Four clubs,One more place to the Premier League


The 2016-17 EFL Championship season ended with Brighton and Hove Albion and Newcastle United promoted to the Premier League,while the Magpies have been notoriously known as a yo-yo team in recent seasons with bouncing between the Premier League and the EFL Championship while for the Seagulls this is their return to the highest division of English football in 34 years.However the promotion race isn’t over since the playoffs are about to begin this weekend and after long and exhausting 46 matchdays four clubs remain in place for the promotion to the Premier League and three of them are familiar with playing in the Premier League while one might be a debutant in the next season’s Premier League.Going into Western Yorkshire there is located the ultimate underdog of the playoffs which is Huddersfield Town and the last time the Terries were playing in the highest division of English football which was the old First Division was 47 years ago,this season the Terriers have been the surprise team of the EFL Championship where they collected 81 points besides in the last match of the season they were trounced by Cardiff City 3-0 which has placed them at 5th place but for much of the season the Terriers were in the race for automatic promotion.A club which rich history where in the 1920s under the legendary coach Herbert Chapman won three consecutive First Division titles,the Terriers are ready to make history and make a debut to the Premier League.The Terriers will be facing one of the biggest favorites for promotion to the Premier League,the club from Steel City in South Yorkshire which is Sheffield Wednesday.Last season the Owls were so close to get promoted through the playoffs but they lost the playoff final against Hull City,but the goal hasn’t changed to return to the Premier League after 17 long years in the wilderness which were painful for the Owls and which even saw them spending years in the third division-League One.For much of this season Carlos Carvahal’s men were hanging on the edges to clinch a spot in the playoffs,however a run in April gave the Owls which saw them collect 19 out of 24 points got them into 4th position with 81 points the same like their opponent in the playoff semifinals but with a better goal difference.Since this year is the 150th anniversary of the Owls,a return to the Premier League would be the biggest gift for the Owls and their fans in a long time.Going south there are two former participants from the Premier League-Fulham and Reading.For Fulham this has been a season come true when they knocked out Leeds from the playoff race and like the Owls they made an impressive run where they collected 19 out of 24 points.Serbian manager Slaviša Jokanović who won promotion with Watford two years ago has a chance to win a second promotion with the West Londoners which are waiting for a return to the Premier League after three long years and which during their stay in the Premier League established themselves and made an impressive run to the UEFA Europe League final seven years ago where they were beaten by Atletico Madrind in extra-time in the final in Hamburg.However ever since their relegation from the Premier League in 2014 the Cottagers have been in decline and last season only luck saved them from being relegated This might be their season since last season the club barely avoided relegation,but under Jokanovic,Fulham progressed and it is back in the race for promotion.Fulham will face in the playoff semifinals Reading and both clubs have faced each other this season.Prior to their first match Jaap Stam’s men made a run which last for a month (from mid-October to late November) where the Royals have collected 15 out of possible 15 points and then came the trip to Craven Cottage at the beginning of December which resulted in a disaster for the Royals where they were trounced 5-0 by Slaviša Jokanović’s men which included two goals scored by Fulham’s Scottish striker Chris Martin,however in their second meeting just a month later in mid-January the Royals won their match against the Cottagers by a single goal.Nevertheless Jaap Stam’s men finished 3rd with 85 points besides they suffered a 7-1 trouncing against Norwich City at the beginning of April which didn’t spelled them good for the playoffs.With the promotion playoffs beginning this weekend there is one more promotion place for the Premier League to be decided and four clubs competing will we see a return of Fulham or Reading,a surprise underdog promotion of Huddersfield Town or a long awaited return of Sheffield Wednesday that will be known at the end of May at Wembley when the promotion final will be played.


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