Educated Guesswork: Barnsley v Wigan Athletic

The Championship is back...

And just like that – the football season has returned. Forget the disappointments from our various national teams over the summer and all can be forgiven for any mistakes that your club made last season. For tomorrow is the day that everything resets and your club has a chance to start again.

However there have been some consequences from the previous season. Some teams are a division lower and will have to work hard not to buckle under the pressure of being instant favourites whilst others are higher and will have to fight not to become instant relegation candidates. It all kicks off tomorrow – so let’s take a look at one of the matches from the Championship. Barnsley vs Wigan

Barnsley head into the season with a mixed bag of results under their belt after playing some fairly tough opposition – they’ve scored 6 goals but conceded 8, Won 1 game, drawn 2 and lost another.

And whilst Barnsley narrowly avoided relegation last season – they will be hoping not to be dragged into that battle again this year and have made some signings which could help them finish with a comfortable mid table position.

Wigan on the other hand have undergone massive changes since being relegated in May. 10 players have joined and 10 have left and when you count a managerial change into that transformation as well - it’s fair to say that Wigan’s line up will look substantially different to the team that finished last season. Wigan’s pre season form raises a lot of questions.

They coasted through a tour of America, yet only beat Morecambe by a solitary goal and then lost to Dundee United. It will take a while for this new-look Wigan team to hit top gear and even then further replacements could well be needed if McCarthy, McArthur and McMannaman end up leaving the club.

I think that at the end of the season you will see Wigan safe in a playoff position and Barnsley sitting somewhere around 17th or 18th – but I don’t think that gap will be reflected tomorrow.

Prediction: Barnsley 1 Wigan 1 (or a narrow Wigan victory

image: © Ben Sutherland

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