League One preview
A club-by-club look at the npower League One campaign
Last Updated: August 5, 2011 12:59pm
All eyes will be on last season's play-off finalists Huddersfield during the forthcoming npower League One campaign.
The Terriers were rampant for much of last term before falling at the final hurdle but have been installed as 5/1 favourites with Sky Bet to go up this term.
The loss of key players Anthony Pilkington and Lee Peltier have been offset by smart acquisitions, such as Tommy Miller and Danny Ward.
But Huddersfield are set to be pushed hard by the likes of Yorkshire neighbours Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United who will be desperate for a return to the Championship.
Here we take a club-by-club look at the sides battling for promotion from npower League One.
PREDICTED TOP 6
1: Sheffield Wednesday
5: Sheffield United
6: MK Dons
Manager: Lee Bradbury
Position last season: 6th
Ground: Dean Court. Capacity: 11,933
Players in: Darryl Flahavan (Portsmouth, free), Adam Barrett (Crystal Palace, undisclosed), Steven Gregory (AFC Wimbledon, undisclosed), Scott Malone (Wolves, loan until January), Nathan Byrne (Tottenham, season loan)
Players out: Danny Hollands (Charlton, free), Ben Williamson (Hyde, free), Jason Pearce (Portsmouth, undisclosed), Rhoys Wiggins (Charlton, undisclosed), Ryan Garry (retired), Anton Robinson (Huddersfield, undisclosed)
Key man: Danny Ings
Chances: Bournemouth's chances will depend on how they respond to last season's play-off semi-final defeat and if they can recreate last season's impressive home form. Another promotion push looks beyond them, though, with a mid-table finish much more likely.
Prediction: 15th Sky Bet odds: 25/1
Manager: Uwe Rosler
Position last season: 11th
Ground: Griffin Park. Capacity: 12,763
Players in: Shaleum Logan (Manchester City, free), Marcel Eger (St Pauli, free), Jonathan Douglas (Swindon, free), Clayton Donaldson (Crewe, free), Niall McGinn (Celtic, season loan), Clayton Donaldson (Crewe, free)
Players out: Stephen Wright (released), Lewis Grabban (Rotherham, free), Nicky Forster (retired), David Hunt (Crawley, free), David McCracken (St Johnstone, free), Chris Bush (AFC Wimbledon, free)
Key man: Clayton Donaldson
Chances: Rosler's appointment was a surprise but a few astute signings have come in and the Bees will fancy their chances of beating last season's mid-table finish.
Prediction: 9th Sky Bet odds: 12/1
Manager: Richie Barker
Position last season: 2nd in League 2
Ground: Gigg Lane. Capacity: 11, 841
Players in: Mark Hughes (North Queensland Fury, free), Mark Cullen (Hull, on loan until December 31)
Players out: Kyle Bennett (Doncaster, undisclosed), Nicky Ajose (Peterborough, £300,000)
Key man: Ryan Lowe
Chances: The Shakers are a small fish in a bigger pond this season, competing against clubs with far bigger budgets. Even Lowe's goals may struggle to keep them out of relegation danger.
Prediction: 22nd Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Greg Abbott
Position last season: 12th
Ground: Brunton Park. Capacity: 16,981
Players in: Andy Welsh (Yeovil, free), Stephen O'Halloran (Coventry, free), Jon-Paul McGovern (Swindon, free), Liam Noble (Sunderland, six-month loan)
Players out: Kevan Hurst (Walsall, free), Marc-Antoine Gbarssin, Jason Price, Scott Dobie, Tony Caig, Steven Swinglehurst, Nahki Wells, Ryan Bowman (all released), Sean McDaid (retired)
Key man: Peter Murphy
Chances: Carlisle blew hot and cold last season with their League One challenge perhaps distracted by their Johnstone's Paint Trophy triumph. Abbott has been able to keep his better players this summer and has added the likes of Welsh, O'Halloran and McGovern, so a top-10 finish beckons for the Cumbrians.
