Div 1 opening day preview

Last updated : 08 August 2003 By Michael Morris
15.00 unless stated.

Bradford v Norwich
Burnley v Crystal Palace
Derby v Stoke
Ipswich v Reading
Millwall v Wigan
Nottm Forest v Sunderland (17.35)
Preston v West Ham (12.30)
Rotherham v Cardiff
Sheff Utd v Gillingham
Walsall v West Brom
Watford v Coventry
Wimbledon v Crewe

The new season kicks off at Deepdale, Preston at 12.30pm, live on Sky. West Ham begin their new life without Kanoute, Cole, Sinclair and all. The Hammers face a tough opening away at Preston.

The other former Premiership teams are also away. Sunderland face a huge game at Notts Forest, probably the pick of the day for the neutral. That game is also live on Sky at 5.35pm.

West Brom are the other relegated side, they face a Black Country derby at Walsall, good luck to the Baggies, they have to face the ardous task of getting from the M5 to the M6, only 4 miles apart in distance but a lifetime in the traffic.

Cardiff of course are at Rotherham, a game with a bit of spice after the Bluebirds have been tracking and Andy Monkhouse and are still in a potential situation with striker Alan Lee. Former City player Ronnie Moore manages the Millers who have amazed many by getting to Div 1 and managing to stay there for a couple of seasons.

Wigan are away at Millwall with the other promoted side Crewe, at Selhurst Park to play Wimbledon.

Amazing that the six promoted / relegated sides are all away on the opening day.