Fixture Release Day is a big date in any football fan’s calendar. It’s the first date fans can put last season behind them and move on to the next.

Huddersfield Town will have to do just that with defeat to Nottingham Forest in the play-off final still fresh in the mind. The upcoming Championship season looks to be much stronger than the previous one and Town will need to be on it from game one if they are to replicate – or better – last season’s third-placed finish.

Huddersfield Hub sports editor STEVEN DOWNES runs you through the Town fixture list, giving his thoughts along the way. 

To many Terriers’ fans there’s disappointment they won’t be getting a Saturday 3pm kick-off for their opening game.

The gods of broadcasting at Sky TV have once again decided to show the Terriers on the opening weekend. Town will take on newly-relegated Burnley on July 29 which is a Friday night. Town have the honour of kicking off the new campaign in the glare of the TV cameras.

Usually it’s good to play a relegated side early because they won’t be used to the pressures of the Championship. The claret and blue Lancastrians have been out of the division for just under a decade.

In that time the Championship has changed, put into the mix that Burnley have a new manager in Vincent Kompany and Town could give them a shock. 

Second game up is the usual dull affair at Birmingham City before we face Preston in the League Cup first round. Other games in the month of August include Stoke at home, Norwich and Coventry away, before a home game against Steve Bruce’s West Brom.

Final trip in August is away at Bristol City where Nigel Pearson will be hoping to not make the same mistakes as last year, leaving the Robins too close to the red zone. 

September on paper looks easier – with three home ties the club could pick up some momentum. Games against Blackpool and Wigan could be ones to target, whilst the other is against Cardiff City. That could be a game where we see the Welsh wizard Gareth Bale. The only away trip this month is a visit to London and specifically QPR. 

October brings a bounty of points that could be picked up with trips to Reading, Luton and Rotherham in particular. Meanwhile home games against big-spending Hull, Chris Wilder’s Middlesbrough and the old ding dong match against Millwall could provide some tasty John Smith’s Stadium atmospheres.

November sees only three games before the stoppage for the World Cup. Town will take on Sunderland and Swansea with an away game at Blackburn Rovers in between. 

Hopefully through the following weeks England will do their thing and bring the cup home but let’s not hold our breath. We’ve only had 56 years of hurt. Cue the singing. But then again we never stop believing…

Back to Town and December (soon be Christmas, folks!) and this month provides two Yorkshire derbies against South Yorkshire opposition. The first one is a trip to Bramall Lane to have a chip butty. The second is at the end of the month at home to newcomers Rotherham United. We also face newly-relegated Watford this month and have a Boxing Day bonanza away at Deepdale, Preston.

Just a reminder here. It’s never too early to start your Christmas shopping. You’ll thank me later.

The New Year starts with a home game against Luton followed by trips to Hull and Blackpool. Going to Blackpool can be a nice day out at the seaside but not in January. Cheers, EFL. The month ends with a home game against Bristol City. 

February is a tricky month with away trips to Burnley and Wigan. Meanwhile home games against QPR and Birmingham should be winnable.

March is probably the hardest month of all with four games. Away ties at Millwall and West Brom, coupled with home games against Coventry and Norwich means Town will need to go into this month with momentum. 

April is packed with seven fixtures crammed into four weeks. Town, by this stage, should know what they need to do and let’s hope it’s not to need wins to survive. I don’t mean to be pessimistic but that’s in our nature, isn’t it? After the downs and ups of the last two seasons who knows what to expect?

May has potentially just one game against Reading at home. Unless…

As ever the old saying that ‘you have to play everyone twice’ will be bellowed clearly throughout Championship stadia but the rollercoaster ride is once again about to depart. And I’m not talking about Blackpool Pleasure Beach in January.

Whatever happens it’s going to be a strange season with a November break for the World Cup. It’s coming home. All aboard.