We are already halfway through the Championship season, and things are getting intense for the Welsh teams in the league standings.
Swansea City and Cardiff City are the top teams from Wales and they have a good chance of coming back on the Premiership stage at the end of this season.
But out of all the league’s teams, Norwich City have the best chances of returning to Premiership, with the best odds when it comes to betting on Championship matches. The Canaries did win the Championship two seasons ago, before finishing at the bottom of the table in the last Premiership season.
Now, their odds of making it back to the top tier are 4/9, while Brentford and Bournemouth have the second best odds, 3/5.
But what about the Welsh teams?
Here is how they stand right now:
Swansea City climbed to the second spot in the standings in the past rounds. They are four points behind the leader Norwich, and this means having the fourth promotion odds – 2/1.
The team has the second best form in the league at this moment, with three wins and a draw in the past four matches – only Brentford has a better form (four wins and a draw).
Steve Cooper’s side recorded a win and a draw in the past two rounds against Watford and Reading, which are also in the promotion fight this season.
The team has benefited a lot from Andre Ayew and Jamal Lowe’s scoring form – they have eight goals each. Also, keeper Freddie Woodman (on loan from Newcastle United) has a record of 13 clean sheets this season – by far the most clean sheets and the best defence (13 goals conceded in 23 rounds).
Swansea have less than 10 seasons in the top flight, but achieved a sixth place in 1982 and eight place in 2015. And now they have a very good chance of promoting again, relying on a solid team, with some excellent players.
Last season, the team dramatically clinched the last play-offs spot, tied with Nottingham Forest, but was defeated in the semifinals by Brentford.
Same did Cardiff City last season, finishing just three points above Swansea, after winning the last three games of the season. Nevertheless, they lost the semifinals to the eventual play-offs winners, Fulham.
At this moment, the team is 15th in the league table, after losing the last three games in a row. They have the worst form out of all the teams and are eight points away from the last play-offs spot.
Cardiff lost to the leaders Norwich, to fourth place Brentford, and also to last place Wycombe, so all defeats were very hard to swallow. Before this, they had a four-games winning streak, and this may explain why they are still 11thwhen it comes to promotion odds – 16/1.
The team played twice in Premier League, last time two years ago when they relegated after six games lost in the last eight of the seasons, finishing only two points under the relegation line.
Neil Harris can count on Kieffer Moore, who scored eight goals this season, and also on Harry Wilson and Sheyi Ojo, both on loan from Liverpool, having five assists and three goals each this season.
But while it is almost impossible to believe that the two Welsh teams would finish in top 2, the only way to see both of them through the next Premier League season is that Cardiff would somehow manage to reach the play-offs and then win it.
The two teams met in the Premier League only twice, in 2013-2014. They each won a game, but at the end of that season Cardiff eventually relegated.
Swansea and Cardiff will meet on March 20th, at the Liberty stadium, in the South Wales derby. The previous meeting, in Cardiff City Stadium, was won by the Swans, 2-0.