Prediction: 7th Sky Bet odds: 33/1
Manager: Chris Powell
Position last season: 13th
Ground: The Valley. Capacity: 27,111
Players in: Danny Hollands (Bournemouth, free), John Sullivan (Millwall, free), Bradley Pritchard (Hayes & Yeading, free) Nick Pope (Bury Town, free), Paul Hayes (Preston, free), Cedric Evina (Oldham, free), Mikel Alonso (Tenerife, free), Matt Taylor (Exeter, free), Ruben Bover (Halesowen, free), Dale Stephens (Oldham, undisclosed), Danny Green (Dagenham, free), Rhoys Wiggins (Bournemouth, undisclosed), Michael Morrison (Sheffield Wednesday, undisclosed)
Players out: Christian Dailly, Jon Fortune, Kyel Reid, Alex Stavrinou, Michael Stewart, Tamer Tuna, Kelly Youga (all released), Therry Racon (Millwall, free), Ross Worner (Aldershot, free), Carl Jenkinson (Arsenal, £1million), Jose Semedo (Sheffield Wednesday, free), Joe Anyinsah (Bristol Rovers, free), Miguel Llera (Blackpool, free), Alan McCormack (Swindon, undisclosed)
Key man: Bradley Wright-Phillips
Chances: Rookie manager Powell has been backed in the transfer market but is under pressure to get off to a good start with the club's new owners expecting promotion.
Prediction: 4th Sky Bet odds: 15/2
Manager: John Sheridan
Position last season: 1st in League 2
Ground: B2net Stadium. Capacity: 10, 400
Players in: Mark Randall (Arsenal, free), Nathan Smith (Yeovil, free)
Players out: Ian Breckin, Shane Redmond (both released), Craig Davies (Barnsley, £700,000)
Key man: Dean Morgan
Chances: Were promoted at a canter last season but without Deane Smalley - now with Oxford after his loan to the Spireites from Oldham came to an end - and Craig Davies the Spireites have lost the best part of 40 goals. That will be tough to replace but they should have just enough to avoid relegation.
Prediction: 20th Sky Bet odds: 28/1
Manager: John Ward
Position last season: 10th
Ground: Weston Homes Community Stadium. Capacity: 10,084
Players in: Michael Rose (Swindon, free), Tom Eastman (Ipswich, free), Karl Duguid (Plymouth, free)
Players out: Simon Hackney (Rochdale, free), David Perkins (Barnsley, free), Medy Elito (Dagenham & Redbridge, free), Lee Beevers (Walsall, free), Morten Knudsen, Conor Powell, Sam Corcoran (all released)
Key man: Ian Henderson
Chances: After following up their eighth-placed finish in 2009-10 with 10th last season, the Us will desperately be looking to climb into that top six but it will not be easy among another tough line-up in League One.
Prediction: 14th Sky Bet odds: 40/1
Manager: Paul Tisdale
Position last season: 8th
Ground: St James Park. Capacity: 9,036
Players in: Guillem Bauza (Northampton, free), Danny Coles (Bristol Rovers, free), Lenny Pidgeley (Bradford, free), Callum McNish (unattached), Kallum Keane (unattached)
Players out: James Norwood (Forest Green, free), Joe Heath (Hereford, free), Paul Jones (Peterborough, free), Jamie Cureton (Leyton Orient, free), Ben Watson, Jake Thomson, Matt Armstrong-Ford, Noah Keats, Dan Western, Kyle Bassett (all released), Rob Edwards, Marcus Stewart, Andrew Marriott, Paul Tisdale, Bertrand Cozic (all retired), Matt Taylor (Charlton, free)
Key man: John O'Flynn
Chances: Exeter finished their first season back in League One in a highly-commendable eighth position and another push for the play-offs looks within reach, especially after a summer of canny recruitment.
Prediction: 10th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Mick Wadsworth
Position last season: 16th
Ground: Victoria Park. Capacity: 7,856
Players in: Nathan Luscombe (Sunderland, free), Nolberto Solano (Hull, free), James Poole (Manchester City, undisclosed), Colin Nish (Hibernian, free), Jack Baldwin (Faversham, undisclosed)
Players out: Armann Bjornsson, Billy Greulich, Michael Mackay, Dylan Purvis, Fabian Yantorno (all released), Leon McSweeney (Leyton Orient, free), Joe Gamble (Limerick, free), Denis Behan (Limerick, free)
Key man: Antony Sweeney
Chances: The arrival of Solano in the summer has given Hartlepool a boost, while Sweeney has signed a new deal and manager Wadsworth has also added Poole, Luscombe and Nish to his squad. Pools finished 16th last season but look strong enough to avoid any relegation threat.
