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Who will win the Championship play-offs?
Published : 01 May 2012 11:31:46
Four teams are set to battle it out for the last remaining place in the Premier League next season
Two-leg semi-finals start this week with West Ham United taking on Cardiff City and Birmingham meeting Blackpool.
The Hammers inflicted a heavy defeat on Nottingham Forest at the City Ground just a few weeks into the season before winning the return fixture 2-1 at Upton Park in January, at a time when the Reds seemed to be sliding towards relegation.
Against the Bluebirds of Cardiff, Forest were edged out 1-0 in South Wales in late November and by the same scoreline in the final act of 2011.
Birmingham City signalled the end for Steve McClaren's ill-fated time in charge at the City Ground with a 3-1 win there at the start of October but as February came to a close, against the odds, Dexter Blackstock's brace ended a 15-game unbeaten run for the Blues on their own turf.
A similarly impressive victory was gained at Blackpool in Steve Cotterill's second game in charge, making it two wins out of two for the new man, whose side took their final step towards Championship safety with a goalless draw against the same opponents three weeks ago.