Comments Off on Who’s for the drop in the Premier League?
As the Premier League season nears the Christmas period, we’re getting a decent idea as to how this campaign is shaping up. Much of the focus has been on the top of the league, where Leicester City have surprised everyone – including themselves – on their way to reaching the summit of the table after 15 games.
Meanwhile, reigning champions Chelsea’s title defence appears dead after already suffering eight defeats.
But as well as the top of the division, it looks as though we’re going to be in for another fierce relegation battle at the bottom of the league, with as many six or seven teams already being tipped to be in and around the drop zone come May.
So, as we close in on the midway point in the season, which club’s fans should be particularly worried about the prospect of relegation?
Aston Villa: After somewhat circling the drain for the past few seasons, it’s looking increasingly likely that this is the season that finally sees Villa drop out of the top flight of English football for the first time since 1987. Having guided the club to safety last season, Tim Sherwood paid the price for a dismal start to the campaign with his job.
Former Lyon head coach Remi Garde has taken over what has become something of a poison chalice. As short as 1/5 at the time of writing in the Premier League betting to be relegated, it would take a dramatic upturn in fortunes for Villa to produce yet another escape.
Sunderland: Ever since returning to the Premier League in 2007, Sunderland have failed to finish in the top half of the table. The past three seasons have yielded uninspiring and often plain terrifying 17th, 14th and 16th finishes respectively, and it could be even worse this year for the Black Cats.
Following Dick Advocaat’s surprise departure as manager, Sunderland hired Sam Allardyce, initially resulting in an upturn in form. But with just three Premier League wins to their name this season, there is a lot of work for this struggling squad to do if the club are going to turn things around this year.
And while we know it takes a lot to get Big Sam worried, anything other than a run of wins could have the new Sunderland boss beginning to panic.
Newcastle: This season’s issues haven’t come as a surprise to a lot of Newcastle fans but that hasn’t made yet another disappointing start to a Premier League campaign any easier to take for those loyal supporters. Having allowed Alan Pardew to leave for Crystal Palace last January, Newcastle fans were left frustrated by the decision to allow John Carver see out the season as head coach.
The appointment of Steve McClaren in the summer hardly inspired those supporters, and just three wins all season has only worsened the mood currently surrounding St James’ Park. Without those experienced Premier League players who can often be the difference between relegation and survival, another spell in the Championship could be on the horizon for Newcastle fans.