Before the start of 2019
After a five-month this Championship season, with nearly every top flights in second-tier delivering wins/losses, spectators deserved a Santa Claus rally.
While there are several more sessions in reversed fixtures in 2019, the Christmas feel-good factor is conspicuously absent/ bullishly remained the winter transfer market after some up/down results before the end of 2018.
According to _connect Analytics, Hull City is on course for their best run December on record and remains firmly in number 14th place, typically defined as a rocket of 8 places from last month low 22nd place.
In top-half level, Leeds United won all the matches except losing to Hull City in the final match of the month while they are maintaining the 3 points lead over the 2nd place Norwich City.
The play-off places could be slightly clear when Derby County beat Norwich City. But Nottingham Forest won none this month and lost three times with two points in five games. They now have six points adrift of the 6th Rams.
In bottom-half level, Hull City won five and draw one in their last six matches and only nine points below the Top six play-off places.
They could be a late challenger in those chasing pack if they maintain this kind of form to win as many games as they could.
The 19th Wigan Athletic could slipped into even worser situation – a drop of 4 places from last month – in some bad performances of their year at home matches such as lose 1-0 to Derby and 3-0 to Birmingham in this spell.
EFL cup Semi-Final on 7th and 21st January
Do Middlesbrough skip the round and make any progress from Clough’s sight?
Disappointed Tony Pulis and his Boro eluded from the Championship visitors in their start of FA cup journey after being eliminated by Nigel Clough’s Burton in League cup and will face Peterborough United, who defeat the finalist of 2013 League cup, Bradford City in last round and beat Aston Villa last season in the third round.
A taste of VAR flavour
In Championship game, a Video Assistant Referee (VAR) could be a strange test for some of those. But three teams including Reading and two teams who promoted from League One this season will have the taste of VAR.
5 January, 2019 Saturday
Manchester United vs Reading
Newcastle United vs Blackburn Rovers
6 January, 2019 Sunday
Manchester City vs Rotherham United
Given that the latest insight from FA cup fixtures shows at least 4 championship teams will be in the next round – 4th round encounters.
5 January 2019 FA cup Round Three
(Bold means Championship Team)
Bolton Wanderers vs Walsall
Millwall vs Hull City
Brentford vs Oxford United
Sheffield Wednesday vs Luton Town
Preston North End vs Doncaster Rovers
Chelsea vs Nottingham Forest
Derby County vs Southampton
Accrington Stanley vs Ipswich Town
Bristol City vs Huddersfield Town
Shrewsbury Town vs Stoke City
West Ham United vs Birmingham City
Queens Park Rangers vs Leeds United
Sheffield United vs Barnet
Norwich City vs Portsmouth
West Bromwich Albion vs Wigan Athletic
Middlesbrough vs Peterborough
Aston Villa vs Swansea City
Did you know? Club registration under January transfer window
Clubs have agreed that no new players registered at the start of the window will be eligible to play in Match week between 1-3 January 2019.