You can look at the Premier League table over Christmas and seem sure you know who is going to be playing Championship football come the end of the season. It’s only now that you look at the table with a few games to go and realise teams that were towards the bottom of the table during the festive season could actually be comfortably in the top half given the amount of football that was still to be played.
That could have definitely been the case for a few teams, as the reality of relegation has seen teams kick it up a gear and play with a desire and hunger that has been absent all season.
Stoke managed to hold a Liverpool team that scored five against Manchester City and seven against Roma in the Champions League to a goalless draw. West Brom went to Old Trafford and won and followed that up with three points away at St James’ Park. It begs the question: where have these performances have been all season.
With two games to go, no team has been officially relegated yet and, for as many as six teams, it’s panic stations as the drop looms. West Brom, who have been regarded as good as relegated since January can still avoid relegation, even if it’s highly unlikely. The Baggies have managed to put off being the first team in the 2017/2018 season to be relegated but the inevitable could be confirmed when Spurs arrive at the Hawthorns on Saturday May 5th.
Pochettino’s men should read the last rites to West Brom, given only a win will do, but Darren Moore has the Baggies doing everything they can to pull off the great escape. There isn’t one team that is going down without a fight but a poor season will catch up with three teams, despite some last-ditch efforts to escape the clutches of the Championship.
West Ham and Huddersfield are on 35 points but the Hammers should be able to get to safety when they face Everton on the last day of the season. The Terriers won’t be sleeping well though and will hope 35 points will be enough, as their last remaining fixtures are against Man City, Chelsea and Arsenal.
Huddersfield boss David Wagner will be hoping his team also follow the trend and have a surge in performances so they can claim a big scalp. The West Yorkshire outfit are 6/4 to be relegated in premier league betting and the John Smith’s Stadium will currently be a tense place. Losing to Everton at home could have been the defining moment of their season.
So, who will be relegated from the Premier League in 2018? Swansea play both Stoke and Southampton in the run-in and that will go a long way in deciding. The Swans have the easiest fixtures, one might say, given they play two of their direct rivals and no one in the top half.
There’s a case for Southampton getting out of trouble as well – although, they have to entertain the champions on the last day of the season at St Mary’s. They will be looking to get four points from games against Everton and Swansea.
Given Huddersfield currently have the worst goal difference from 18 and above to 15th and the fixtures they still have to play, it looks like the Terriers will return to the Championship after a short stay in the Premier League. West Brom should accompany them and so should Stoke as they don’t have enough games to turn it around. Nevertheless, it will be tense for many fans.