Everything You Need To Know About The Championship Play-Off Final

Coventry meet Luton for a spot in the Premier League
09:00, 27 May 2023

Coventry City take on Luton Town this weekend at Wembley for a place in the Premier League in what is the ‘richest game in football’. Both clubs have enjoyed a phenomenal rise in recent years with the Hatters climbing up from the fifth tier and the Sky Blues rising from the fourth tier. Without parachute payments, the two clubs have fought against the odds to make it to this stage, and no matter who wins, they will have completed a remarkable comeback.

Here’s everything you need to know about the nerve-shredding Championship play-off final.

What time is kick-off?

4.45pm at Wembley Stadium.

How can I watch? 

The game is sold out but live on Sky Sports Main Event from 4pm.

How much is it worth?

According to Deloitte Sports Business Group, winning this game is worth at least £170 million across the next three seasons. This figure could rise to more than £290m if the club avoids relegation, as the three promoted clubs did this season after their first season in the Premier League. Meanwhile, one season in the Premier League is estimated to bring additional revenues of at least £90m.

Is there VAR?

Yes. Despite not being used in any of the other 1,668 games in the Football League this season, VAR is being used at all three play-off finals. It was in use last year in the final but Huddersfield Town will attest that it didn’t help them out as two penalties were turned down despite protests. 



What happened in last year’s final?

Nottingham Forest beat Huddersfield Town 1-0. An own goal from Levi Colwill decided a tense affair as the Terriers were denied two penalties. To show the clear difference this game can make, you just have to look at the summer transfers following that final. Town lost their two star players to Forest and spent just £1m in an attempt to replace them, while Forest spent £145m in their successful bid to stay in the Premier League. 

The Terriers had to rely on Neil Warnock to save them from relegation to League One while Forest are preparing for another season amongst England’s elite. Then when you take into account the fact that parachute payments can support the club even after relegation, you realise how much this game matters. 

How did they get here?

Luton Town overcame Sunderland in their play-off semi-final having lost the first leg at the Stadium of Light. However, they turned it around with two set piece goals at Kenilworth Road to book themselves a spot at Wembley and gain some sort of closure on their play-off semi-final defeat to Huddersfield this time last year. Despite all the talk of the importance of Kenilworth Road, Luton have got the second best away record in the league and finished ten points above Coventry. 

Meanwhile, the Sky Blues caused a shock as they got past much-fancied Middlesbrough at the Riverside. Having drawn 0-0 at the CBS, many thought Michael Carrick’s men would cruise through, but a Mark Robins masterclass and a Gustavo Hamer goal earnt City a 1-0 win.

How did they get on against each other this season?

Nothing to separate them. Nathan Jones’ Luton drew 2-2 against Coventry at home, before they drew 1-1 at the CBS Arena in February. 

Which team are the favourites?

Betfred have priced Luton Town as the favourites at 6/4 to win in 90 mins, while Coventry are 21/10. 

*18+ | BeGambleAware

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