What are Derby County's chances of winning the play-offs having finished sixth?

The odds are against Derby County winning the play-offs.
The odds are against Derby County winning the play-offs.

Derby County will go into the play-offs this weekend with a tough task on their hands as they play Leeds United.

Leeds finished third, nine points ahead of the Rams, meaning they will get home advantage for the second leg next Wednesday night.

But is being the best placed play-off competitor in the Championship always the advantage it's cracked up to be?

OddsMonkey has looked back through the history of play-offs and the bad news for Derby fans is that finishing third in the Championship actually is the best place to finish.

Looking back, nearly 40 per cent of all promoted teams from the play-offs have finished third, with the next best being fifth at 26 per cent.

Last season it was Fulham who were promoted and they indeed finished third.

Of the four teams to have made it though, it is only sixth placed Derby who have won the play-offs before, back in 2007.

OddsMonkey spokesman Peter Watton commented: “Leeds will obviously still be gutted about missing out on the top-two but as our research shows, finishing third is a pretty good omen.

“Indeed Bookmakers are favouring Marcelo Bielsa’s sides to come through and are 9/5 although Aston Villa – who finished fifth and lost last year’s final - are just 2/1 to go one better and return to the top-flight.”

Selected Championship play-off odds:
Leeds – 9/5
Aston Villa – 2/1
West Brom – 7/2
Derby – 9/2

Odds correct at the time of writing.