Championship 2018-19: When does it start, opening weekend matches & how to stream

The second-tier English league is about to start and here’s everything you need to know ahead of the opening weekend

The 2018-19 season is upon us and the Championship kicks off at the start of August, a week prior to the Premier League season. 

This year the deadline day has been brought forward across all English leagues to coincide with the first week of the top flight campaign, meaning there will be a few days after the first Championship matchday when clubs can still sign players.

Goal has all the information including the opening weekend fixtures and how to watch it. 



The new Championship campaign is set to begin on Friday, August 3 at 8pm BST, between Reading and Derby,

The rest of the fixtures take place across the weekend, the highlight of which will be Leeds United versus newly relegated Stoke Coty, and the final game of the matchday will be between Hull City and last year’s Championship play-off final losers Aston Villa on Monday evening. 



Date Fixture Time (BST) Venue
Aug 3 Reading v Derby County 8pm Madejski Stadium, Reading
Aug 4 Birmingham City v Norwich City 3pm

St Andrew’s, Birmingham

Aug 4 Brentford v Rotherham United 3pm

Griffin Park, London

Aug 4 Bristol City v Nottingham Forest 3pm Ashton Gate Stadium, Bristol
Aug 4 Ipswich Town v Blackburn Rovers 3pm Portman Road, Ipswich
Aug 4 Millwall v Middlesbrough 3pm The Den, London
Aug 4 Preston North End v Queens Park Rangers 3pm Deepdale, Preston
Aug 4 West Brom v Bolton Wanderers 3pm Hawthorns, West Brom
Aug 4 Wigan Athletic v Sheffield Wednesday 3pm DW Stadium, Wigan
Aug 4 Sheffield United v Swansea City 5:30pm Bramall Lane, Sheffield
Aug 5 Leeds United v Stoke City 4:30pm Elland Road, Leeds
Aug 6 Hull City v Aston Villa 7:45pm KCOM Stadium, Hull

The Championship begins with an opening match between Reading and Derby County on Friday August 3, at Madejski Stadium. Derby will be hoping to redeem themselves after finishing sixth last season but missed out on promotion after losing to play-off winners Fulham. 

Newly relegated side West Brom take on Bolton Wanderers, while Leeds take on Stoke under new management of Gary Rowett after the departure of their manager at the end of last season.

Aston Villa will be looking to make a push for the Championship title after being runners-up during the play-off finals, but there’s a huge financial cloud hanging over the club that threatens to derail their season.



Sky Sports have the rights to the Championship in the UK this season and will be broadcasting games on their Sky Sports Football channel. They can also be streamed via Sky Go.

UK TV channel UK online stream
Sky Sports Football Sky Go

If you live outside of the UK, you will be able to stream all of your club’s non-televised matches live through the Football League’s iFollow service.

A full list of every televised Championship game confirmed for the 2018-19 season until the end of October is below.

Date Fixture Coverage start time (BST)
Aug 3 Reading v Derby County 7pm
Aug 4 Sheffield United v Swansea City 5:15pm
Aug 5 Leeds United v Stoke City 3:30pm
Aug 6 Hull City v Aston Villa 7pm
Aug 7 Nottingham Forest v West Brom 7pm
Aug 11 Derby County v Leeds United 5:15pm
Aug 17 Birmingham City v Swansea City 7:30pm
Aug 18 Preston North End v Stoke City 5:30pm
Aug 21 Swansea City v Leeds United 7:30pm
Aug 22 Aston Villa v Brentford 7:30pm
Aug 24 Middlesbrough v West Brom 7:30pm
Aug 25 Nottingham Forest v Birmingham City 5:15pm
Aug 31 Leeds United v Middlesbrough 7:45pm
Sept 1 Millwall v Swansea City 5:30pm
Sept 14 Birmingham City v West Brom 7:45pm
Sept 15 Blackburn v Aston Villa 5:30pm
Sept 18 Stoke City v Swansea City 8:00pm
Sept 19 Queens Park Rangers v Millwall 7:45pm
Sept 21 Wigan Athletic v Bristol City 7:45pm
Sept 22 Queens Park Rangers v Norwich City 5:30pm
Sept 28 Sheffield Wednesday v Leeds United 7:45pm
Sept 29 Rotherham United v Stoke City 5:30pm
Oct 2 Ipswich Town v Middlesbrough 7:45pm
Oct 3 Sheffield Wednesday v West Brom 7:45pm
Oct 6 Bolton Wanderers v Blackburn Rovers 5:30pm
Oct 23 Norwich City v Aston Villa  7:45pm
Oct 24 West Brom v Derby County 8:00pm

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