The Championship play-offs in England are a series of knock-out games which take place at the end of the Championship season in order to determine which team earns the final promotion to the Premier League.
While the top two teams in the division earn automatic promotion, the teams which finish third, fourth, fifth and sixth qualify for the play-offs.
The Play-offs as a merit-based system is in place to pair the Semi-final opponents, with third place team playing sixth place team in one semi-final and fourth place team playing fifth place team in the other semi-final.
The Championship semi-finals are two-legged affairs, but the away goals rule is not applicable. The two winners of the semi-final progress to the Play-off Final and the winner gain promotion and join the two automatic qualified teams from the championship into the Premiership League.
Leeds United became the first side to win automatic promotion when West Brom lost to Huddersfield on July 17, with Marcelo Bielsa’s side crowned champions a day later following Brentford‘s loss to Stoke City.
West Brom join them in the Premier League after securing promotion on the final day of the season with a 2-2 draw against QPR.
Brentford and Fulham have to settle for places in the play-offs having challenged the top two for most of the campaign.
They are joined by Welsh rivals Cardiff City and Swansea City, with Nottingham Forest narrowly missing out on a top-six finish.
The result of the Play-offs 1st leg Semi Final played yesterday (26/07/2020) is Swansea City 1 vs. Brentford 0, while the 2nd match between Cardiff City vs. Fulham will be played today (27/07/2020). While the 2nd legs will be played on 29/07/2020 and 30/07/2020 respectively.
With the Championship returning at the end of June, the play-off semi-finals will now be played at the end of July. First legs will be played on July 26 and 27 with the second legs taking place on July 29 and 30.
This year Championship Play-off Final is scheduled for Tuesday 4th August, 2020. It had originally been booked for Monday, 25th May, 2020.
Since the game is being played in mid-week, it will kick off at 7:45pm rather than the usual afternoon kick-off time associated with weekend play-off finals.
Wembley Stadium in London is the traditional venue for the match. Wembley is used for all EFL play-off finals with those for League One and League Two also taking place at the venue.
Affectionately known as ‘The Home of Football’ in England, Wembley is one of the biggest stadiums in the world and Championship play-off finals regularly attract bumper crowds.
The 2019 Championship play-off final between Aston Villa and Derby County, for example, drew an audience of 85,826, but this year edition will be played in an empty stadium due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
Aston Villa won the 2019 Championship Play-offs after a 2-1 victory over Derby County.
Goals from Anwar El Ghazi and John McGinn either side of half-time were enough to see Villa to victory over the Rams, who threatened a comeback late in the second half when Jack Marriott found the net.
Villa overcame West Brom in the semi-final to book their place in the final of the play-offs, while Derby defeated Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United – a team that had been fancied to win the division.
It was the Birmingham club’s second successive appearance in the play-off final, having lost the 2018 edition 1-0 to Fulham