Top 3 Centre-backs in the Championship for 2017
The Championship tends to be full of very good defenders, many of whom end up playing Premier League football anyway and so more clubs should look to this division when signing new talent.
Lewis Dunk, Ciaran Clark and Jamaal Lascelles were all very good as their teams won promotion last season but didn’t play a full calendar year in this league which also applies to top performers from this season such as Curtis Davies, Conor Coady and Willy Boly.
The best three over the course of the full year for my money would be these three:
Aden Flint – Bristol City
The big man has now done it consistently over two seasons for Bristol City and rarely puts a foot wrong. He’s getting the recognition this season because of his club’s position in the league but in truth, he has been steadily improving for quite some time and is even a relatively prolific goal scorer to boot.
Flint should end up in the Premier League one way or the other but to see him play there with Reid, Bryan and Fielding to name three would be a thrill as they all deserve it.
Pontus Jansson – Leeds United
At Elland Road initially on loan, Jansson has been outstanding and the thing about him is that he has now consistently defended imperiously while playing under two managers (Monk & Christiansen) as well as with various central defensive partners.
Jansson could be top class and his giant frame makes him almost impossible to beat on set-pieces – attributes which have helped Leeds get to where they are right now.
Sol Bamba – Cardiff City
What if Bamba and Jansson could have played together at Leeds? Never mind! Bamba’s manager, Neil Warnock, believes he is a better out and out defender than £75million man Virgil van Dijk and frankly, I don’t disagree.
Bamba has now done it in 2017 with an underwhelming Cardiff side first and now with automatic promotion candidates, either way relentlessly just defending almost without fault and without fuss. The best in the business. I very nearly named Sean Morrison in the top three as well which pretty much shows you why Cardiff City are such a tough proposition this season.