff, Coventry and Derby

1 September 2020

With the 2020-21 Sky Bet Championship just two weeks away, we’re putting together a guide on our upcoming opponents, highlighting their previous seasons and key players the Canaries may be keeping an eye on.

AFC Bournemouth, Barnsley and Birmingham City
Blackburn Rovers, Brentford and Bristol City

Cardiff City

cardiff guide.jpg

Manager: Neil Harris
Position last season: 5th (playoff semi finals)
Top scorer last season: Lee Tomlin (8)

Having finished 18th in the Premier League in 2018-19, Cardiff City aimed to bounce straight back up at the first time of asking, and they weren’t far off doing so.

Eleventh place with just ten games to go, Neil Harris led his side to clinch fifth-place and earn their rightful spot in the play-offs in the final knockings of the season, just falling short in the semi-finals against Fulham.

Whilst no Cardiff players managed to reach double figures in goals last season, it’s worth noting that seven Bluebirds managed to reach five goals each in the league, so it was a case of the whole team contributing, rather than one or two standout individuals.

Coventry City

coventry guide.jpg

Manager: Mark Robins
Position last season: 1st (promoted from League One)
Top scorer last season: Matt Godden (14)

Declared the champions of League One after their season was unanimously voted to finish early, Coventry now come up to the Championship with some more silverware in their trophy cabinet, as they look to make a good impression in their return to the second division.

Back in the Championship for the first time since the 2011-12 season, the question is can Coventry do enough to stay up in their first season back?

The Sky Blues will be without star-player Sam McCallum after he signed for the Canaries back in the January transfer window of the 2019-20 season, before finishing off the season on loan to his former club.

Derby County

derby guide.jpg

Manager: Phillip Cocu
Position last season: 10th
Top scorer last season: Martyn Waghorn (12)

With the 2020-21 season marking the 13th consecutive campaign that Derby reside in the Championship, the Rams have established themselves as one of the gatekeepers of the division and prove to be a competitive side each year.

Uncharacteristic initial turbulence at the start of the 2019-20 season may have been put down to the transition of managers from Frank Lampard to Phillip Cocu, as Derby won just two of their first ten games while drawing six of them.

Since then, Cocu’s side began battling for consecutive wins, seeing them climb the table once more. A play-off spot six points away wasn’t meant to be however, as they lost four in a row in the dying embers of the season, seeing the Rams forced to settle for tenth.

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