Championship fans rate their club's season so far

Fans from all 24 Sky Bet Championship clubs rate their season so far, tell us how their manager is faring, who their best player has been, their hopes for the rest of the campaign and where they hope to finish.

2021/22

Barnsley

Carlo van de Watering, Reds Report

How is your season going? 3/10. An underwhelming and disappointing start for Barnsley FC. Five losses, five draws and just one win. The Tykes look like a team devoid of energy and confidence.

How is the manager doing? The team look like a poor shadow of last season with no sign of improving and a lack of unity and game plan. Markus Schopp urgently needs some results to keep his job and win back the fans.

Best player so far? No doubt goalkeeper Brad Collins has saved us multiple times this season. A shining light in a poorly performing team.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Barnsley urgently need to get back at what they do best - high-intensity, high-press football. The change of plan needs to happen sooner rather than later for us to avoid relegation.

Predicted finish? 18th.

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Birmingham City

Troy Deeney made his Birmingham debut in the Blues' 2-0 win over Derby

Bik Singh, Blues 4 All

How is your season going? 5/10. Optimism after a few great results has now faded with our run of heavy losses. The reduced stadium capacity at St Andrew's will continue to play a factor in our poor form.

How is the manager doing? Lee Bowyer made a great start but is struggling now with this crop of players. He knows what is needed and I think he will secretly be planning to overhaul the squad for next season.

Best player so far? Ivan Sunjic our record signing has been the most improved performer under Bowyer's reign. We don't have the same intensity when he doesn't start for us. What an engine.

Hopes for the rest of the season? St Andrew's needs to fully re-open asap otherwise our home form will continue to suffer without the atmosphere of a full stadium. There will be some great away days to enjoy too.

Predicted finish? 11th.

Blackburn Rovers

Mikey Delap, Blackburn Rovers Fan Community Podcast

How is your season going? 7/10. A much better start than expected given limited financial investment and growing impatience with the club managerial structure. The games have been entertaining too.

How is the manager doing? Tony Mowbray is doing okay at the moment. I think most Rovers fans have accepted he's hit his ceiling and limitations, but he's made a decent start with a small squad.

Best player so far? If it is a contest, it's not even a close one. Chile's Ben Brereton-Diaz. Full of life, renewed purpose and most importantly… goals.

Hopes for the rest of the season? That the team's most vital players (Diaz, Daniel Ayala, Darragh Lenihan and Lewis Travis) stay clear of injury. There's not much in the way of quality reinforcements in the wings and ant of them being out could lead to a sharp downturn in fortunes.

Predicted finish? 14th.

Blackpool

Tom Johnson, UTMP

How is your season going? 9/10. Initially we looked out of our depth, but since we finalised our squad and got used to playing in this league, we've more than held our own.

How is the manager doing? Neil Critchley is doing very well. He makes use of every player in the squad and has everyone ready to step in for injuries or lack of form. That allows for consistent performances throughout the season.

Best player so far? Shayne Lavery is the most natural goal scorer I've seen in years. Capable with both feet and relentless energy means he not only creates his own chances but also finishes them off.

Hopes for the rest of the season? To avoid a relegation battle and finish above Preston. Anything else would be a bonus for our first season back at this level.

Predicted finish? 16th.

Bournemouth

Steven Jenkins, The South End Blog

How is your season going? 8.5/10. We're top of the league. We are scoring goals. We are conceding few. And we are not even playing at our best yet. What more could we want?

How is the manager doing? Scott Parker likes to play Parkerball. He's got the team pressing from the front making the opposition make mistakes but he wants more and knows he can get more.

Best player so far? Too many good and consistent performances to name one. Gary Cahill has added assurance at the back. Philip Billing is a force going forward and Ryan Christie is starting to shine.

Hopes for the rest of the season? When you're top of the league you want to stay there. We have the players. We have the squad. And we have the manager to make it happen. Automatic promotion.

Predicted finish? 2nd.

Bristol City

Paul Binning, The Exiled Robin

How is your season going? 7/10. Avoiding a relegation battle was the aim for many so 9th is a decent start. We are awesome away but still can't win at home. Yet.

How is the manager doing? Nigel Pearson has got the team to play with more fight, structure and effort than we saw for much of last season. He appears to be building back something slowly.

Best player so far? A toss-up between Dan Bentley in goal - he's won us points already - and the massive-haired Han-Noah Massengo, who has come of age.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Despite being 9th, I think a promotion push is probably beyond our strike force. Steady midtable will do nicely.

Predicted finish? 12th.

Cardiff City

Tom Phillips, View From the Ninian

How is your season going? 3/10.We started well with some good results, but it papered over cracks. We've been found out recently and it's no surprise we've lost five on the spin. It's not been good enough.

