Congratulations to West Bromwich Albion
Math has never been my strong point, at least not since 6th grade. Once I started taking pre-algebra the next year, I just knew I was in trouble for the rest of my school days.
I believe, however, that my math is correct in this scenario. If West Brom, currently on top of the Coca-Cola Championship with 77 points after 44 games, gains two or more points in their last two games, or if third-place Hull City fails to win both of their remaining games, the Baggies will be assured of automatic promotion to the Premier League for next season.
Realistically, West Brom only needs one more point to move up to England’s top flight. That one point would give them 78, and even if Hull City was to win their last two games (which would put them on 78 as well), W.B.A. would have a far superior goal differential and that’s the first tiebreaker in England.
If you’re wondering, West Brom’s final two matches are against 21st place Southampton (at home), and at QPR, who are in 14th, so their chances to pick up a point or two are obviously pretty good.
Stoke City, in second place, has 75 points right now. The Potters’ position isn’t quite as secure but is still strong; their goal differential is five goals worse than that of Hull, but they do have a three point advantage and games against two teams in 20th place or lower. They seem like a good bet to join West Brom in the Premiership next year.
The playoff spots are still up for grabs and will go down to the last day of the season. We have an idea of who the four teams competing for that one last berth to the Premiership will be — Hull City, Bristol City (who was on top of the Championship only a couple weeks ago), Watford, and Crystal Palace — but a victory for Wolverhampton over Cardiff City today would complicate things. Only four points separate teams 3-6 and obviously, you want to finish in either 3rd or 4th to gain the “home-field advantage” in the two-leg playoff semifinals.
I did a post about the Championship recently, talking about the parity in the league and how exciting and heart-pounding it was for fans. While I don’t think any of the teams who come up to the Premiership next season will be able to stay up, you still have to give them a lot of credit for making it out of this league this season. Every game is a fight, every game is a battle for three points and every point you can get is so valuable. That’s not the case in the Premiership, where some teams basically packed it in for the season in February. I’ve enjoyed this race in the Championship, and wish more people in the mainstream media would pay attention to it.