Sunderland, Hull City and Middlesbrough faced relegation to the second division last season, with each team having suffered from problems related to their overall performance. With the new season now up and running, we look at four teams that could face the unfortunate drop in May next year.
3. Huddersfield Town, Brighton Hove Albion
Going by historical evidence, new entrants Huddersfield and Brighton are both equally likely to go down to the second division in May next year. With a serious lack of grasp on the standards of football in the Premier League, both the clubs are bound to struggle to find their feet in the new environment. So, the best these sides can do to defend their status next season is to secure as many points from home games as possible.
On paper, Brighton have better chances of survival, thanks to manager Chris Hughton’s experience of having managed fellow Championship sides like Norwich and Newcastle United. Hughton was also the man who spearheaded Newcastle’s thumping comeback to Premier League in 2010.
A 16th place finish post an immediate return to the top flight is a clear indication of Burnley’s constant struggle to retain their Premier League status for a longer duration. A lack of significant transfer activity since Andre Gray can cost them this season as the Championship-esque squad is still in desperate need of strengthening, with players suited specifically to the Premier League demands.
1. Swansea City
After having managed to avoid the drop in the last three seasons, Swansea may not be lucky this time around. The Swans have not brought in any significant reinforcements in this transfer window in order to rectify their escalating defensive shortcomings, which let them concede a mammoth 70 goals last season.
To add to the fans’ frustration, the speculated transfers of Gylfi Sigurdsson and top scorer Fernando Llorente could really cripple the Swans as they have heavy relied on the two to bail themselves out. Manager Paul Clement will surely feel the pressure mounting if the Swans under perform in the first few games. So, who knows if he could face the sack anytime this season ?