Going all the way back to Joleon Lescott and Tim Cahill, to recent talents such as James Maddison and Harry Souttar, the Premier League has long cherry-picked the best players from the Championship and given them a bigger stage to shine.

Here’s five outstanding players who may be next to make the jump from the second tier to superstardom. 

Alex Scott (Bristol City)

A fee north of £25m will be needed to dislodge the brilliant teenager who has the attributes of a player ten years his senior. 

Excellent close control and a burst of pace has seen him stand out in the Robins midfield but it’s his composure on the ball, from one so young, and his eye for a shrewd pass that truly impresses. 

In his second full campaign in the West Country, Scott has amassed one heck of an honours roll, winning the club’s Player of the Year award as well as receiving the Championship Young Player of the Season merit. He has also been included in the EFL Championship Team of the Year. 

Viktor Gyokeres (Coventry City) 

The tall Swede recently switched agents, and with a year remaining on his contract, a departure from the Midlands feels inevitable, whether the Sky Blues get promoted or otherwise.

A highly notable 32 goal involvements across 2022/23 has made the striker hot property but it’s not just his goals and assists that have seen him linked with West Ham and others. His build-up play is astute and better than most.

Having learnt his trade with Scandinavian clubs even our comprehensive football prediction page doesn’t cover, the 24-year-old is now on the verge of reaping his rewards. 

Ryan Manning (Swansea City) 

Out of contract in the summer, the former centre-back has excelled for the Jacks as a left-sided wing-back this season and will surely attract serious interest from a clutch of sides that typically deploy three at the back.

Full of running and armed with a clever, accurate delivery when bombing forward, Manning has taken an unconventional route to this point, loaned out to Rotherham by his parent club QPR before moving to Wales without much acclaim. 

His positional switch however, has been the making of him and don’t be surprised if even sides featuring in the Champions League betting next term vie for a player who is a shoo-in to make the Championship Team of the Year. 

George Hall (Birmingham City) 

It feels unfair to bring up Jude Bellingham when highlighting Hall but the comparisons are there and undeniable.

Both came through Brum’s fine academy as athletic, box-to-box midfielders and even if Bellingham’s ceiling is higher, the boy from Redditch is also destined for the top with interest from Everton, among other, long standing. 

Even a spate of injuries have not prevented the teen from securing Birmingham’s Young Player of the Season award in what has been a breakthrough year. 

Gustavo Hamer (Coventry City)

Aptly it was the Brazilian-born, Dutch midfielder who scored Coventry’s sign-off goal of the season, apt because Hamer’s transition from a holding role to a box-to-box player has led to a quantum leap in development this term. 

Nine goals and the club’s Player of the Year award for his influential displays amounts to a job well done.

Now to complete the task and secure promotion with the Sky Blues or else, sadly, this ever-improving talent could be off.


Stephen Tudor is a freelance football writer and sports enthusiast who only knows slightly less about the beautiful game than you do.

A contributor to FourFourTwo and Forbes, he is a Manchester City fan who was taken to Maine Road as a child because his grandad predicted they would one day be good.