New-look League One awash with opportunity for Pompey

Monday's play-off success for Coventry City has completed the League One line-up for next season.

Thursday, 31st May 2018, 12:00 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 10:27 am
New Sunderland manager Jack Ross

And, as it stands today, it looks like a third tier ripe with opportunity as the Blues bid to make it to the Championship at the second attempt.

Thankfully, there will be 285 fewer miles on the clock for the travelling faithful who clocked up 8,756 on the road last term.

But the make-up of the league, through these eyes, appears to be a level weaker than the one Kenny Jackett’s men just competed in.

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The caveat to that statement is the current vantage point is nine weeks south of the new campaign – and a lot can happen in that time.

As a starting point, however, the three teams coming down into the division look weaker than the trio leaving it.

The fact the promoted sides – Wigan, Blackburn and Rotherham – were relegated the previous campaign underlines their strength, certainly in the case of Rovers and the Latics.

The three relegated teams this time look short of the strength shown by the automatically-promoted duo.

We wait to see how Sunderland emerge from their recent turmoil, after the appointment of a relative unknown in Jack Ross from the second level of Scottish football.

Barnsley are currently without a manager, while Burton Albion have massively punched above their weight to spend two seasons at the level above.

Of the teams coming up, Luton look the best placed to kick on. Accrington and Wycombe would revel in survival, with Coventry a club of status but not necessarily depth.

Of the rest, Charlton, Peterborough, Scunthorpe and Plymouth look like the obvious rivals. But fans will think there are few excuses not to finish in the top six.