Race to the Championship: Predicting the Premier League relegation run-in…
It’s the question on everyone’s (not strictly true) lips: who is getting relegated from the Premier League? We’ve completed an online soothsayer course to ensure we’re qualified to predict, with 100% accuracy, who is dropping into the Championship next season...
With seven gameweeks remaining – plus a bonus midweek round for a few clubs – it is already shaping into one of the closest relegation scraps in top-flight history. A whopping 11 teams are yet to reach the fabled 40-point barrier and just five points separate 13th from 19th.
Since the turn of the millennium, teams have stayed up with 39 or more points on all but two occasions – and given there are so many teams involved in this scrap, it is practically inevitable that three will fall below this mark. So the Eurosport survival quota is 39 points.
Firstly, both Bournemouth and Watford (on 36 points) have enough kind fixtures to survive comfortably, so there’s no need to suck them unnecessarily into our article. Brighton (34 points) aren’t quite as deserving of our kindness and are included. Oh, and to save us having to predict exact scores, teams level on points will be listed in joint positions – fortunately goal difference doesn’t affect our final standings.
CURRENT STATE OF PLAY
Gameweek 32: March 31 & April 1
- Crystal Palace v Liverpool: Liverpool win
- Brighton v Leicester: Brighton win
- Manchester United v Swansea: United win
- Newcastle v Huddersfield: Newcastle win
- West Brom v Burnley: Burnley win
- West Ham v Southampton: Southampton win
- Arsenal v Stoke: Arsenal win
Brighton close on the magical 39-point barrier, Mark Hughes marks his Southampton arrival with victory at a fuming London Stadium and West Brom… well... actually, let’s just relegate them right now. They don’t have a prayer. Happy for us to issue them 20th place? Good. West Brom are relegated.
Gameweek 33: April 7 & 8
- Bournemouth v Crystal Palace: Draw
- Brighton v Huddersfield: Brighton win
- Leicester v Newcastle: Leicester win
- Stoke v Tottenham: Spurs win
- West Brom v Swansea: Draw
- Arsenal v Southampton: Arsenal win
- Chelsea v West Ham: Chelsea win
Roll out the confetti (almost certainly not an actual phrase)… Brighton are staying in the Premier League! Their second straight victory – a winning run absolutely not fixed to reduce the amount of predictions needed – sees them hit 40 points.
Brighton's English defender Lewis Dunk (C) celebrates after scoring the opening goal of the English Premier League football match between Brighton and Hove Albion and Arsenal at the American Express Community Stadium in Brighton, southern England on MarchGetty Images
Gameweek 34: April 14-16
- Southampton v Chelsea: Draw
- Crystal Palace v Brighton: Palace win
- Huddersfield v Watford: Huddersfield win
- Swansea v Everton: Draw
- Newcastle v Arsenal: Arsenal win
- West Ham v Stoke: West Ham win
Crazy scenes! The gap between 13th and 18th is sliced to just three points, with Southampton dropping into the relegation zone. Stoke’s situation is properly desperate – they need to win all their remaining games just to hit the industry-recognised Eurosport survival quota of 39 points.
Gameweek 35: April 19-23
- Leicester v Southampton: Southampton win
- Watford v Crystal Palace: Draw
- Arsenal v West Ham: Arsenal win
- Stoke v Burnley: Stoke win
- Manchester City v Swansea: Man City win
- Everton v Newcastle: Draw
N.B. Huddersfield don't have a game
Stop it, Stoke! Paul Lambert's men (unbelievably, he's still in a job) tick off the first of four required victories, downing Burnley at the atrociously-named bet365 Stadium. Southampton climb into a share of 14th, meaning it's West Ham who finish a bumper weekend in the most turmoil after a pasting at Arsenal.
Bonus catch-up week: April 24 & 25
- Chelsea v Huddersfield: Chelsea win
- Swansea v Southampton: Draw
- Tottenham v Newcastle: Spurs win
- West Ham v Manchester United: West Ham win
N.B. Fixtures are not yet confirmed - but this is one available slot. Crystal Palace and Stoke City don't have games
No good predictions article is complete without a shock Manchester United defeat – rage incoming in the comments section in 3, 2, 1... – with West Ham proving the not-quite-giant-slayers on this occasion. The 18th position merry-go-round sees Huddersfield and Swansea claim joint honours. Only two points split 13th and 18th. What. A. Finish.
Gameweek 36: April 28 & 29
- Liverpool v Stoke: Draw
- Crystal Palace v Leicester: Draw
- Huddersfield v Everton: Draw
- Newcastle v West Brom: Newcastle win
- Southampton v Bournemouth: Southampton win
- Swansea v Chelsea: Chelsea win
- West Ham v Manchester City: Man City win
Stoke's quest for survival sees them earn a valiant point at Liverpool, but their top-flight dream is almost over as fans long for the glory days of Pulis and Delap. A wave of euphoria spreads across Newcastle and Southampton as they hear news that 39 is the new 40 and, according to us (and not pure mathematics), their Premier League status is confirmed for another year.
Newcastle United supporters celebrateGetty Images
Gameweek 37: May 5
- Bournemouth v Swansea: Bournemouth win
- Leicester v West Ham: West Ham win
- Manchester City v Huddersfield: Man City win
- Stoke v Crystal Palace: Palace win
DRAMA! West Ham and Crystal Palace retain their Premier League status as Huddersfield and Swansea both lose. The latter duo are left in a final day shootout as Stoke’s sorry season is finally signed off with a big ‘R’ for relegation.
Gameweek 38: May 13
- Huddersfield v Arsenal: Arsenal win
- Swansea v Stoke: Swansea win
|18th - RELEGATED||Huddersfield||38||35|
|19th - RELEGATED||Stoke City||38||31|
|20th - RELEGATED||West Brom||38||20 (...probably)|
It’s official: Huddersfield, Stoke and West Brom will be playing Championship football next season. It's heartbreak for the Terriers, who succumb to the bottom three at the final hurdle, as Swansea leapfrog them with victory over already-relegated Stoke. West Brom carry their consistency through to the end of the season, with their perfectly choreographed form reading: LLLLLLLLLLLLLL.
Dip your grubby hand into your pocket, take out your loose change and stick it on Huddersfield, Stoke and West Brom to get relegated from the Premier League. It's free money.