The race for automatic promotion in the Championship is reaching an epic climax with just three matches left to play.
Just two points now separate table toppers Middlesbrough and chasing Burnley and Brighton & Hove Albion in second and third place after Boro’s 1-1 draw with The Clarets at Turf Moor on Tuesday evening.
Leaders Middlesbrough look to have an advantage over their promotion rivals with two of their remaining three fixtures at home. Since manager Aitor Karanka declared that he would be staying at the club following a public fall out the Teessiders have gone from strength to strength, winning six and drawing one of their last seven league fixtures.
Middlesbrough welcome Ipswich Town to The Riverside Stadium on Saturday before a tricky trip to St Andrews to face Birmingham City. On the final day, Boro have home advantage in a mouth watering battle against Brighton & Hove Albion.
Second placed Burnley’s hopes for automatic promotion could hinge on their success in Friday’s Lancashire derby at bitter rivals Preston North End. Should Sean Dyche’s side manage to come through the fixture with a successful result, they then have a home fixture with mid table QPR before finishing the season at crisis club Charlton Athletic.
Chasing Brighton & Hove Albion will also face The Addicks when they travel to The Valley on Saturday before a tough fixture at home to Derby County and that potential crucial final day trip to Middlesbrough.
The automatic promotion run in
Friday 22 April Preston North End v Burnley
Saturday 23 April Charlton Athletic v Brighton & Hove Albion
Saturday 23 April Middlesbrough v Ipswich Town
Friday 29 April Birmingham City V Middlesbrough
Monday 2 May Brighton & Hove Albion v Derby
Monday 2 May Burnley v Queens Park Rangers
Saturday 7 May Charlton Athletic v Burnley
Saturday 7 May Middlesbrough v Brighton & Hove Albion