Let’s talk about relegation, shall we?
Amidst the focus being shifted back on Manchester City about to the Premier League yet again, the low-key status of relegation is as eye-catching. Only four points separate the bottom six teams and any three of Everton, Nottingham Forest, Leeds United, Southampton, West Ham, and Leicester can be demoted. Six big names. I repeat, six big names not fighting for a top 10 finish but struggling to get their name out of the bottom 3.
Teams and their remaining fixtures:
West Ham: Manchester United (H), Brentford (A), Leeds (H), Leicester (A).
Leicester City: Fulham (A), Liverpool (H), Newcastle (A), West Ham (H).
Leeds United: Newcastle (H), West Ham (A), Tottenham (A).
Nottingham Forest: Southampton (H), Chelsea (A), Arsenal (H), Crystal Palace (A).
Everton: Brighton (A), Manchester City (H), Wolves (A), Bournemouth (H).
Southampton: Nottingham Forest (A), Fulham (H), Brighton (A), Liverpool (H).
Looking at those fixtures one would say that West Ham stands the least chances of getting relegated as they will be facing Brentford, Leeds and Leicester in their last 3 games. Three teams that David Moyes will pick to play out of the 20. On paper Hammers do look like the stronger side but they are not the same they were last season. We can easily expect them to choke a game or two but finishing in the bottom three is still unlikely.
Dean Smith’s Leicester are on a winning momentum having won their last three games. Players like Soyuncu and Tielemans have gotten their legs together and have started showing their worth. They stand alongside Leeds and Forest, stuck on 30 points and only one ahead of Everton with 29.
Southampton who stand last with 24 points are “favourites” to be relegated. The term that they would not want to be associated with. The Saints fam would rather want to enjoy the Championship next season where they will surely win more than 6 games and let the winning chants echo around St Mary’s Stadium. It is very important for the young players of Southampton to realise what winning feels like and develop that winning mentality.
Apart from Southampton, Leeds United and Everton look likely to finish at the bottom of the table considering the matches they have left. Everton have lost two and drawn two of their last four games and are likely to hold the “losing momentum” as they will travel to hefty Brighton and host invincible Manchester City.
Having lost to Manchester City in their recent encounter Leeds too have slimmed their chances of playing Premier League next season. They have shown glimpses of being a team capable to win but what they lack is consistency.
We still can not confirm the last three but what we are assured of is the drama to unfold; as good as the fight for the title.