How is the manager doing? It couldn't be much worse for Mick McCarthy. He's lost pretty much the whole fanbase. Strange team selections, boring football and no rapport with fans. He could be gone in weeks.

Best player so far? Ryan Giles. Despite being a young loan signing, he seems to be our only creative spark. He's a brilliant crosser of the ball and his service to Moore and Collins will be key.

Hopes for the rest of the season? The Championship is so tight we could still make the play-offs, but a lot has to change first. If we carry on with our current form, we'll be closer to the bottom than the top.

Predicted finish? 13th.

Coventry City

David Moore, Sky Blues Extra Podcast

How is your season going? 9/10. We have had the unlikeliest of starts and the supporters are in dreamland, but it's very much deserved when you look at the statistics from the majority of fixtures.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Many were worried about our summer business but Mark Robins has got his signings, tactics and man-management spot on so far and he continues to grow his legendary club status.

Best player so far? Viktor Gyokeres. His high energy performances have earned him an unexpected nine league goals already, as well as call-up to the national team to replace none other than Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Survival was originally the plan but with such an incredible start, even the most pessimistic city fans would be looking at mid-table, while some, including me are relishing the possibility of the play-offs.

Predicted finish? 11th.

Derby County

Chris Parsons, Steve Bloomer's Washing podcast

How is your season going? 7/10. Better than expected, but we're still probably doomed. Surprisingly resilient defensively, but still very goal-shy. Embargoes and injuries making it a real uphill struggle.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Wayne Rooney has provided composure and cohesion during a chaotic period. He's made us competitive despite injuries, embargoes and the trauma of a points deduction. He has our respect again.

Best player so far? Phil Jagielka. Shows his class every week and his partnership with Curtis Davies (combined age - 75) has steadied the ship defensively. Will be key if we keep him beyond January.

Hopes for the rest of the season? With no more deductions and a successful appeal, survival is possible. That's unlikely though, so new, prudent owners, keeping our core of youngsters and a clean slate in League One it is then.

Predicted finish? 23rd.

Fulham

Sammy James, Fulhamish Podcast

How is your season going? 6/10. A brilliant start followed by a stuttering September. On our day, we can beat any team in the division, but there feels like a mental fragility to the squad. The fact we are yet to claim a single point after going behind is a clear example of that.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Marco Silva has certainly done well to knock the fans out of the sideways passing coma that we'd been induced into under Scott Parker. At times the football has been scintillating, but any further drift away from the top two will spell dissent quickly.

Best player so far? Fabio Carvalho was immense in August but since he has been injured, our form has nosedived. Considering he's made fewer than 10 senior appearances, our dependency on him is astonishing. The world is very much at his feet.

Hopes for the rest of the season? That we can mark September down as a blip and get a run of wins together that instils us as a runaway top two club. The quality in the squad is there, but we cannot be complacent in this division.

Predicted finish? 2nd

Huddersfield Town

Richard Kosmala, And He Takes That Chance Podcast

How is your season going? 8/10. Our season has been wildly beyond most Town fans' dreams so far with 17 points already on the board and even better being back in the stadiums seeing it all.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Carlos Corberan has really turned things around when most would have happily said adios to him at the end of last season. He has made us more solid and dangerous on the counter.

Best player so far? Sorba Thomas has been a revelation - culminating in his recent debut for Wales. From non-league to Championship Player of the Month and now an international. What a story. Fast and direct. Living his dream.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Most Town fans would settle for not being worried come March like we normally are and just keep enjoying our football after some miserable seasons in recent years.

Predicted finish? 13th.

Hull City

Rich Mathers, Hull City Supporters Trust

How is your season going? 4/10.Frustrating. A great start at Preston followed by lots of effort and possession in matches but no cutting edge. Hopefully the win over Boro gets us going again.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? A League One-winning squad bolstered by loans and free signings meant Grant McCann was dealt a tough hand. Needs a 'Plan B' and to be more flexible with his starting formation.

Best player so far? Hard to pinpoint one. Lewie Coyle, Callum Elder, Keane Lewis-Potter, Greg Docherty and Matt Ingram all look comfortable in the Championship but Coyle wins it for me. A few more need to really believe they can play at this level.

Hopes for the rest of the season? New owners come in, give the club a lift and re-engage with the fans. George Honeyman and Tom Huddlestone get fit. We start turning effort and possession into more goals and wins.

Predicted finish? 19th.

