Sheffield United, Scunthorpe and Preston North End were the teams relegated from the Championship last season, with the Blades and PNE available at a big price to go down.
It goes to show that there are very few teams that can’t be sucked into a relegation scrap, especially in an evenly-matched division where sides will regularly take points off each other.
Barnsley are the favourites with several bookmakers to go down, despite the fact that the Tykes finished 17th in the division last term, winning as many home matches as Leeds United. The best odds about Keith Hill’s team are 19/10 (Skybet) although it could pay to look elsewhere.
Doncaster Rovers supporters will certainly be nervous about the forthcoming campaign after their team finished the campaign badly and Coral go 2/1 that Sean O’Driscoll’s team don’t remain in the Championship, while Marlon King leaving Coventry has seen their relegation odds shorten to 9/4 (Victor Chandler).
Perhaps it will be another season of struggle for the well-supported Derby County, with the Rams on offer at a best price of 6/1 (bet365 – £200 free bets). The signing of Nathan Tyson looks like a desperate attempt to get more goals and manager Nigel Clough has not been given much money to spend.
Meanwhile, these are worrying times to be a Peterborough supporter, with George Boyd set to follow Craig Mackail-Smith and Aaron McLean out of London Road and it is a surprise to find 5/2 (William Hill – £25 free betting) is on offer about Posh.
Crystal Palace (5/2 Victor Chandler) have had a decent pre-season and Dougie Freedman will hope that the Eagles can improve on the road, with Watford an 11/4 chance (Sportingbet) and the Hornets are sure to feature in the bottom half of the table after the departure of manager Malky Mackay and striker Danny Graham.
However, we shouldn’t discount a few teams at bigger prices and it is interesting to note that Birmingham City are now as short as 4/1 with bet365, although Boylesports go 7/1 about the Midlands club who have seen their best players and manager leave after being relegated from the Premier League.
Perhaps Chris Hughton will be a stabilising influence since arriving at St Andrews, although the former Newcastle boss might have to work miracles to bring about the same immediate success that was managed at St James’ Park. The same goes for Blackpool boss Ian Holloway and his Tangerines side are 16/1 (Coral) to go down.
Southampton are strangely big at 20/1 (Paddy Power) despite being new boys in the division and they will renew a Hampshire rivalry with Portsmouth (6/1 Skybet), with Pompey still completely skint after their well-documented financial problems.