Ranking the 13 most expensive Championship signings on their impact this season

While Championship is still a long way off matching the eye-watering spending that goes on in the Premier League, there’s still been a fair chunk of cash splashed in the English second tier – mostly by Stoke City and Middlesbrough, if we’re being honest. While spending big has paid off for some, it’s failed to produce the desired outcome for others, with several signings unable to live up to their lofty fees.

By Richie Boon
Thursday, 18 April, 2019, 15:22
PRESTON, ENGLAND - APRIL 09: Patrick Bamford of Leeds United celebrates after he scores the opening goal during the Sky Bet Championship match between Preston North End and Leeds United at Deepdale on April 09, 2019 in Preston, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Here’s our run-down of how this season’s 13 most expensive Championship signings have fared...

On paper, bringing in a Croatia international with World Cup experience would be a solid piece of business for any Championship side, but Kalinic has failed to deliver the goods since moving to the Midlands. The January signing has struggled to assert himself as the top goalkeeper at the club, and has started just seven games since joining Dean Smith's side. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)
The most expensive signing in the Championship this season, 13.5m man Joao Carvalho hasn't had the impact expected of him at the City ground. He's been frozen out of the starting line-up by Martin O'Neil, and may even be pondering a summer exit if he can't convince his manager of his clear potential. (Photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images)
Afobe joined the Potters on a permanent deal from Wolves last summer, and has struggled to be the clinical frontman the fans have been crying out for. He's scored just eight goals all season, but is still rather tellingly his club's top scorer. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)
Like an over-excited player of Football Manager blessed with a sizeable budget, Stoke spent a tad rashly in the summer, bringing in a plethora of midfielders. Among them was 6.5m man Ryan Woods, whose initial loan spell was made permanent in January. The 25-year-old's lack of consistency has embodied his side's struggles, and has faced the wrath of the frustrated supporters on more than one occasion. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)
After being out on loan to no less than seven during his time on Manchester United's books, West Bromwich Albion finally took a gamble on him, following a fine campaign with Villa last season. Unfortunately for the Baggies, they're yet to see much of a return on their purchase, with the goalie keeping just eight clean sheets this season. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)
It's been a solid first season for the 23-year-old, who has adapted fairly well to the infamously combative Championship. Steve Bruce lauded the Nigeria international after his solid performance in the Owls' goalless draw at the bet365 Stadium last month, and he's looking a better player week on week. (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)

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Snapped up from Swansea City, Clucas started the season brightly, and had an excellent spell in early December - bagging a goal and three assists in as many matches. He's offered the Potters some real flair going forward, and his positional versatility has been a real blessing for his side. (Photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images)
Brought in during the January window to remedy Stoke's lack of firepower upfront, Vokes got off to a slow start, before succumbing to injury. Now he's back and ready to prove himself, the Wales international has looked a real threat in the penalty area, and provided both a goal and assist in the Potters' 2-2 draw with Rotherham. Expect the former Liverpool man to be hammering home the goals in the season's final run-in (Photo by Nathan Stirk/Getty Images)
While he - among scores of other young talents - failed to make the grade at Chelsea, Jack Saville is blossoming into a high quality midfielder. He joined Boro from Millwall last summer for 7m, and has proved to be a solid addition to his side's midfield. However, having racked up eight yellow cards, poor discipline has been a real issue. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
Arguably the club's most successful summer signing, Ince has started his Stoke career in fine fashion. He's contributed six goals and six assists to his side's endeavours, which, all things considered, isn't half bad! The highlight of his season has been his purple patch in the build up to Christmas, where he scored in three games on the trot. (Photo by Alex Burstow/Getty Images)
The Championship specialist has waited patiently for his chance to shine this season, and has certainly taken his chance while top scorer Kemar Roofe has been sidelined with a knee injury. He's chipped in with eight goals and two assists despite only making 12 starts - a cracking effort! (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
He may be somewhat of a footballing mercenary, but credit where credit's due: Grabban is nothing short of a goal-scoring machine. He's blasted in 16 goals and provided three assists since joining Forest last summer, and has given the otherwise underwhelmed supporters something to really cheer about this season. At just over 6m, that's some real bang for the club's buck, too. (Photo by Matthew Lewis/Getty Images)
Signed on the back of an exceptional 2017/18 campaign with Bristol City, Flint slotted straight into the Boro side, forming a rock-solid central defensive partnership with Daniel Ayala. While the club chances of making the play-offs remain on a knife-edge, their defensive efforts have been exemplary, and Flint's towering presence in his side's back line has seen his side concede just 36 goals in 42 matches. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)