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Leicester City 10/11 Opponents – Preview 1

This is my first 2010/2011 Npower Championship season preview. In feature number one I will be previewing Barnsley, Bristol City, Burnley and Cardiff…

Barnsley – The 2010/2011 Npower Championship campaign will be Mark Robins first full season in charge of Barnsley, after taking over at the Yorkshire club in September last year. Robins made steady progress last season; however this campaign could well be a different story. Barnsley have lost top class striker Daniel Bogdanovic to Sheffield United, also the defence still lacks depth as the “Tykes” only have six defenders to choose from. The midfield looks strong though as Robins has strengthened that position dramatically over the past month, Jim O’Brien and Goran Lovre enter the Oakwell fold, aswell as Hugo Colace who decided to opt upon a new deal at the end of last month. The striker shortage could well be a huge worry with Bogdanovic and Macken heading out of the Yorkshire side, meaning that loan journeyman Liam Dickinson and former Leicester striker Iain Hume will be depended on the most. Overall Mark Robins is a bright young manager; however with the lack of defenders and the lack of precision and class up front Barnsley could well find it tough this season. Prediction – 21st


Bristol City – With Steve Coppell in charge this season and with a very impressive squad to pick from, Bristol City could well repeat their play-off fate of the 07/08 season. The big talk of the summer will be the signing of England International David James; the 40 year old goalkeeper surprisingly joined the “Robins” on the 30th of July. Also Coppell has managed to keep hold of last season’s top goalscorer Nicky Maynard; the 23 year old will be expected to make another huge impact. Meanwhile Bradley Orr and Jamie McCombe have both departed from Ashton gate, however the club has managed to replace those losses by signing Nicky Hunt and Damion Stewart. Overall Bristol City could well be there or thereabouts at the end of the 10/11 campaign, a play-off place is a likely aspect; however it’s crucial that Coppell holds onto top class striker Nicky Maynard. Prediction – 6th

City 1-0 Crystal Palace

 Burnley – Even though Burnley look well equipped for the start of the Npower Championship season, there is still doubts over the manager Brian Laws. Laws has yet to prove himself to the Burnley faithful, however with the signings he has made over the summer a successful season could well be in store. The “Clarets” look a very strong outfit with new signings Chris Iwelumo, Ross Wallace and Lee Grant adding quality to the Burnley ranks. The big question is whether Brian Laws can keep hold of his top players before the transfer window closes, the likes of Chris Eagles, Tyrone Mears and Brian Jensen have all been linked with a move away from the club, as they could be joining Steven Fletcher and Robbie Blake in the league above. Even if those players leave, Burnley could still be left with the likes of Martin Paterson and Graham Alexander, two players who have proven history in the Championship. Overall Burnley will be one of the favourites for promotion, but manager Brian Laws could well be the important factor to the former Premiership side’s season. Prediction – 5th

Cardiff City – Last season’s play-off finalists Cardiff are all set for a traumatised campaign, as off the field occurrences could well affect the club in the next coming months. With financial backing on transfers going at a slow rate, and an outburst from key striker Michael Chopra the “Bluebirds” could well be looking at a mediocre season on the pitch. If Cardiff is to stand a chance in this season’s Npower Championship it will be down to the manager Dave Jones, Cardiff have stuck with the former Southampton boss through thick and thin as he was able to deliver the goods last season. The squad is very thin on numbers, however if the likes of Whittingham, Chopra, Bothroyd and Burke all start firing Dave Jones’s side could well be heading for a top ten finish. Overall Cardiff City will struggle to re discover the form that took them to the play-off final last season, however if Dave Jones sticks by his team and the strikers start scoring goals on a regular basis things may not look so shabby after all. Prediction – 10th

Opinions Wanted Please

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  1. ric

    3 August, 2010 at 12:40

    Why will Cardiff finish 10th with same team who finished 4th last season? We only lost Ledley and he was injured through 70% of last year anyway.

    The league is weaker this year than last, we should finis top 6 at least.

  2. gavh

    3 August, 2010 at 12:52

    There is mixed thoughts on your supported side Cardiff, from my point of view it will be unlikely that Peter Whittingham will match his goalscoring form from last season. Chopra could yet still leave your club, but I doubt that will happen, Whittingham scored a great amount of goals last season, if he doesn’t do that again you could well expect a lesser impressive campaign than the last one. Dave Jones is the key to Cardiff’s success he worked well on a very tight budget, and has stuck with your club through troubling times.

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