Luton Town

Ian Robertson, We Are Luton Town

How is your season going? 7/10. Such a frustrating start to the season, Luton have had so many injuries we've had to be reactionary rather than developing a new squad. But we've reacted to the situation well. I've been impressed with our ability to find a way to carve out consistent performances.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? It's been a real test for Nathan Jones. He's had to use every ounce of his playing staff and find his way out in certain games. It's always a tough season when you're transitioning with a significant number of new players and adapting that into a new tactical focus.

Best player so far? Luke Berry has come back into the team amid our injury crisis and shown he deserves to be part of the squad when doubt has been cast upon him.

Hopes for the rest of the season? The top half of the table is where I'd expect us to be. Expect the new squad to gel and start to cement ourselves as one of the top teams in the division.

Predicted finish? 8th.

Middlesbrough

John Donovan, Twe12th Man Boro Fan Group

How is your season going? 5/10. It's been a poor start to our season despite a good transfer window. 12 points from eleven games is not good enough with the players we have. Far too inconsistent and like last season, we're still making mistakes and handing goals to the opposition.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Neil Warnock is struggling to string a decent run of performances together. Very good against in-form Sheffield United followed by a poor defeat to Hull. Already murmurings of fans discontent.

Best player so far? Dael Fry has been putting in solid performances throughout the season and is my choice as best player so far.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Hopefully we can get the best out of our new signings, achieve some consistency and climb the table.

Predicted finish? 6th.

Millwall

Nick Hart, Achtung! Millwall Podcast

How is your season going? 6/10. There's a Millwall internet meme doing the rounds depicting manager Gary Rowett as the shark from the classic movie poster for 'Jaws', only with 'Draws' as the title. Which says it all really.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Rowett has been cursed with bad luck, injuries and more bad luck for seemingly forever now, forcing what many feel is a rather negative style on the Lions. Bringing The Den crowd into games will be key for Rowett, as an increasingly fully fit squad look for the home wins.

Best player so far? Jed Wallace. Our main creative outlet and top scorer up to the international break. But if it's surprises you're after, tucked in just behind Jed is Murray Wallace. No relation and less well known, but a fantastic season so far for a very 'Millwall' kind of player.

Hopes for the rest of the season? If we can stay reasonably healthy as a squad and can turn our 'difficult to beat' reputation into wins, there's no reason why Lions fans can't start to dream a little.

Predicted finish? 6th.

Nottingham Forest

Holly Royall, Forever Forest Podcast

How is your season going? 5/10. Forest have had a dire start, even out-doing the previous year's calamitous beginnings by breaking the club record of our worst start for 108 years. We were lacking any kind of cohesion under Chris Hughton. A change has brought some much-needed points and positivity.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Steve Cooper's appointment has been somewhat revolutionary, instilling drive and attractive attacking threat into the team and building vital engagement with the fans. An impressive seven points in his first three games.

Best player so far? Philip Zinckernagel has been one of those characters who has quietly and consistently delivered, even in the worst of times. He is the creative, dependable link we've been missing in midfield with assists aplenty.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Continuing to ride the crest of this new wave under Cooper. With the quality and collective belief across the squad, there is no reason we can't push for a play-off spot or thereabouts.

Predicted finish? 8th.

Peterborough United

Jarred Farmer, The Yellow Block Podcast

How is your season going? 5/10. Eight points from 11 games isn't great. All of our points have come at home. We need to address our away form and fast.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Darren Ferguson is holding his own. He's changed plans a couple of times due to injuries suffered. He will earn his money in the coming months.

Best player so far? Nathan Thompson. It's his first season at this level and he has been absolutely outstanding in each game. A defensive rock and a threat going forward. A leader on and off the pitch.

Hopes for the rest of the season? I hope key players such as Jonson Clarke-Harris, Josh Knight and Jack Taylor all step up to the challenge. I hope we show this league what Peterborough United are capable of.

Predicted finish? 19th.

Preston North End

Bill Whisker, Profound Valley

How is your season going? 5/10. Seems harsh considering we went nine games unbeaten. But losing the first three matches and having too many draws leaves us at the wrong end of the table.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Frankie McAvoy is a likeable fella. The ex-Royal Mail employee has delivered a well-drilled outfit without producing the full package of consistent league wins yet. He's North End's first head coach rather than manager so the credit/blame must be shared with others but I guess that's part and parcel of modern football.

Best player so far? Emil Riis. The great Dane has bags of potential. This season he's added consistency and goals. John Lennon said it - Give Riis a chance.

Hopes for the rest of the season? I do feel we are a good side and a climb up the table is possible. The top half has got to be the aim but with one or two quality additions in January, who knows. Perception creates reality so I'll say we'll sneak into the play-offs on the last day and win the League Cup.

Predicted finish? 6th.

