7 English clubs in danger of the dreaded drop
Cape Town - Manchester City’s anti-climatic run to the Premier League title has thrown the spotlight on the bottom of the log with as many as seven clubs in danger of the drop.
City’s record-breaking run to the top coupled with the top four battle all but sorted means the remaining two match-weeks are all about who goes down.
Bottom of the pile West Brom must be pencilled into one of the three spots with only two games remaining for them. Only a mathematical equation that Einstein would be proud of gives them a glimmer of hope but that will be extinguished if they lose to Spurs at home.
With the Baggies out of the way, Stoke on 32 points could overhaul 15th-placed West Ham, who have 35 points. Huddersfield, Swansea and Southampton are all sandwiched in between them and looking for a win and a top-flight lifeline.
The team breathing the biggest sigh of relief is none of the sides named already but rather Brighton, who face both Manchester sides and Liverpool in their remaining games. Despite not having reached the mythical 40-point safety mark they should stay up.
Who then will join West Brom in the Championship next term?
One of the two, or even better yet both, will come from the loser of Tuesday’s Swansea v Southampton “thriller”. Both have little to no form to write home about and both are away this weekend. It’s the proverbial relegation six-pointer but with a twist, a draw could see neither “kissing their sister” but rather kissing Premier League status goodbye.
As you might’ve already deduced, relegation in the Premier League is no simple equation with the solutions taking longer and longer to work out. There’s every possibility that this “class” will have to reconvene for another permutations crash course ahead of the final day of the season.
That day will also see Stoke away to Swansea; as far as entertainment goes, you can’t make this up.
Back to “who will go down, who won’t” and Huddersfield will need some favours from above as they travel to face the league champions, the 2017-18 champions Chelsea before hosting Arsene Wenger in his final Gunners bow.
There’s every possibility, mathematically or otherwise, that they won’t add to the 35 points they have as it stands.
West Ham are on the same mark as Huddersfield but have a superior goal difference which is likely to keep them afloat one more time.
With literally hundreds of millions of pounds on the line, expect all six relegation-threatened clubs to produce the kind of football that Barcelona would be proud of as they look to escape the doldrums that lie beneath England's’ top tier.
It looks like West Brom and Stoke are finished with Huddersfield left hoping Swansea v Southampton fails to spark the odd goal.
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