Premier League: 2018/19 Relegation Battle Heating Up
January 3, 2019
We are now 12 games into the 2018/19 Premier League campaign and the battle to avoid relegation is heating up. The three promoted clubs have struggled to inspire confidence this season but established top-flight sides, such as Newcastle United and Southampton, have also failed to build momentum.
Backing these Premier League regulars has been tough this year; most punters have needed to use acca insurance or similar tactics and promotions due to a few strange results.
Much of the early focus has been on the Premier League title race, with Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea all heading into the international break with unbeaten records. The fight at the bottom is equally fierce though, with just four points separating Newcastle in 14th and Fulham at the bottom of the table.
Ranieri To Lead Fulham To Safety?
It is official: Fulham have sacked Slavisa Jokanovic. The west London outfit moved quickly to appoint Claudio Ranieri as his successor and Fulham supporters will be expecting a quick improvement with the former Leicester City boss in charge.
On average, Fulham are conceding over 2.5 goals per game – you won’t win many Premier League games with a rate like that. Currently bottom of the table after just one win so far this season, Ranieri has a real job on his hands but if anyone can do it, it’s the charismatic Italian.
Odds: 4/7 to be relegated
Writing On The Wall For Huddersfield
Huddersfield were 15 minutes away from making it back-to-back wins in their most recent clash; a late West Ham equaliser stopping David Wagner’s men in their tracks. However, the Terriers will take confidence from those two positive performances and matched bets punters will be celebrating after a couple of unexpected wins.
The problem for Huddersfield has been scoring goals. With just six goals in 12 league games, Wagner’s side have failed to create enough scoring opportunities in the early stages of the campaign. Until they figure things out in the final third, Huddersfield will continue to struggle.
Odds: 4/9 to be relegated
Late Winner Will Give Cardiff Confidence
Sol Bamba’s injury-time winner against Brighton & Hove Albion ensured a slight change in mood down in south Wales ahead of the international break. Neil Warnock’s men have won two league games this season – both wins coming against relegation rivals.
As mentioned by Wales Online, the Bluebirds may need investment in one or two more players during the January transfer window in order to secure their top-flight status. Cardiff are lacking quality in key areas of the field but good fortune is an excellent trait to have when battling relegation and Warnock’s side have been lucky so far.
Odds: 4/9 to be relegated
Southampton Struggling In Final Third
Mark Hughes is on the verge of losing his job – Southampton have been one of the most disappointing teams to watch in 2018/19. With just eight goals scored in 12 games, only Huddersfield have a worse attacking record in England’s top flight.
Despite this, many believe that Saints will turn things around. As of November 14th, Betway have Hughes’ side at 4/1 for relegation this season. Whether that is down to a belief that the club will move on from Hughes or not is unknown, but the south coast outfit need a change or else the Championship will become a real possibility.
Odds: 4/1 to be relegated
No Wilf, No Wins For Crystal Palace
Crystal Palace’s record without Wilfried Zaha in the side is frighteningly poor. The Eagles are over-reliant on Zaha and supporters know it. Roy Hodgson’s side have struggled in his absence in recent weeks, losing four of their last five Premier League games.
Like Southampton, Palace’s woes stem from their lack of offensive prowess. Eight goals in 12 top-flight matches is a poor return, to say the least; Hodgson’s men need to put a run of form together ahead of the busy festive period. They aren’t one of the favourites to go down but it might be worth doing your research on the Eagles.
Odds: 9/2 to be relegated
Benitez Working Wonders At Newcastle
Newcastle were handed a tough start to the season by the fixture schedulers and we are starting to see a much more accurate representation of the Magpies. With seven points from their last three Premier League games, Benitez’s side are heading in the right direction.
With one of the weaker squads in England’s top flight, Benitez continues to work his magic. The lack of investment at Newcastle has been well documented but the Magpies have found a way to stay competitive and that is predominantly down to Benitez’s managerial style.
Odds: 7/2 to be relegated