Prediction: 11th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Lee Clark will be hoping to go one better with Huddersfield this time
Manager: Lee Clark
Position last season: 3rd
Ground: Galpharm Stadium. Capacity: 24,500
Players in: Calum Woods (Dunfermline, free), Oscar Gobern (Southampton, tribunal), Donal McDermott (Manchester City, tribunal), Tommy Miller (Sheffield Wednesday, free), Liam Cooper (Hull, season loan), Danny Ward (Bolton, undisclosed), Damien Johnson (Plymouth, season loan)
Players out: Lee Peltier (Leicester, undisclosed), Leigh Franks (released), Anthony Pilkington (Norwich, undisclosed), Chris Atkinson (Darlington, loan until January)
Key man: Gary Roberts
Chances: Huddersfield manager Clark will be under more pressure to secure Championship football for the Terriers after their play-off final defeat in May, but despite losing key players Pilkington and Peltier, seven new signings will add fresh impetus to keep them in touch with the early pace-setters. Could finally be their year.Prediction: 2nd Sky Bet odds: 5/1
Manager: Russell Slade
Position last season: 7th
Ground: Matchroom Stadium. Capacity: 9,271
Players in: Scott Cuthbert (Swindon, free), Leon McSweeney (Hartlepool, free), Jamie Cureton (Exeter, free), Marc Laird (Millwall, free), David Mooney (Reading, free)
Players out: Ryan Jarvis, Harry Beautyman (both released), Aaron Brown (Aldershot, free), Andrew Whing (Oxford, free), Adam Chambers (Walsall, free), Scott McGleish (Bristol Rovers, free)
Key man: Stephen Dawson
Chances: The Os over-achieved last season, narrowly missing out on a play-off place and memorably drawing with Arsenal in the FA Cup. A repeat looks unlikely but Slade's side can match anyone on their day.
Prediction: 12th Sky Bet odds: 28/1
Manager: Karl Robinson
Position last season: 5th
Ground: Stadium MK. Capacity: 22,000
Players in: Dean Bowditch (Yeovil, free) Darren Potter (Sheffield Wednesday, free), Jay O'Shea (Birmingham, free), Ian McLoughlin (Ipswich, free), Jude Stirling (Notts County, free)
Players out: Sean O'Hanlon, Danny Woodwards, Jude Stirling, Stuart Searle (released), Peter Leven (Oxford, free)
Key man: Stephen Gleeson
Chances: Another defeat in the play-offs left the Dons as nearly men again last season. However, they may once again need the end-of-season lottery this time around with Robinson's men coming up short for an automatic push.
Prediction: 6th Sky Bet odds: 16/1
Neal Bishop will be key for Notts County this term
Manager: Martin Allen
Position last season: 19th
Ground: Meadow Lane. Capacity: 20,300
Players in: Alan Sheehan (Swindon, free), Jude Stirling, Julian Kelly (Reading, free), Ishmel Demontagnac (Blackpool, free), Hamza Bencherif (Macclesfield, free), Jeff Hughes (Bristol Rovers, free), Charlie Allen (Dagenham & Redbridge, free)
Players out: David Grof, Kevin Smith, Alan Gow, Febian Brandy, Graeme Lee, Njogu Demba-Nyren, Warren Feeney (all released)
Key man: Neal Bishop
Chances: Allen expects big things from his side in his first full season as manager. Some astute signings have strengthened the squad but anything more than a top-half finish would probably represent over-achievement.
Prediction: 13th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Paul Dickov
Position last season: 17th
Ground: Boundary Park. Capacity: 13, 559
Players in: Jean-Yves M'Voto (Sunderland, free), Alex Cisak (Accrington, undisclosed), Zander Diamond (Aberdeen, free), Matt Smith (Solihull Moors, undisclosed), Matteh Lund (Stoke, season loan), Sam Johnstone (Manchester United, season loan)
Players out: Reuben Hazell (Shrewsbury, free), Cedric Evina (Charlton, free), Dale Stephens (Charlton, undisclosed), Lewis Alessandra (Morecambe, free), Dean Brill (released), Andy Todd (released), Ritchie Jones (Bradford, free), Deane Smalley (Oxford, undisclosed), Josh Ollerenshaw (released), Rod McDonald (released).
Key man: Jean-Yves M'Voto
Chances: Dickov found life tough last term in his debut season in management but he has shipped out a number of players and will hope for increased competitiveness among his squad.
