Who will be relegated from the Championship?

Last season the battle at the bottom of the Championship involved a lot of teams and went right down to the wire.

The teams that did go stay up will take confidence in that and will want to push on this season and not be involved at the wrong end of the table again.

The clear favourites to go down are Yeovil Town and unfortunately for them it will be a very tough ask simply because they were not expected to get promoted to the Championship in the first place so they do not really have the team in place to compete. I do like Gary Johnson though as a manager and his teams always seem to be very committed and want to win for him. They will be underdogs in every game so they have nothing to lose and that could work in their advantage.

Doncaster Rovers also gained promotion last season and this time I think they will go straight back down because I do not think they made the greatest of managerial choices in Paul Dickov but maybe he will prove me wrong. They have brought in Ross Turnbull in goal and this is a risky choice because he hasn’t played first team football for a very long time and even though he is getting older he does not have a lot of experience. I do though like the signings of Dean Furman and Harry Forrester and hope they do well in the Championship.

Barnsley finished last season superbly but it could be another year of struggle. David Flitcroft has had an exceptional start to his managerial career but it will be a real test for him when the going gets tough and his team get on a losing run. The signings he has made have been ok and will add something to the side and getting Chris O’Grady back is vital to the way they play. Also Dale Jennings will be looking to restart his career after an unsuccessful spell at Bayern Munich but hopefully he has taken some positives from that experience and will be brilliant in the Championship.

Paul Ince may have been able to keep his son Tom at Blackpool for the time being but that might not be enough for them to stay away from the relegation battle. Ince has not been a great manager over recent years and it will be a difficult job at Blackpool but he did end last season with very few defeats and if he can turn a few of the draws into victories then they will have nothing to worry about. They have brought in three decent strikers in Bobby Grant, Michael Chopra and Steve Davies so they at least have competition in the striking department and goals may not be a problem.

Burnley have lost their best player and most consistent goal scorer in Charlie Austin so it is no surprise at all that they are seen as one of the weaker teams in the division. They will need other players to step up or it will be a very long year for Sean Dyche if he gets to keep his job for that long. The only striker they have brought in so far is Ryan Noble from Sunderland and that cannot be convincing the fans that they are going to be successful.

Who will be Bury’s next manager?

Bury are still without a manager after Richie Barker left them just days before the season started for Crawley Town and interviews are expected to take place this week.

The club are currently 23rd in League One with only two points from their opening five games and caretaker boss Peter Shirtliff is not expected to be the man to take the club forward and this is largely down to the start they have made. However, it is worth pointing out that he was put in a very difficult situation and he not being able to succeed is not really a surprise.

But, he may still be considered by the board so it is not a drastic change at the club over the next few months at least. They will want to stay in League One though so they will have to make a decision soon if they do not believe Shirtliff can keep them up, so who are the contenders? Current Wrexham player manager Andy Morrell seems to be the favourite at the moment and it is not surprise to see why as he has been performing brilliantly at Wrexham and has won 33 of his 53 games in charge, and only losing nine of them. The fact that he had two years at Bury will also work in his favour because he will know the area and be able to settle down easily and get on with his job as quickly as possible. He scored 18 times for Bury in his 79 appearances.

Another former Bury player to be linked with the job is David Flitcroft. Flitcroft, is currently assistant manager at Barnsley so it may be difficult to get him, especially if there is a compensation package to be agreed, but if they can get him then it could be very risky as he has never managed before and has always been a number two. He will have learned a lot from Keith Hill as he has been with him at both Barnsley and Rochdale so if he can replicate his success in the lower leagues then he will be a decent manager.

Surprisingly in my opinion, Chris Brass has been linked with the job and it is a slight surprise because he has actually had the job once before on a caretaker basis and managed to lose three out of his four games in charge and not even pick up a single win. Brass hasn’t managed since then but like the rest of the candidates he did play for the club and has been their assistant manager under Alan Knill. He is currently still with Knill at Scunthorpe United so yet again a worry over money could be a problem.

It seems like the board want someone that knows what the club is about and that can sometimes be a good thing as they will really understand what the fans want and I am sure right now all the fans want is safety in League One.