Leicester City - Swansea City

After they spent a year in League One, Leicester earned an immediate return to the second tier of English football. The way how Foxes conquered the league gives a believe Championship isn’t a highest level that club can reach. Team was superior especially at their home Walkers Stadium, they’re unbeaten in their last 20 home matches (eleven wins and nine draws) since losing to Millwall last September. Ambitious chairman Milan Mandaric (ex Portsmouth) put the play-off spot as the objective for the forthcoming season. Club signed five players, midfielder Richie Wellens (from Doncaster), young defender Jack Hobbs from Chelsea, winger Dany N'Guessan (Lincoln) and two defenders Wayne Brown (Hull) and Robbie Neilson (Hearts). With a leadership by excellent manager Nigel Pearson, seems team has a potential to achieve the objective. To make the things not so good, took care team star and the best striker from previous season, Matty Fryatt who has a leg infection and only played half an hour in pre-season. Captain Stephen Clemence is still recovering from injury which separated him from the field almost whole previous season, while vice-captain, midfielder Matt Oakley has recovered from a knock sustained last weekend and he’ll play. New loan signing from Sunderland, forward Martyn Waghorn will have his debut. 

In the previous season, Swansea had a dream debut in Championship, playing much over the expectations and at the end almost caught a play-off, finishing at 8th place. Now have to cope with the “second season” syndrome when teams usually lost all enthusiasm that playing in higher league provokes and the majority of pre-season opinion is that they will struggle to replicate last season's results. Beside that, Welsh side suffered three significant losses over the summer, with maybe the best manager in Championship last year, Roberto Martinez and top scorer Jason Scotland both moving to Wigan. Excellent midfielder Jordi Gomez, little later also joined Wigan. The biggest signing is ex QPR manager Paulo Sousa. From the same club came midfielder Jordi Lopez, striker Stephen Dobbie came from Queen of the South, while last season on loan winger Nathan Dyer signed a permanent deal. Sousa has some injury concerns for the season opener. Winger Tom Butler is out following hernia surgery, as are midfielders Ferrie Bodde (knee) and excellent Darren Pratley (shoulder). The Welsh club have lost their opening league fixture in each of the last three years.

After one year of domination in League One, Foxes are full of confidence, spirits are high and it seems Nigel Pearson probably couldn’t wish a better opponent for the opener than weakened Swansea. First round calls on limited stake, but home win. 2.30 at Pinnacle.
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