Prediction: 19th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Phil Brown
Position last season: 22nd in the Championship
Ground: Deepdale. Capacity: 22, 225
Players in: Clarke Carlisle (Burnley, season loan), Graham Alexander (Burnley, free), Brian McClean (unattached), Ian Turner (unattached)
Players out: Billy Jones (West Brom, free), Sean St Ledger (Leicester, undisclosed), Paul Hayes (Charlton, free), Chris Brown (Doncaster, free); Neal Trotman (Rochdale, free), Andy Lonergan (Leeds, undisclosed), Keith Treacy (Burnley, undisclosed)
Key man: Neil Mellor
Chances: Phil Brown could not save Preston from relegation last season but he gradually made his mark at Deepdale and will be expected to guide his men into the play-offs as a bare minimum.
Prediction: 3rd Sky Bet odds: 13/2
Manager: Steve Eyre
Position last season: 9th
Ground: Spotland. Capacity: 10, 249
Players in: Ashley Grimes (Millwall, free), Simon Hackney (Colchester, free), Marc Twaddle (Falkirk, free), Stephen Darby (Liverpool, season loan), Neal Trotman (Preston, free), David Lucas (Swindon, free), Paul Marshall (unattached)
Players out: Matt Done, Scott Wiseman (both Barnsley, undisclosed), Matt Flynn, Robbie Williams (released), Owain Fon Williams (Tranmere, free), Anthony Elding (Grimsby, undisclosed)
Key man: Gary Jones
Chances: Keith Hill quit Dale to join Barnsley in the summer and took key defenders Done and Wiseman with him to Oakwell. New boss Eyre has drafted in five new players, including Darby on loan from Liverpool, but could struggle to keep Dale in touch with the play-off chasers.
Prediction: 23rd Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Alan Knill
Position last season: 24th in the Championship
Ground: Glanford Park. Capacity: 9,183
Players in: Jordan Robertson (St Johnstone, free), Jimmy Ryan (Accrington, undisclosed), Andy Barcham (Gillingham, free)
Players out: Rory Coleman, Johnathan Williams, Paris Cowan-Hall, Andy Hughes (all released), Ian Morris (Torquay, free), Josh Wright (released), David Mirfin (Watford, free), Joe Murphy (Coventry, free), Rob Jones (Sheffield Wednesday, free)
Key man: Jimmy Ryan
Chances: Knill is an impressive young boss and will be quietly confident of orchestrating a push for promotion with the quality he has at his disposal.
Prediction: 8th Sky Bet odds: 14/1
Manager: Danny Wilson
Position last season: 23rd in the Championship
Nickname: The Blades
Ground: Bramall Lane
Players in: Jean-Francois Lescinel (Swindon, free), Danny Philliskirk (Chelsea, undisclosed), Chris Porter (Derby, free), Ryan Flynn (Falkirk, free)
Players out: Jamie Ward (Derby, undisclosed), Darius Henderson (Milwall, undisclosed), Kingsley James (Port Vale, free), Phil Roe (Port Vale, free), Mark Yeates (Watford, undisclosed)
Key man: Chris Morgan
Chances: Former Sheffield Wednesday favourite Wilson was not the most popular of appointments to replace Micky Adams as manager at the end of May, but knows what it takes to win promotion after the Blades slipped into the third tier for the first time since 1988 and could be the man to instill the club with confidence.
Prediction: 5th Sky Bet odds: 15/2
Gary Megson's Sheffield Wednesday are predicted to return to the Championship
Manager: Gary Megson
Position last season: 15th
Ground: Hillsborough. Capacity: 39,859
Players in: David Prutton (Swindon, free), Rob Jones (Scunthorpe, free), Julian Bennett (Nottingham Forest, free), Jose Semedo (Charlton, free), Danny Batth (Wolves, loan until January)
Players out: Tommy Miller (Huddersfield, free), Paul Heffernan (Kilmarnock, free), Tommy Spurr (Doncaster, £200,000), Gary Teale (St Mirren, free), Michael Morrison (Charlton, undisclosed)
Key man: David Prutton
Chances: Megson has assembled a big, powerful side as he embarks on his first full season in charge at Hillsborough and summer signings Prutton and Semedo add a touch of class in midfield required to challenge for promotion, with a top-two finish certainly within their grasp. It would be no great surprise if they secured the title.
