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Preview: Sky Bet EFL Matchday 6

8 September 2017

Following the international break, a full round of EFL fixtures commence this weekend, with the Sky Bet Championship returning.

Here’s our Matchday 6 preview…

Whites aiming for hat-trick

After racking up successive 2-0 away victories, Thomas Christiansen’s Leeds United will be in search of a third straight win, when they host Burton Albion this Saturday.

The men from Elland Road picked up three points against Sunderland and Nottingham Forest respectively, and have the chance make it a treble on home turf in their clash with the Brewers.

Nigel Clough’s side are unbeaten in their last three outings in all competitions however, and they came out on top when the pair last met, winning 2-1 at the Pirelli Stadium back in April.

Black Cats and Blades meet after 12 years

Saturday’s fixture at the Stadium of Light sees Sunderland and Sheffield United lock horns for the first time since January of 2005.

This weekend’s hosts won 1-0 on that occasion and do have the advantage over their opponents in terms of the head-to-head record, with 65 wins compared to the Blades’ 49.

The Sky Bet League One champions do sit higher in the table going into the weekend, but that’s down to their home form — they are yet to hit the net away from Bramall Lane since promotion to the second tier.

Around the grounds

The weekend’s EFL action gets under way at Pride Park, with Derby County taking on Leonid Slutsky’s Hull City in front of the Sky Sports cameras on Friday night.

Saturday sees league leaders Cardiff City travel to Craven Cottage to take on Fulham, and second-placed Ipswich Town are also on the road — they visit Queens Park Rangers.

Steve Bruce’s Aston Villa host a winless Brentford at Villa Park and the other side seeking a maiden three points, Bolton Wanderers, entertain Garry Monk’s Middlesbrough.

There’s an evening fixture at Hillsborough to round off the weekend, where Sheffield Wednesday welcome Nottingham Forest in another live televised match.

Sky Bet Championship: Matchday 6 fixtures (3pm unless stated)

Friday 8th September 2017

Derby County v Hull City (7:45pm - live on Sky Sports)

Saturday 9th September 2017

Aston Villa v Brentford
Bolton Wanderers v Middlesbrough
Fulham v Cardiff City
Leeds United v Burton Albion
Norwich City v Birmingham City
Preston North End v Barnsley
Queens Park Rangers v Ipswich Town
Reading v Bristol City
Sheffield Wednesday v Nottingham Forest (5:30pm - live on Sky Sports)
Sunderland v Sheffield United
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Millwall

Winning start for Hasselbaink?

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink gets his Northampton Town tenure up and running at Sixfields this weekend.

The Cobblers face Doncaster Rovers, who picked up a point against early season pacesetters Peterborough United last time out, ending the Posh’s perfect start to the new campaign.

The omens are good for the Dutchman to make a positive start too, with him yet to lose a first match in charge of a club thus far.

Addicks aiming for six

Should Karl Robinson’s Charlton Athletic side pick up another three points at the Valley this weekend, they would equal a feat last achieved achieved by an Addicks squad back in 2012.

Their impressive form on home soil at the end of the 2016/17 campaign has carried on into this, with triumphs over Bristol Rovers and Northampton Town respectively.

Standing in their way of win number six are Southend United, who are without a victory since the opening day of the season.

Around the grounds

Graham Alexander’s Scunthorpe United side can make it four successive league victories with a win over Blackpool — they meet at Glanford Park.

Oxford United, who are unbeaten in their last five encounters with Gillingham, welcome Ady Pinnock’s winless squad to the Kassam Stadium, and Rochdale — another side yet to taste victory — take on Blackburn Rovers for their first EFL meeting since 1974.

Bristol Rovers meet Walsall, who they haven’t managed to get the better of in their last eight match-ups at the Memorial Stadium, while two of the division’s unbeaten sides, Shrewsbury Town and Wigan Athletic, clash at Greenhous Meadow.

Elsewhere, Fleetwood Town take on Oldham Athletic, who have lost five of five this term, while table-topping Peterborough United host Bradford City.

Sky Bet League One: Matchday 6 fixtures (All 3pm kick-off)

Saturday 9th September 2017

AFC Wimbledon v Portsmouth
Bristol Rovers v Walsall
Charlton Athletic v Southend United
Fleetwood Town v Oldham Athletic
Northampton Town v Doncaster Rovers
Oxford United v Gillingham
Peterborough United v Bradford City
Plymouth Argyle v Milton Keynes Dons
Rochdale v Blackburn Rovers
Rotherham United v Bury
Scunthorpe United v Blackpool
Shrewsbury Town v Wigan Athletic

Colchester's blues against the Reds

Since their first league meeting back in 2012, Colchester United haven’t yet managed to get the better of Crawley Town in eight attempts.

Half of those encounters have ended in a share of the spoils ultimately, but the U’s’ ambition this Saturday will be centred on taking maximum points off Harry Kewell’s Reds.

Colchester’s last home outing resulted in an emphatic 5-1 win over Forest Green Rovers, but Crawley come into the fixture on the back of successive wins after a sluggish start.

Johnson returns to Glovers

Yeovil Town’s home encounter with Cheltenham Town not only presents an opportunity to take three points, but also a sub-plot as Gary Johnson comes up against his former side.

After spending time in the Huish Park dugout in two lengthy spells at the Glovers, Johnson returns this Saturday, but as manager of the Robins.

The Cheltenham boss emerged victorious many times during his tenure in Somerset, and will be looking to do so once again with his Cheltenham side currently sitting in the bottom two.

Around the grounds

Mansfield Town and Grimsby Town kick off the Sky Bet League Two weekend, in a lunchtime clash at Field Mill.

Top of the table Exeter City travel to newly promoted Forest Green Rovers, with second placed Stevenage also taking on the other promoted side, Lincoln City, at the Lamex Stadium.

Newport County and Wycombe Wanderers have made strong starts to the campaign, sitting fourth and seventh respectively. The Exiles’ have played just once at Rodney Parade this season, when they swept aside Chesterfield 4-1.

Elsewhere, Notts County host Morecambe as they look to stretch their unbeaten run to five games, and Luton Town and Accrington Stanley — two of the three sides to have hit double figures in terms of goals — are at home, facing Swindon Town and Carlisle United respectively.

Sky Bet League Two: Matchday 6 fixtures (3pm unless stated)

Saturday 9th September 2017

Accrington Stanley v Carlisle United
Barnet v Cambridge United
Colchester United v Crawley Town
Coventry City v Port Vale
Crewe Alexandra v Chesterfield
Forest Green Rovers v Exeter City
Luton Town v Swindon Town
Mansfield Town v Grimsby Town (1pm)
Newport County v Wycombe Wanderers
Notts County v Morecambe
Stevenage v Lincoln City
Yeovil Town v Cheltenham Town

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