We’re all set for another season of thrilling action in the Sky Bet League One this term. Will we see the big boys dominate, or will Burton Albion’s exploits from last season give the smaller teams in the division hope to push towards the upper echelons? Oh and let’s not forget the small matter of the first ever league meetings between AFC Wimbledon and Milton Keynes Dons…
The early favourites for the trophy are once again Sheffield United. A huge club with a fanbase that far exceeds it’s recent performances in the league, the Blades have been unable to produce a promotion-winning side in the last few seasons despite being among the favourites year-on-year. Will Chris Wilder, fresh from his League Two title-winning season at Northampton Town, be the man to finally lead the South Yorkshire side out of the third tier?
Following Sheffield United in the running are last season’s play-off contenders Millwall and Bradford City. With relatively large budgets and coming fresh off the back of progressive seasons, this season will be seen as a huge opportunity for promotion by fans of both clubs. The Bantams have hired legendary player Stuart McCall as their manager. The former Scotland international played over 400 games for the Yorkshire outfit over two spells.
In terms of the team’s relegated from the Championship, a lot of rebuilding is to be done, particularly with Bolton Wanderers and Charlton Athletic. Financial problems have held these two former Premier League sides back in the last few seasons and with so many changes to be made both on and off the pitch at the Macron Stadium and the Valley before either club are in a position to be promotion contenders.
At the other end of the betting, teams such as Oldham Athletic and Port Vale are being tipped to struggle after hiring new managers over the summer. The bookies do however feel that the likes of AFC Wimbledon and Bristol Rovers can take momentum from their promotions from League Two and push towards the League One play-offs this time around.