Queens Park Rangers

Charlie Wise, Talking Rangers

How is your season going? 8/10. The exceptional attacking performances haven't quite been matched defensively, but that's brought nothing but excitement to west London. Kicking off the first matches six unbeaten and going toe-to-toe with the top sides has generated plenty of optimism.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Mark Warburton has encouraged our exciting attacking talent to go out there and express themselves and it's reaped the rewards. He's installed self-belief where the squad now genuinely believe the R's can go all the way this season.

Best player so far? Rob Dickie. A Rolls-Royce of a centre-back. A combative defender that reads the game remarkably well, but scores 40-yard screamers whenever he fancies a trip past the half-way line.

Hopes for the rest of the season? If QPR don't finish in the top six this season it will be a real disappointment. The R's will always score goals, but if they tighten things up defensively nothing is off the cards.

Predicted finish? 5th.

Reading

Becka White, TheTilehurstEnd

How is your season going? 6/10. After a slow start and a staggering amount of long-term injuries to first team regulars, we have managed to get back on track and grind out some really important results in recent games.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Veljko Paunovic had gained some critics at the start of the season, with questionable substitutions and the team's inability to see a game out, but he has certainly won some of the fans back by getting the best out of an injury-stricken squad.

Best player so far? John Swift is the obvious one with seven league goals and five assists, but I think Josh Laurent has been absolutely key to our recent run of form and has played a vital role in a predominantly make-shift central defence.

Hopes for the rest of the season? We need to build up a decent points total so an inevitable points deduction doesn't hit us too hard. I think realistically, we're aiming for a solid mid-table finish.

Predicted finish? 12th.

Sheffield United

Ian Rands, Four Blades in the Pub

How is your season going? 6/10. Blades have shown glimpses of how Slavisa Jokanovic wants to play, but the manager hasn't really been given the chance to bring in the players he needs to consistently deliver results.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Jokanovic inherited a squad devoid of confidence, that was a combination of players on the wane after several seasons of over-performance and others who haven't justified significant transfer fees. He's done okay considering.

Best player so far? Morgan Gibbs-White. If he has a poor game, the team does. Energetic, lively, always looking for the ball to create. Hopefully, Wolves don't ask for him back in January.

Hopes for the rest of the season? The team kick on post international break as other promoted Jokanovic sides have in the past and achieve play-offs. The players have the capability. Do they have the mindset?

Predicted finish? 5th.

Stoke City

Ben Rowley, The YYY-Files

How is your season going? 9/10. Stoke's impressive start has been backed up by their performances. We're often dominant in games and our only frustration is that Stoke could do with being more clinical.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Michael O'Neill is still yet to convince me he can turn Stoke around when they're trailing, but that's very much the final flourish to his masterpiece that has been his holistic turnaround of the club.

Best player so far? Harry Souttar has been imperious. He stops the majority of threats before they occur and is more than capable of creating a few at the other end. One of the league's best.

Hopes for the rest of the season? We maintain this momentum, continue to gel as we welcome injured players back and have fun whilst making an assault on the play-offs.

Predicted finish? 5th.

Swansea City

Tom Morgan, Total Swans TV

How is your season going? 7.5/10. The season has started pretty slowly. We've hung around the bottom six since the start but the process and style of play is new to this young group of players and will take time to perfect.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Russell Martin has come in and completely transformed the way we play. He stated at the start of his reign that it wouldn't happen overnight impact and we needed to trust the process. I think majority of fans are with him on that.

Best player so far? Ethan Laird the Manchester United loanee has come in and made a huge impact to our style of play down the right wing. Losing Connor Roberts was huge and we thought we would struggle to replace him. But Ethan has come in and taken his chance.

Hopes for the rest of the season? Maintain the football style and get a good run of wins together to get us higher up the table. Possession doesn't always breed victories but I really think we could be a force to be reckoned with this season.

Predicted finish? 8th.​​​​​​​

West Bromwich Albion

Karlan Grant celebrates scoring West Brom's second goal vs QPR

Josh Bland, The Boing Cast

How is your season going? 8/10. Pulsating, breathless, often unplayable. Albion have adjusted well to the new relentless high-pressing style, and with a little more consistency, look good for a promotion push.

​​​​​​​How is the manager doing? Despite some unfounded criticism over footballing aesthetics, Valerien Ismael has done very well. He has galvanised a jaded squad into one of the most energetic I've seen at The Hawthorns.

Best player so far? With a nod to Alex Mowatt, probably Darnell Furlong. He's not only defensively solid but provides vital width going forward and can cause carnage with that long throw.

Hopes for the rest of the season? A barnstorming, breathless promotion push. A little more tactical flexibility can hopefully see us unpick teams to negate our pressing more consistently.

Predicted finish? 2nd.

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