Championship Team of the Month for December
WhoScored.com run through their Championship Team of the Month for December...
Last Updated: 03/01/20 12:36pm
We take look back at the top performers from the Championship in December, with 11 clubs represented in WhoScored.com's Team of the Month.
Goalkeeper: Rafael Cabral (Reading) - 7.07
Reading were one of the form teams over the Christmas period, losing just one of their six matches during the month of December. Cabral played a major part in the Royals' timely upturn in form with four clean sheets in six matches. Furthermore, only two goalkeepers made more saves than the 29-year-old in the Championship last month (23).
Right-back: Luke Ayling (Leeds) - 7.45
Leeds endured a rocky month of December but still managed to enter the new year level on points with West Brom at the top of the Championship. Ayling was a consistent performer for Marcelo Bielsa's side at both ends of the pitch. The 28-year-old played a direct hand in three goals in six appearances (one goal, two assists) and ranked third in the division for most tackles made (18).
Centre-back: Tom Lees (Sheffield Wednesday) - 7.55
Sheffield Wednesday didn't end 2019 well but it wasn't for a lack of trying on Lees behalf. The 29-year-old closed off the year with goals in successive matches, including a WhoScored Man-of-the-Match display in their defeat to Stoke. Lees' nose for danger stood him well, as only two players made more headed clearances than the 29-year-old in the Championship last month (23). In fact, Lees (47) won more aerial duels than any other defender in the division.
Centre-back: Joe Worrall (Nottingham Forest) - 7.32
Nottingham Forest will have mixed feelings about their December period but at least ended the year with back-to-back victories to remain in the hunt for a play-off place. Worrall was a huge positive for the club last month, scoring his first league goal of the season and claiming his second assist in his six outings. The 22-year-old also chipped in with 4.6 clearances per game and 5.7 aerial duels won per game.
Left-back: Kristian Pedersen (Birmingham) - 7.30
Birmingham are heading in the wrong direction in the Championship and Pedersen will need help from his team-mates if the Blues are to steer clear of relegation. Pedersen started December with a WhoScored Man-of-the-Match display in their 3-2 win at Reading and closed off the year with an assist in their remarkable 5-4 defeat to Leeds. Pedersen ranked fifth in the division for most tackles and interceptions combined (28).
Right midfield: Andre Ayew (Swansea) - 7.89
Ayew was at his devastating best in December, as the Swansea star collected three WhoScored Man-of-the-Match awards in six outings - the joint-most in the division. Defenders struggled to get near the 30-year-old last month, as he fired in the joint-most goals (five) and won the joint-most fouls (19) in the Championship. Ayew's goal contributions earned Swansea an additional five points to put Steve Cooper's side in the play-off picture.
Central midfield: Matheus Pereira (West Brom) - 7.44
West Brom are fighting tooth and nail with Leeds for top spot in the Championship and highly rated 23-year-old Pereira is integral to their promotion aspirations. Pereira played a direct hand in four goals in December, all coming in their 5-1 demolition of Swansea at the start of the month, including a hat-trick of assists. No player created more goalscoring chances than Pereira (18) in the Championship last month, while the creative midfielder also registered at least three more accurate through balls than any other player (five). Furthermore, only one player won possession in the attacking third more times than Pereira (seven).
Central midfield: Eberechi Eze (QPR) - 7.41
Eze can feel hard done by to have only scored twice in December, as the QPR man hit the target more times than any other player in the Championship last month (11). The talented 21-year-old won the WhoScored Man-of-the-Match award on two occasions in December and reached double figures for both key passes registered (10) and dribbles completed (17).
Left midfield: Niclas Eliasson (Bristol City) - 7.60
Eliasson started December and finished the month with WhoScored Man-of-the-Match displays. The Bristol City winger played a direct hand in four goals in six appearances (one goal, three assists) and completed the most crosses (excluding corners) in the division (13). December was a particularly hard month for the Robins and Eliasson was certainly one of few positives for the club. Eliasson reached 10 assists for the league campaign last month, no player has registered more in the division.
Striker: Lee Tomlin (Cardiff) - 7.43
After a relatively underwhelming start to the season, Tomlin really hit his stride over the Christmas period. The 30-year-old has played a direct hand in 10 goals in the Championship this season and six of those fell in the month of December. No player registered more assists than the Cardiff striker (four) in the division last month and he picked up the WhoScored Man-of-the-Match award in their win over Barnsley and draw with high-flyers Leeds.
Striker: Conor Chaplin (Barnsley) - 7.51
Like Tomlin, Barnsley striker Chaplin has taken his time to reach top gear this season. The 22-year-old more than doubled his tally for the season in December, scoring a league-best five goals. No one played a direct hand in more goals than the Barnsley striker (6) in the Championship last month and his goal involvements helped earn his side an additional six points. Without them, Barnsley would be bottom of the table and nine points from safety.