For the majority of the season it has been Newcastle and Brighton setting the pace, with Huddersfield leading the charge to break the top 2, closely followed by Leeds and Reading, who’ve never been far behind after enjoying superb seasons as a constant fixture in the league’s top 6.
Here’s the breakdown of last night’s results in the Championship & what they mean for Newcastle ahead of tonight’s clash with Burton at St. James’ Park:
As expected, Brighton saw off a struggling Birmingham City 3-1 at the Amex last night, seeing them leapfrog Newcastle United to return to the top of the Championship, for now at least. With the visit of Burton Albion acting as Newcastle’s game in hand tonight, Rafa’s men know a win would take them back to the summit.
Leeds United also played last night – a team who looked to be a potential threat to the top 2 after an impressive 2-0 win over Brighton last month. Since that win, however, they have lost successive away games, losing to Reading over the weekend followed by a 2-0 defeat at Brentford last night. This is good news for the Magpies, giving them one less contender to worry about, with their dip in away form a timely one given their next trip is to St. James’ next week.
Reading continue to find results, enjoying two wins in four days at the Madejski, with the latest being a 3-1 win over Blackburn last night. This has seen Jaap Stam’s men move into 3rd place, 8 points behind the Magpies in 2nd and 2 points ahead of Huddersfield in 4th with the Terriers having two games in hand over the Royals however.
Huddersfield, who remain Newcastle’s biggest threat to promotion, endured a shock home defeat to Burton on Saturday, making Newcastle’s win over Wigan all the more precious and a huge boost for our promotion hopes. David Wagner’s men will be looking to bounce back tonight, but with signs that they are starting to feel the pressure, a visit of from the capable Norwich City could pose another banana skin at the John Smith’s stadium this evening.
Above all else, let’s hope Newcastle United get the job done tonight against a battling Burton side. Win & we shall not only return to the top of the table, but maintain a minimum of a 10 point gap over our promotion rivals, moving another game closer to a top flight return.
Howay the lads!