Villa 8-13 to secure Premier League place

Dreams will be realised and hearts broken this weekend as the English football season concludes with the EFL playoff finals.

Of the six competing teams - Newport,  TranmereSunderlandCharltonAston Villa and Derby - only Charlton are making their first visit to the new Wembley.

Aston Villa were there only last year, losing 1-0 to Fulham in the Sky Bet Championship playoff final, and they are 8-13 favourites to secure redemption by overcoming Derby on Monday.

The Villans have grown accustomed to Wembley heartache, losing on their last four trips to the national stadium, but they should return with a positive mindset, having excelled in the final two months of the season.

Classy attacking midfielder Jack Grealish has been instrumental in their revival but has Wembley demons to exorcise, having featured in their 4-0 loss to Arsenal in the 2015 FA Cup final and last season's playoff final defeat.

Villa boss Dean Smith has two key selection decisions to make, having to choose between Glenn Whelan and Conor Hourihane in midfield and Albert Adomah - who started the first leg of their semi-final - against West Brom and Andre Green - who started the second leg - on the right wing.

Derby are aiming to erase the heartache of their 1-0 loss to QPR in the 2014 second-tier playoff final.

Rams' manager Frank Lampard has known plenty of success in domestic finals, winning four FA Cups and two League Cups, and is 11-8 to lead his team to promotion.

David Nugent (knee) and Craig Bryson (ankle) look set to miss the final for Derby. Martyn Waghorn (Achilles) should be fit but Duane Holmes is an injury concern and Scott Malone is suspended. 

Sunderland are also seeking Wembley redemption in Sunday's League One final, having succumbed to Portsmouth in this season's EFL Trophy final, losing 5-4 on penalties.

They are 10-11 to get the better of Charlton, who finished three points above them in the table.

Sunderland's playoff final appearance against Charlton in the 1998 second-tier decider and has gone down in Wembley folklore.

After a breathtaking 4-4 draw, Charlton sealed top-flight status with a 7-6 penalty shootout success.

Twenty one years later they return the national stadium as a third division club and the Addicks are evens to take a step back up the ladder.

Tranmere were Wembley winners last season, defeating Boreham Wood 2-1 in the National League playoff final, and they are 5-6 to clinch successive promotions by overcoming Newport in the Sky Bet League Two showpiece on Saturday.

Amazingly, Newport have had more recent Wembley experience than any of this weekend's promotion chasers.

The Welsh side have played three times at the venue in the last seven years and they are 11-10 to clinch a League One berth.

Match in Focus

00:00 Tu 18Jun PREM

Japan v Chile

Home WinDrawAway Win
Key stats
  • Chile have lost only one of their last 12 Copa matches
Expert verdict
Japan haven’t performed up to their usual standards in recent internationals and they will need to up their game if they are to compete with two-time defending champions Chile. The Chileans are hard to trust entirely but recent results in friendlies suggest they should have enough to pinch victory.

 

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