The League One promotion race is extremely tight as we head into the final few games of the campaign. With most teams having just nine games left to play nothing is yet confirmed. Three teams are still in the running of the League One title and more importantly the two automatic promotion places. Blackburn and Wigan, both teams relegated last season, are the favourites to secure the top two position come the end of the season. Shrewsbury, the surprise package of the season, are the other team still in the running for automatic promotion.
The biggest battle is going to be for the playoffs places. With a lot of the clubs still in with a chance to make the playoffs having to play each other it can all change quickly as the season goes on. We’ve taken a brief look at each of the candidates we think could be gaining promotion to the Championship next season and summarised their chances of promotion below. Take a look and tweet us your thoughts into @footyaccums!
Current Position: 1st
Run in: Bradford, MK Dons, Southend, Gillingham, Bristol Rovers, Peterborough, Doncaster, Charlton, Oxford United
Blackburn have been top of the League for the last four games and will be hoping they can stay there come the end of the season. After a few loses early in the season they have picked up their form and have only lost once since October. With a decent run in they will be excepting to be in the top two come the end of the season. Bradley Dack has been the main man for them this season after signing from Gillingham in the summer. It was a big boost for them to keep hold of him after a big money bid from a Championship club in January. He has scored fifteen goals from midfield for them so far this season and doesn’t look to be slowing down. With the addition of Adam Armstrong in January Blackburn haven’t been short for goals, Armstrong has scored seven in twelve games. They have failed to score only once since October and are in good shape for automatic promotion this season.
Promotion: Best Priced at 1/6 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Top 2 Finish: Best Priced at 2/7 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Blackburn manager Tony Mowbray will hope his side can bounce straight back up to the Championship
Current Position: 2nd
Run in: AFC Wimbledon, Rochdale, Oxford United, Bradford, Charlton, Bury, Peterborough, Blackpool, MK Dons
Paul Hurst was appointed manager when Shrewsbury were rock bottom of the table last season. He guided them to a great escape, finishing two points above the relegation zone. Hurst has managed to get his team performing to the level that saw them avoid relegation. They have been the surprise package this season and will be in the hunt for a top two finish come the end of the season. Shrewsbury have been in the top two for almost the whole season. With their eighteenth place finish last season they have been tipped to fall away throughout the year but have remained strong. Going forward they have not been prolific only scoring fifty goals so far. It has been their defence that has kept them in this position, they boast the second best defence in the League and are a hard team to beat. If they can keep grinding out results they may sneak into the top two.
Promotion: Best Priced at 1/1 at *** – CLICK HERE
Top 2 Finish: Best Priced at 3/2 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Shrewsbury Town have dominated a lot of games this season and will be hoping for a top two finish
Current Position: 3rd
Run in: Bury, Oldham, Portsmouth, MK Dons, Rochdale, Rotherham, Oxford United, Fleetwood, Bristol Rovers, AFC Wimbledon, Doncaster
Promotion: Best Priced at 1/14 at Betway – CLICK HERE
Top 2 Finish: Best Priced at 1/9 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Wigan were favourites to gain promotion at the start of the season. They were relegated from the Championship last season but have managed to keep a large part of their squad and add some strong players. Wigan arguable have the best squad in League One, the squad has been put to test by the amount of games they’ve played this season. The Latics went on a great FA Cup run reaching the quarter finals. This has meant the games have been coming thick and fast at this stage of the season to pick up the games they’ve missed. They are two points of the top but have two games in hand. Wigan are in a very strong position to go on and win the League. With the striking power of Will Grigg, James Vaughan and Nick Powell it is hard to see any team stopping them.
Wigan have to best squad in the League and its no surprise they have a chance to win the title at these stage
Current Position: 4th
Run in: Southend, Peterborough, Charlton, Fleetwood, Wigan, Gillingham, Bristol Rovers, Plymouth Argyle, Blackpool
Promotion: Best Priced at 5/2 at *** – CLICK HERE
Top 6 Finish: Best Priced at 1/250 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Rotherham finished rock bottom of the Championship last season, only managing five wins all year getting twenty-three points the entire season. After a very poor 16/17 it wouldn’t be a surprise if they struggled again this season. They have had patchy form throughout the season. With Kieffer Moore leading the line and free scoring at times they looked set challenge for the playoffs but when he returned to Ipswich in January they were tipped to struggle. However, it was quite the opposite, Rotherham went on a run of seven wins in a row after his departure. They are currently nine points ahead of seventh and in no real trouble of dropping out of the playoffs based on current form.
