Swansea City host Birmingham City in the opening round of the 2023/24 Championship campaign this weekend.
Swansea City go into this new season under a new manager in Michael Duff, and with a number of new and exciting players.
The Swans recently brought in Mykola Kukharevych and Brighton goalkeeper Carl Rushworth on loan, adding to their positive summer transfer window so far.
But it’s not been quite as positive as Birmingham City’s. Blues have signed eight new players with all of them joining on permanent deals, giving fans an unfamiliar sense of optimism going into the new season.
Here, a handful of our writers make their predictions for the game…
“I’m very excited to see how Birmingham City get on this season. A comfortable league finish is always welcomed at the club but honestly, I think they can really challenge.
“They’ve signed some really good players and John Eustace is a very good coach, so I certainly think Blues are a team to keep an eye on this season.
“And the same can somewhat be said of Swansea City. Duff is a very good coach and they’ve had a surprisingly good summer, managing to keep hold of Joel Piroe too.
“This should be a good game but I don’t think there’ll be anything between the two.”
Score prediction: Swansea City 2-2 Birmingham City
“Birmingham City are one of several sides to have enjoyed a really eye-catching summer transfer window and the optimistic mood around the club makes for a breathe of fresh air going into the new season.
“A tough opener against Duff’s Swansea awaits though. They’ll be keen to start their own new era in impressive fashion, but I think I’m just leaning towards the visitors.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if the Blues are in the chasing pack for play-off football this season and a win against the Swans would be a good way to start. I’ll back them to get that win too.”
Score prediction: Swansea City 1-2 Birmingham City