The English Football League Championship (often referred to as the Championship for short or the Sky Bet Championship for sponsorship reasons) is the highest division of the English Football League and second-highest overall in the English football league system, after the Premier League. Each year, the top finishing teams in the Championship are promoted to the Premier League, and the lowest finishing teams are relegated to League One.
The Football League Championship, which was introduced for the 2004–05 season, was previously known as the Football League First Division (1992–2004), and before that was known as Division Two (1892–1992). The winners of the Championship receive the Football League Championship trophy, the same trophy as the old First Division champions were handed prior to the Premier League's inception in 1992.
The Championship is the wealthiest non-top flight football division in the world and the seventh richest division in Europe. With an average match attendance for the 2015-16 season of 17,578, the Championship ranked second after the German 2. Bundesliga as the most-watched secondary league in the world.
In the 2015–16 season, Burnley were the division champions, Middlesbrough were the runners up, and Hull City were promoted via the play-offs. At present, Ipswich Town hold the longest tenure in the Championship, last being out of the division in the 2001–02 season when they were relegated from the Premier League.Close