The Championship is one of the hardest leagues in the world to get out of. One weekend can change the entire complexity of the league and can take one team from a playoff position to the middle of the table. Form is the biggest factor that teams must find in order to get out of the division, and for that to develop sides will need their best players to perform on a weekly basis.
Finding that form can be hard, however, and there have been many players down the years that have failed to make the desired impression in the second-tier. There have been a number of players already this season that have taken the bull by the horns and driven their team into a strong position. But, which stars have stood out for their respective teams?
The man that has caught the eye more than most already this season is QPR’s English born 21-year-old Eberechi Eze. Many expected the R’s to struggle this season after losing their talisman Luke Freeman to Sheffield United over the summer.
However, despite their form dropping off over recent weeks, Eze has enjoyed an excellent start to the season and has filled the void left by Freeman.
He is likely to gain a lot of attention by a host of Premier League sides in the upcoming January transfer window after scoring six goals in his 17 appearances this season. He has also contributed four assists, and his pace frightens the life out of opposing defenders.
He wins an average of 2.5 fouls per game and dribbles with the ball an average of 3.5 times per game. According to WhoScored, he has also won five man of the match accolades already this campaign, and he would certainly get into most expert’s team of the season so far.
Eberiche has Nigerian parents and has been visited by the president of the Federation in an attempt to join the Super Eagles. He has already played for England U21.
The bookmakers’ favourites for promotion this season are Slaven Bilic’s West Bromwich Albion, and that isn’t much of a shock considering the early season form of their Brazilian midfielder Matheus Pereira.
He plays a crucial role in this vibrant Albion side, and is deployed in the number ten position. Nonetheless, he can play as a winger, since he has enough pace to compete with a stud horse in the Kentucky Derby race.
His relationship with Romaine Sawyers plays a crucial part in the attacking set-up for the Baggies, and he has already recorded six assists this campaign.
He has an eye for goal too, after finding the net on three occasions. His pass completion rate is an applaudable 82.3%, and it would seem that the Baggies will make the move official as soon as they can.
His quality will come as no surprise to Bundesliga fans, who would have seen him run the show for Nurnberg last season, but many expected him to struggle with the physicality in the Championship.
Instead, he has thrived, and will be a crucial factor should the Albion have hopes of automatic promotion. He is on loan from Sporting Clube de Portugal, but his buyout clause is rather low, and it is likely that WBA will activate it already this Winter.
There was additional pressure on the Brentford man to deliver this season following the departure of Neal Maupay, and he is delivering for the Bees. He has already scored eleven goals this season and boasts an impressive 69% success rate in terms of shots on target.
There are already questions whether Brentford will be able to keep hold of Watkins past the January transfer window, but if they can, then they will have a good chance of securing a playoff berth.
He in on course to beat his best-ever return in the Championship, which was set last season when he scored 12 goals. The 23-year-old has a big future ahead of him, but already this season he has caught the eye in the Championship.