Prediction: 1st Sky Bet odds: 6/1
Manager: Graham Westley
Position last season: 7th in League 2 (promoted via the play-offs)
Ground: Broadhall Way. Capacity: 7,100
Players in: Guy Madjo (unattached), Alan Julian (Gillingham, free), Phil Edwards (Accrington, free), Jennison Myrie-Williams (unattached), Robin Shroot (unattached)
Players out: Ashley Bayes (Basingstoke, free), Luke Foster (Rotherham, free), Yemi Odubade (Gateshead, free), Charlie Griffin (Forest Green, free), David Bridges (Kettering Town, free)
Key man: Darius Charles
Chances: In the third tier for the first time in their history after play-off success in May, it may prove a step too far for Boro. Solid at the back but could struggle to find the back of the net.
Prediction: 16th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Les Parry
Position last season: 17th
Ground: Prenton Park. Capacity: 16, 789
Players in: Owain Fon Williams (Rochdale, free), Danny Holmes (The New Saints, free), Vinicius Dantas (Azuza Pacific, free), Martin Devaney (Barnsley, free)
Players out: Aaron Cresswell (Ipswich, tribunal), Dale Jennings (Bayern Munich, undisclosed), Alan Mahon, Marlon Broomes, Max Blanchard, Joe Collister, Nick Wood, Ryan Fraughan, Sam Morrow, Jack Mackreth (all released).
Key man: Vinicius Dantas
Chances: Tranmere operate with one of the smallest budgets in the division and mere survival would represent success. That could be a bridge too far this season.
Prediction: 21st Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Dean Smith
Position last season: 20th
Ground: The Banks's Stadium. Capacity: 11,300
Players in: Kevan Hurst (Carlisle, free), Claude Gnakpa (Luton, free), Mat Sadler (Watford, free), Adam Chambers (Leyton Orient, free), Ryan Jarvis (Leyton Orient, free), Lee Beevers (Colchester, free), David Grof (unattached), Anton Peterlin (unattached), Jimmy Walker (unattached, Kevan Hurst ( unattached)
Players out: Clayton McDonald (Port Vale, free), Jonny Brain, Aaron Lescott, Steve Jones, Darren Byfield, Paul Marshall, Tom Williams, Alex Hickman, Sean Geddes, Emmanuel Ledesma (all released)
Key man: Andy Butler
Chances: Having narrowly avoided relegation on the final day of last term, manager Dean Smith - in his first full season at the helm - will likely settle for the 10th, 13th and 12th-placed finishes of previous campaigns.
Prediction: 18th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Gary Waddock
Position last season: 3rd in League 2
Ground: Adams Park. Capacity: 10, 000
Players in: Ben Harding (Aldershot, free), Joel Grant (Crewe, free), Scott Donnelly (Swansea, loan), John Halls (Aldershot, free), Elliot Benyon (Swindon, free), James Tunnicliffe (Brighton, free)
Players out: Sam Belcher, Dan Fitchett, Stuart Green, Alan Bennett, Jerome Federico (all released), Lewis Montrose (Gillingham, free), Keiran Murtagh, Chris Westwood (released), Jon-Paul Pittman (Oxford, free)
Key man: Scott Rendell
Chances: Sealed an immediate return to the third tier but Wanderers may continue to yo-yo between League One and League Two and struggle again this season. Survival would be seen as an achievement.
Prediction: 17th Sky Bet odds: 50/1
Manager: Terry Skiverton
Position last season: 14th
Ground: Huish Park. Capacity: 9,665
Players in: Bondz N'Gala (Plymouth, free), Kieran Agard (Everton, free), Anthony Edgar (West Ham, free), Dominic Blizzard (Bristol Rovers, free), Curtis Haynes-Brown (Lowestoft Town, undisclosed), Steve MacLean (unattached), Rory Fallon (unattached), Jedz Steer (Norwich, season loan)
Players out: Dean Bowditch (MK Dons, free), Alex Russell (released), Craig Alcock (Peterborough, free), Nathan Smith (released), Adam Virgo (Bristol Rovers, free), Andrew Tuttle (released), Andy Welsh (Carlisle, free)
Key man: Bondz N'Gala
Chances: A season of struggle could be on the cards for Yeovil as they have lost a lot of quality players over the summer. N'Gala will provide a solid presence, but the former Plymouth man will need help.
Prediction: 24th Sky Bet odds: 66/1