Last Season: Relegated from the Premier League
Vincent Kompany takes charge and will be tearing up the Burnley blueprint, adopting a new, technical style of play, lowering the average age of the squad, all while trying to secure an immediate return to the Premier League.
Some savvy recruitment has been achieved, but one big question surrounds the existing core: Cork, Barnes, Rodriguez and co. How will they adapt to a different style, and how motivated will they be? That could make all the difference.
Last Season: Relegated from the Premier League
The Canaries approach to relegation has been very 'Keep Calm & Carry On', with no changes in the dugout and few to the squad. With a fanbase that's noticeably less confident than two years ago, a strong start may be key. Dean Smith is a 'safe pair of hands' in comparison to the high risk/reward approach taken by fellow relegated sides Watford and Burnley, and it shouldn't take long for confidence to return.
Last Season: Seventh in the Championship
Chairman Steve Gibson made a statement of intent in hiring Chris Wilder, and is happy to back him, helped by the lucrative sale of Djed Spence. With upgrades in every area other than up front, Wilder now needs to get some goalscorers in the building by September. Everything else is in place for Boro to be a formidable side.
Last Season: Relegated from the Premier League
A change in managerial tact, with young English manager Rob Edwards plucked away from Forest Green. It's a step up in calibre, but Edwards has worked with top level players with Wolves and England, and is an impressive coach and man manager. With an abundance of movement in and out still to take place, it could be a chaotic start to the season, but no doubt he has a squad full of quality and depth.
5. Sheffield United
Last Season: Fifth in the Championship
Last season's Play-Off Semi Finalists will begin the season full of confidence, knowing they established themselves as a top team at the level last season after a poor start. Heckingbottom has the belief of fans and players alike, and we can expect Blades to be a strong all round team. Their ability to replace the whirlwind attacker Morgan Gibbs-White will perhaps be the defining factor in their season.
6. West Bromwich Albion
Last Season: 10th in the Championship
The Baggies made their promotion intent very clear with the signings of Jed Wallace and John Swift, two of the league's best attacking players over the last few years. Adding former favourite Okay Yokuşlu was another eye-catching piece of transfer business and gives their squad a very strong look. Steve Bruce will need to hit the ground running to keep the fanbase from getitng restless.
7. Luton Town
Last Season: Sixth in the Championship
A club whose relentless year-on-year improvement shows no sign of letting up, Luton Town have lost a key defensive player in Kal Naismith, and added firepower and depth in other areas. Under Nathan Jones, they have consistently set very high standards, so it's tough to see them falling away from last season's 75 point tally.
Last Season: Ninth in the Championship
The departure of talisman Jed Wallace is a huge loss for any side, but MIllwall have gone about replacing him in a smart and ambitious manner, spending a record fee on Dutch attacker Zain Flemming, with Honeyman, Afobe and two Leeds loan signings Cresswell and Shackleton giving Gary Rowett more strength in depth. Sure to be hard to beat and competitive, can they score enough goals to truly threaten the Top 6?
9. Coventry City
Last Season: 12th in the Championship
The Sky Blues and Mark Robins - it just works. Smart decision-making, determined management and good recruitment has got established them as a good Championship side. Can they reach another level and tickle the playoffs? They need to hold onto key players O'Hare, Hamer and Gyokeres, become more consistent overall - and improve their finishing - to stand a chance.
10. Hull City
Last Season: 19th in the Championship
Having sold Keane Lewis-Potter for a large fee, owner Acun Ilicali has splashed the cash to persuade some big names to join: Seri, Estupinan and Turkish internationals Sinik and Tufan. It's always tough to know how such players will adapt, but their pedigree is impressive. With the jury still out on manager Shota Arveladze, it honestly feels like anything could happen with Hull City this season.
Last Season: 11th in the Championship
Mark Warburton has been replaced by first time Head Coach Mick Beale, formerly assistant to Steven Gerrard. A highly rated coach and tactician, he's breathed new life into QPR and it will be interesting to see how they go. It's clearly a mid/long-term project, so there's less pressure on immediate results. If Willock, Chair and co can stay fit and click, they should be a very entertaining watch and a big threat to opposition teams.
12. Bristol City
Last Season: 17th in the Championship
It's been a difficult few years for Bristol City, mainly due to an inability to keep the ball out of their goal. But with a few nice summer additions in Kal Naismith and Kane Wilson, there's hope on that front. Nigel Pearson has got his feet under the table and may be able to get things going this season. There's plenty of talent and firepower in the squad, now it's about adding consistency and toughness
Last Season: 15th in the Championship
Swansea's first season under Russell Martin was one of consolidation and growth, so there's a bit more pressure on results in 22/23. Martin has moved to strengthen a back line that was far too leaky last season, and will be hoping their free scoring end to the season is maintained. The football will be beautiful at times, but Swansea need to be sharper on both ends to rise up the table.
