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Championship preview: Tigers on the prowl

Jonathan Campkin
hull city 300x225 Championship preview: Tigers on the prowl

Steve Bruce manager of Hull City

The expectation level has risen at Hull City, who have an experienced manager and some exciting players. Fans now believe that this is the year the Tigers can return to the promised land. On the other hand, Sheffield Wednesday are fighting for their lives at the other end of the table. Therefore this will be an important match for both.
We look ahead to the this match, the other standout games and the players to watch this week in the Championship……

MATCH OF THE WEEK
Hull City v Sheffield – Wednesday
Hull are in great form having taken 17 points from their last seven games, a period in which they have not lost despite tricky fixtures against fellow promotion contenders Leicester and Leeds United.
They are currently seven points behind league leaders Cardiff, but only two points ahead of Crystal Palace and Middlesbrough.
They will be looking to extend that gap with fixtures against struggling Sheffield Wednesday and Peterborough.
Meanwhile, Sheffield Wednesday currently sit in twenty-second. The Owls did go on a three match winning streak in December but lost their last game against Burnley which meant they are now behind Peterborough on goal difference.

OTHER NOTABLE MATCHES
Bristol City v Leicester- Bristol City look in real trouble with consistently poor performances. This is match which could determine whether Derek McInnes is still in charge come Monday and with Leicester in great form following their demolition of Huddersfield, a heavy defeat will surely mark the end of his tenure at Ashton Gate.
Charlton v Blackpool- Both sit in mid-table but have a habit of scoring and conceding plenty of goals. There were seven goals in Charlton’s last league match away at Watford.

ONE TO WATCH
Huddersfield Town
They currently lie in seventeenth, seven points above the relegation zone and eight points away from the play-offs.
They were hammered by Leicester in their last league match 6-1, a performance full of defensive mistakes.

They face Birmingham before facing tough matches against Watford, Derby, Cardiff and Burnley. These next five fixtures will prove tough which means the Terriers may find themselves in a spot of bother by mid-February.

PLAYER TO WATCH
Lucas Jutkiewicz
Middlesbrough currently sit in fourth position just two points behind Hull thanks in part to the threat Lucas Jutkiewicz poses.
The frontman has scored eight goals in 18 appearances in the league this season. However he offers much more than goals, given he is strong and powerful and brings his team mates into play.
Jutkiewicz’s good work-rate and finishing instinct has meant he is one of the most feared strikers in the league.

Boro face Watford at home before an away trip to Leicester. Jutkiewicz will be looking to push Middlesbrough into the automatic promotion places.

FIXTURES
Friday 11 January 2013
Wolves v Blackburn 7.45pm
Saturday 12 January 2013
Barnsley v Leeds United 3pm
Bolton v Millwall 3pm
Brighton v Derby 3pm
Bristol City v Leicester 3pm
Burnley v Crystal Palace 3pm
Cardiff v Ipswich 3pm
Charlton v Blackpool 3pm
Huddersfield v Birmingham 3pm
Middlesbrough v Watford 3pm
Nottingham Forest v Peterborough 3pm
Hull v Sheffield Wednesday 5.20pm

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