Predicted! How the Championship table will finish in 2017/18

Calling football is an ugly, humiliating business. So let's crack on! Mike Holden weighs up the evidence and tells us how the Championship will finish up 

Everyone's got an opinion – heck, the table you'll see below is different to the one in our hulking magazine Season Preview (it's out now, don't you know?). But each pick is justified, and while we're very sure you won't agree with us, we'd love to know your thoughts once you've read it through. Get us at @FourFourTwo on Twitter with #PredictTheTable.   

24. Barnsley

The Tykes have lost six of their best players in 2017 and that’s a lot to come back from no matter how imaginative your transfer business. Most of the new arrivals have little experience of this level and they will be expected to take up commanding roles. Paul Heckingbottom is a capable manager but this is looking like a hiding to nothing.

23. Ipswich

Things have gone stale at Portman Road and one modestly promising transfer window might not be enough to undo the damage of dealing in half measures for the past three years. You’d expect the Tractor Boys to scrap their way to survival under Mick McCarthy, but another relegation battle would probably see him depart before then.

22. Burton

Survival was a wonderful achievement for the Brewers last season, but reaching 50 points will always be a monumental task at this level. They will be competitive and their fate could be in the balance for the entire 10 months. However, they might need a bit more creativity this time around and Nigel Clough’s managerial style doesn’t really encourage that.

21. Bolton

The Whites are going to be severely hampered by tough new measures on teams operating under a transfer embargo, yet you get the impression that Phil Parkinson is relishing the challenge ahead of him. He has the tactical nous to reduce games to fine margins and grind out points where others wouldn't. In the final reckoning, that might just be enough.

20. QPR

Ian Holloway insists he has settled on a set formation and style of play after heavy criticism over his tinkering, but it will be interesting to see how long he remains true to his word if the early results aren’t favourable. A tough season awaits either way: the defence is ropey and there’s a distinct lack of individual match-winners.

19. Millwall

The Lions have a strong identity under Neil Harris and will relish being underdogs in almost every game. A shorter summer isn’t necessarily a problem considering the core of the team has remained intact for the past two seasons. They’ve done some good business given their resources, and the quick turnarounds and heavy schedule might suit them.

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