If you’re a team in the Championship, the aim, when the time is right, will naturally be to challenge for promotion to the Premier League. If you make it to the top flight, you reap significant financial rewards, and it’s why so many outfits are desperate to get to the promised land. But, there will be one thing you need to make it happen.
Using the current Championship campaign as an example, the one thing you will need is a striker you can rely on to score goals. We’re not talking ten, twelve or fifteen goals. We’re talking twenty plus. And, in some cases, as we will come onto shortly, over thirty goals.
At the start of the current season, the likes of Fulham and Bournemouth were tipped for automatic promotion. And, at the time of writing, they occupy first and second place. Now, many people will have fancied these two outfits to climb out of the Championship because they have a playing squad full of quality and depth that perhaps other sides don’t have. And you could suggest that has proven to be the case thus far.
However, both teams also have strikers who can consistently deliver the goods in front of goal. Fulham, who currently leads England's second-tier, has Aleksander Mitrovic leading the line. He's scored over thirty goals already, breaking records in the process, and even has a handful of assists to his name. Not only have the Serbian's goals been crucial in winning games, but they have also allowed Marco Silva’s side to build a goal difference that is more than double that of Bournemouth’s.
Mitrovic is for sure the Championship’s most outstanding performer this season, but Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke won’t be far behind him in the shakeup. Solanke, 24, is a player who has really come alive this season, racking up 20+ goals and some assists too. His goals have made up close to half of those scored in total by Bournemouth and put them right in the automatic promotion picture as a result.
The reality is that teams should have the solid foundation of a defensive unit, including the goalkeeper. But, if they want to win games and have the ambition to push on and mount a promotion charge, they’re going to need a goalscorer they can rely on, as we have seen with Mitrovic and Solanke.
While Fulham and Bournemouth were up there as favourites, Blackburn losing top goal-getter Adam Armstrong in the summer to Southampton saw many lesser there expectations of what the team could achieve this season. However, as everyone will know, we have seen Ben Brereton Diaz come to the fore, and he’s hit the twenty goal mark already. Therefore, Blackburn are still well and truly in the playoff picture, which again shows how integral a top striker is for teams in the Championship.
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