14. Stoke City
Last Season: 14th in the Championship
Last season was something of a non-event for Stoke City, and the fans will not settle for another. Michael O'Neill needs to get the best out of a squad that has plenty of talent but has suffered greatly from injuries to key men. Some of the older players have been jettisoned in favour of more youth and speed - whether O'Neill is the man the get the best out of the group is still up in the air.
15. Blackburn Rovers
Last Season: 8th in the Chammpionship
From last season's squad, Rovers' captain (Lenihan), player of the year (van Hecke), most experienced player (Johnson), three first-team regulars (Nyambe, Rothwell, Khadra) have all left, while top scorer (Brereton) faces an uncertain future. With a new Head Coach in Jon Dahl Tomasson, it's leaves a feeling of uncertainty. But, if Tomasson gets it right, there's also potential in this side, with a number of talented young players ready to reach the next level. Tough to expect big things at this moment in time, albeit late business will surely leave the squad looking stronger come September.
Last Season: 13th in the Championship
Ryan Lowe impressed in his first six months at Preston North End, and will now be hoping to rise into the top half. The depature of three key loanees, and a slow start in replacing them, has tempered expectation somewhat. North End cannot compete financially with many in this division, but Lowe's side should be ambitious in how they play. A lack of strength in depth may hinder them, but they'll take some scalps.
Last Season: Promoted via playoffs
Despite 'only' finishing 5th in League One last season, Sunderland were a different beast under Alex Neil, a manager with Championship pedigree, going unbeaten in their last 15 games to secure promotion. There are mixed opinions on their prospects, and the strength of their squad, but there's a nice mixture of skill and steel, youth and experience, and with a brilliant tactician at the helm, Sunderland should be able to establish themselves back at this level.
Last Season: Third in the Championship
It's hard not to draw parallels to Barnsley from 12 months ago. A Play-Off team losing their transformative manager and a few key players, and replacing them with cheap, unproven players... Carlos Corberan's assistant Danny Schofield will try to keep the good times rolling, but it's hard to imagine him providing the same level of coaching and detail. The Terriers have signed lots of players with potential, but will surely find reality much tougher this year - how far will they fall?
Last Season: 18th in the Championship
The award for most active summer recruitment goes to Cardiff City, who signed 11 players by mid July. Steve Morison is in a hurry to improve their fortunes, adding a lot of athleticism in midfield. Unfortunately, Cardiff look very light up front, and it's hard to see where the goals are coming from. As long as Morison has a good grip on things - and he appears to - they should be clear of danger.
Last Season: 16th in the Championship
Neil Critchley took a mid-table League One side and turned them into a competitive Championship outfit in two years. HIs departure has to be seen as a huge concern. Michael Appleton is experienced and has a good track record with young players, but his style is different to Critchley and may not suit this squad. If Josh Bowler stays at the club, they should have plenty going forward, but the concern is that they may lose some of that exceptional defensive shape
Last Season: League One champions
It seems like a case of 'stick with what you know' for League One Champions Wigan, who have kept the core of their title-winning team and so far only added one player, right-back Ryan Nyambe. It's a group of players that deserves a shot, having achieved a brilliant promotion last season - so hard to beat, so gritty and so capable of getting over the line when they needed to. That team spirit will serve them well in what's likely to be a scrap for survival rather than a dart at mid-table.
Last Season: Second in League One
Looking to break the sequence of three straight relegations, Rotherham were rocked by the departure of key men Smith and Ihiekwe to League One Sheffield Wednesday. The Millers have not sat on their hands, with reinforcements in defence and attack. They have (so far) succeeded in keeping their excellent midfield trio Barlaser, Rathbone, Wiles. But the source of goals is tough to confidently predict...
23. Birmingham City
Last Season: 20th in the Championship
It's another summer of uncertainty off the field at Birmingham City, with very public and unseemly discussions around potential investment. All the while, new manager John Eustace has to put a squad together without much help. Eustace has to be a good short term appointment, otherwise things could continue to spiral for a team that's finished between 17th and 20th six seasons in a row.
Last Season: 21st in the Championship
Reading are paying the price for years of excess losses, and have been put on a strict 'business plan' by the EFL that sees them shopping in the bargain bucket for much needed players. Paul Ince will attempt to build an 'us against them' mentality, but Reading's backs are against the wall and it will take some serious overperformance to save them.