England's Relegation Battle deepens
When it comes to pure entertainment there is no other league than the English Barclay's Premier League. Much hype has been placed on which team will win the league or which ones will get the “golden ticket” of progressing into one of the two European competitions. But there is another race in England that just enthralls all who watch and especially the supporters of these clubs, the relegation battle. On this particular occasion nine Premier League clubs are fighting to avoid the much-dreaded drop into the Championship.
The difference between the Barclays Premier League and the English Championship is not only a tier system of the elite in England but it also comes down to economics. The teams competing in the top tier, the Barclays Premier League, make more money than teams in the Championship. Teams that place 18th, 19th and 20th in the Premier League drop into the Championship for the next campaign. Teams in the lower half of the Premier League table fight tooth and nail to avoid being relegated to the Championship.
This time in England places 12th through 20th are battling it out to avoid the drop back to the Championship. The twelfth placed club Everton is only three points ahead of 17th placed Burnley. Burnley in fact is only avoiding the relegation zone by a mere point, Hull City.
The teams that currently find themselves in the relegation zone are Hull City, Queens Park Rangers and Leicester City. As Drake would put it lets “start at the bottom,” Leicester City who currently sits in last in the table with 17 points has been facing a little revelation since the New Year. The Foxes currently are undefeated in their last four matches and they will be hosting Stoke City this Saturday. Queens Park Rangers on the hand have been on a run of dreadful form in their last three matches only picking up one drawing on the New Year against Swansea. QPR will be hosting Manchester United on Saturday at Loftus Road. The last team inside the dreaded relegation zone is Hull City; the tigers also have been going through a tough New Year. The Tigers have yet to gain a single point in their last three league matches. Hull City this weekend will be traveling to London to take on the highflying Hammers.
The group above the relegation zone should be keeping a watchful eye behind them. Three sides sit in 17th, 16th and 15th place each one with 20 points, Burnley, Sunderland and Crystal Palace. The newly promoted Burnley the next handful of weeks will be crucial. This weekend the clarets will be hosting Crystal Palace which will be a showdown for points as both sides need them to be clear of the bottom three. Burnley have been in a fine run of form recently too as they only dropped points away to city in a 2-2 draw and in another away match drawing to Newcastle United. The Eagles on the other side have just picked up a strong three points against the highflying Tottenham. The black cats of Sunderland will be traveling to London to face Tottenham Hotspurs.
Finally onto the last echelon in the Premier League table, which are still threatened by the possibility of relegation. West Bromwich Albion, Aston Villa and Everton all linger just barely above the drop zone. West Bromwich Albion will be facing Everton this weekend and both are craving points just to give them breathing space from the last three. The Toffees who will be entertaining the Baggies will be looking to get their season back on track since their recent exit from the FA Cup earlier this week to West Ham. Finally on to Aston Birmingham, Aston Villa will be playing against Liverpool on the weekend. Villa also among the fringe of relegation will need a result out of this weekend.
The relegation battle is one of the best things to watch in the English Premier League. Now since the league is past the halfway point the relegation battle has such depth that nine teams tango on that line. At the end of the campaign three teams out of these nine will find themselves playing in the Championship next campaign.