Matches to look out for in the EFL this weekend
There are plenty of exciting games taking place in the Football League this weekend and here is a selection of the more eye-catching fixtures.
Perhaps the standout contest in the Championship this weekend will take place at the Liberty Stadium when top-of-the-table Swansea host rock-bottom Stoke.
The Swans have proven something of a surprise package under Steve Cooper so far this season, losing just one of their opening 10 league games, with the blend of international stars and young academy products proving as intriguing as it is effective.
Stoke, on the other hand, have picked up just two points all season and it seems almost a miracle that Nathan Jones has not been sacked – something he virtually admitted himself after the midweek defeat to Huddersfield.
Surely another defeat on Saturday, even against a high-flying Swansea team, will be the final nail in the coffin for the former Luton boss at the bet365 Stadium.
Fulham against Charlton is another match that catches the eye, with the Cottagers proving, on their day, they are capable of handing out a thrashing to anyone in the division, while Millwall’s home clash with Leeds is also a match that usually causes a stir.
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The biggest match in League One this weekend will see table-toppers Ipswich head to Highbury to take on fourth-placed Fleetwood.
Ipswich have perhaps not received the plaudits they deserve so far this term, but they are unbeaten in the league and already sit four points clear in the automatic promotion positions.
Paul Lambert seems to be getting a tune out of the Tractor Boys, but Fleetwood are also flying under Joey Barton, taking 10 points from a possible 12 to force their way into the early promotion mix.
Wycombe have proved the surprise package in the third tier so far this season. Gareth Ainsworth’s side sit second in the standings following back-to-back wins over Portsmouth and Rochdale, but their resolve will be tested when the division’s top scorers, Peterborough, head to Adams Park on Saturday.
Michael Appleton will be chasing his first win in charge of Lincoln when they play host to Sunderland, while Bolton will be hoping to secure their first win of the campaign in a Lancashire derby against Blackpool on Monday night.
The top two will meet at Gresty Road in League Two on Saturday and hosts Crewe could leapfrog Exeter in the standings with victory.
Crewe have surprised many so far this season as nobody expected them to be challenging for automatic promotion, while Exeter have missed out in the play-offs in two of the last three years, but look well-placed to mount another serious push this term.
The fixture will also pit two of the most exciting young managers in the division against each other, with Crewe’s David Artell facing off against his Exeter counterpart Matt Taylor.
Both Bradford and Swindon will consider themselves as two of the bigger teams in the fourth tier and they meet at Valley Parade.
Promotion favourites Bradford currently find themselves outside the play-off places, while Swindon are in the top seven as they bid to end their three-season stay in the bottom tier.