Middlesbrough are currently the third favourites to be promoted as champions according to the bookmakers’.
This is down to the excellent run of form that the club had under Chris Wilder following the sacking of Neil Warnock, as the former Northampton Town manager managed to win 16 and draw seven of his 33 matches in charge, seeing them miss out on the play-offs by just five points.
Boro have managed to sign the likes of Zack Steffen from Manchester City, as well as crucial defensive recruits in Darragh Lenihan and Ryan Giles (loan from Wolves), of which both of the latter were at Blackburn Rovers last season. The return of Chuba Akpom could also be of use following the expiry of Andraz Sporar’s loan contract from Sporting Lisbon.
Meanwhile, Reading are one of the favourites to be relegated following an abysmal 2021/22 campaign that would have seen them finish worse off than the likes of Derby County if they’d both started on zero points. Even though they were deducted nine points themselves, they only finished four above Peterborough United last season and have lost a number of key players this summer.