Traditionally, the excitement and quality of top-flight football are unparalleled and to a certain extent, that is true in the homeland of the Premier League. That said, season-after-season, England's second tier, the Championship, is proving one of the most exhilarating divisions in Europe. Every campaign new teams are putting their names forward for promotion (just look at Brighton and Huddersfield last term) whilst bigger sides are getting sucked into the relegation plunge (Blackburn are another prime example).
It is this tone of unpredictability which renders the league so invigorating and throughout the season, some players especially demand attention. Ahead of the 2017/18 campaign, here's a shortlist of five key players to keep an eye on as the new season unfolds...
#1 Chris Wood
Despite Chris Wood's best efforts (eventually finish Championship top scorer with 27 league goals), Leeds couldn't secure a play-off place last term, meaning the clinical Kiwi is destined for another season in England's second tier. That is providing rumoured transfers to West Ham, Stoke City or Huddersfield don't materialise. Wood also assisted four goals and took his overall goal tally for the Yorkshire club to forty, outlining the potency of the forward.
Having finished seventh in the division last campaign, Leeds will undoubtedly be among the favourites to finish in the playoffs this upcoming season and their success will be heavily dependent on the services of Wood. The prolific frontman will be keen to prove he's not a one-season wonder and will be looking to further his stellar reputation if a move to the Premier League is on the cards.
The 25-year-old is quick, strong in the air and adept in one-on-one situations. The most prolific frontman in the Championship is approaching the peak stage of his career and is consequently going to lead from the front for United this term.