sport news Sportsmail looks at things to look out for in the Championship play-offs

The battle to reach the Premier League moves up a notch this weekend as the Championship play-offs finally get underway on Saturday.

Aston Villa host West Brom in the first-leg of their semi-final before Leeds travel to Derby in the second game of the day.

With just one place in the Premier League up for grabs and four teams set to fight tooth and nail for it, Sportsmail looks at some of the things to watch out for in the Championship play-offs. 

Four teams are fighting to reach the Championship play-off final at Wembley on May 27

Four teams are fighting to reach the Championship play-off final at Wembley on May 27

CHAMPIONSHIP PLAY-OFF DATES 

May 11: Aston Villa v West Brom (12:30)

May 11: Derby v Leeds (17:15)

May 14: West Brom v Aston Villa (20:00)

May 15: Leeds v Derby (19:45)

May 27: Championship play-off final, Wembley (15:00)

Managerless West Brom

The Baggies have occupied one of the play-off positions for most of the season but a draw with Ipswich back in March saw Darren Moore brutally sacked with his team fourth and nine points off the automatic places.

Jimmy Shan was put in charge as caretaker boss but finds himself still in charge two months on. The 40-year-old has been awarded the job until the end of the season, when a permanent replacement will be sought.

Shan has overseen six wins in 10 games in charge and there would be no greater claim to the job on a permanent basis than leading them back to the Premier League.

Jimmy Shan was put in charge as caretaker boss in March but finds himself still in charge

Jimmy Shan was put in charge as caretaker boss in March but finds himself still in charge

Lampard's first play-offs

There was scepticism when the relatively inexperienced Frank Lampard was handed the reigns at Derby last summer over whether he could deliver top flight football to the club after several near misses.

However, he assembled a vibrant young squad including Harry Wilson and Mason Mount and has impressed in his first season in the dugout as the Rams secured their place in the play-offs with a final day victory over West Brom.

The Chelsea legend's managerial capabilities will be tested over the coming weeks but if he can guide them successfully through to the top flight then the Chelsea job he has been linked with before may be his sooner than we expected. 

Frank Lampard assembled a young squad and led the Rams into Premier League contention

Frank Lampard assembled a young squad and led the Rams into Premier League contention

Villa's incredible run 

Dean Smith took over at Villa Park in October and completely turned their season around. They secured their finish in the play-offs with a record-breaking victory against Millwall in April. 

Unfortunately Villa surrendered their 12-match unbeaten run, which featured a 10 game-winning streak, against eventual champions Norwich last weekend, although they did rest some key players.

Despite their recent incredible run, Villa failed to win either of their two meetings against West Brom this season and finished four points behind the Baggies in the table. 

Villa surrendered their 12-match unbeaten run against eventual champions Norwich on May 5

Villa surrendered their

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