Who will Sunderland play in League One next season? All the permutations ahead of a dramatic final day in the Championship

It’s unusual that the Championship enters its final round of fixtures without at least one team relegated.

Wednesday, 22nd July 2020, 4:45 pm

But as the 2019/20 season draws to a close, no teams have been mathematically relegated from the second tier – with eight sides still in with a chance of dropping down to League One.

So who will join Sunderland in the third tier next term?

We take a look at all the permutations ahead of a dramatic final day of the season…

Sign up to our Sunderland AFC newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

All the permutations in the Championship relegation battle

HULL CITY

Current position: 24th

Current points: 45

Final day fixture: Cardiff City (A)

Hull are all-but doomed to relegation given they are three points adrift of safety and have a considerably worse goal difference than the teams around them.

To have any chance of staying up, Hull will need to beat Cardiff City, Barnsley would have to fail to win and both Luton and Charlton would need to lose - coupled with a 16-goal swing in their favour. It’s unlikely…

BARNSLEY

Current position: 23rd

Current points: 46

Final day fixture: Brentford (A)

Similarly to Hull, Barnsley also need to win to have any chance of staying up. But they too are reliant on results elsewhere - and need Charlton to lose and Luton to fail to win.

LUTON TOWN

Current position: 22nd

Current points: 48

Final day fixture: Blackburn Rovers (H)

Within touching distance of safety, a draw could be enough for Luton providing Charlton Athletic lose - but a win could see them move ahead of Birmingham and Middlesbrough and boost their survival chances.

CHARLTON ATHLETIC

Current position: 21st

Current points: 48

Final day fixture: Leeds United (A)

A tough final day fixture for the Addicks, but their superior goal difference stands them in good stead in the survival battle.

If they win, they should be safe - while a draw could also be enough provided that Luton do not win.

BIRMINGHAM CITY

Current position: 20th

Current points: 50

Final day fixture: Derby County (H)

In all reality, Birmingham are all-but guaranteed to be in the Championship next season - and a point against Derby should be enough.

MIDDLESBROUGH

Current position: 19th

Current points: 50

Final day fixture: Sheffield Wednesday (A)

Similarly to Birmingham, Boro look to have done just enough to survive - and a point at Hillsborough should see them safe.

WIGAN ATHLETIC

Current position: 13th

Current points: 58

Final day fixture: Fulham (H)

So we’ve dealt with the sides currently in the mire at the bottom of the second tier, but off-field issues could see Wigan Athletic dragged into relegation danger.

The Latics will see a 12-point deduction applied after their game with Fulham this evening - although this is all subject to an appeal to be heard on July 31.

So in order to fend off relegation for certain, Wigan need to beat Fulham and hope that Luton Town or Charlton Athletic suffer defeat - any other results would see them drop into the bottom three once a points deduction is applied.

SHEFFIELD WEDNESDAY

Current position: 16th

Current points: 56

Final day fixture: Middlesbrough (H)

Still with us? Good, because things are about to get even more complicated…

Wigan aren’t the only team facing a points deduction - with Sheffield Wednesday also potentially set to see points docked.

But while Wigan’s deduction will be automatically applied following this evening’s fixtures, Wednesday are currently going through an appeal process after being charged with financial misconduct over the £60million sale of Hillsborough.

They could be docked as many as 21 points, but it remains unclear when a decision will be made on how many - if any - points the Owls will be deducted, and whether it will see them fall into the drop zone.