Kieffer Moore scored 13 goals in 22 games before being sold to Barnsley
Current Position: 5th
Run in: Rochdale, Oxford United, Plymouth Argyle, AFC Wimbledon, Charlton, Walsall, MK Dons, Bradford
Promotion: Best Priced at 7/1 at *** – CLICK HERE
Top 6 Finish: Best Priced at 4/7 at Betway – CLICK HERE
After a third place finish last season Scunthorpe fans were hoping their side could go one step further and finish inside the top two this time out. At the end of 2017 they were still in the hunt of a top two finish. However, they have only won twice since the turn of the year, picking up twelve points from a possible thirty-nine. This run of form has seen them go winless in their last seven and are in real danger of dropping out of the playoff places. Scunthorpe have played a game more than everyone else and will drop out of the playoffs if the games in hand are won. Despite their current form they have the easiest of the run-ins, only playing one of the teams around them. If they can get positive results against the teams in the lower half of the table they may be able to hold on but an upturn in form is a must.
Josh Morris remains as The Iron’s best contributor for goals for a second season in a row
Current Position: 6th
Run in: Charlton, Southend, Scunthorpe, Peterborough, Portsmouth, Northampton, Rochdale, Rotherham, Gillingham
Promotion: Best Priced at 12/1 at Betway – CLICK HERE
Top 6 Finish: Best Priced at 11/8 at Betway – CLICK HERE
Plymouth Argyle fans have had a season to remember. After promotion from League Two last season a mid-table finish would be expected. The Pilgrims were bottom of the League after sixteen games and with a poor discipline record that had seen them pick up five red cards in those games, it seemed things were falling apart at Home Park. They have also had serious goalkeeper issue, and have used seven goalkeepers so far this season after a series of unfortunate injuries. However, despite a dreadful start to the season the chairman kept faith in manager Derek Adams. His faith has come good. Plymouth have gone on a run that has seen them lose just once in seventeen games. Argyle are playing four of the teams fighting for playoff places in their run-in, the fate of their season is very much in their hands. If they manage to reach the playoffs in this form they should be one of the favourites to win at Wembley.
Graham Carey has been Plymouth Argyle’s main man this season and will have a big say in whether they reach the playoffs
Current Position: 7th
Run in: Bristol Rovers, Rotherham, Northampton, Plymouth Argyle, Rochdale, Blackburn, Shrewsbury, Fleetwood, Portsmouth
Promotion: Best Priced at 9/1 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Top 6 Finish: Best Priced at 5/4 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Peterborough have had a good season, after four consecutive top half finishes they’re making a push for a playoff place this season. They looked in good shape to finish inside the top six at the end of 2017 but have gone on a run that saw them win only one game in nine and subsequently dropped out. They have won three of their last four games and are only a point behind Plymouth in sixth. Peterborough do have the hardest run-in on paper in comparison to the other teams. They have still yet to play both Blackburn and Shrewsbury who are fighting for the League title. Also playing both Fleetwood and Rochdale who are at the bottom end of the table fighting for survival. The Posh have goals in Jack Marriott, twenty-three this term, and the recent appointment of experienced manager Steve Evans may be the difference for them this season.
Steve Evans have turned Peterborough’s form around since joining at the end of February
Current Position: 8th
Run in: Oxford United, Walsall, Wigan, Rochdale, Plymouth Argyle, Bradford, Charlton, Bury, Peterborough
Promotion: Best Priced at 28/1 at *** – CLICK HERE
Top 6 Finish: Best Priced at 4/1 at Skybet – CLICK HERE
Portsmouth gained promotion last season, winning League Two on a dramatic last day of the season. With the size of their club and impressive fan base they were one of the favourites to be inside the top six at the beginning of the season. After losing manager Paul Cook to Wigan before the start of the season they brought in experienced Kenny Jackett to take the helm. They will be happy with a top half finish after a steady season they have had. They have been in bad form of late and will need a serious improvement if they wish to finish inside the top six. This season will be a good place to build from to make a good promotion push next season.
Portsmouth need to go on a good run if they hope to finish inside the top six
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