Shock relegation candidates

Discussion in 'Premier League: News and Analysis' started by Doctor Stamen, Jul 27, 2002.

  1. Doctor Stamen

    Doctor Stamen New Member

    Nov 14, 2001
    In a bag with a cat.
    Usually there is a team, maybe two who really gets stuck in the relegation battle, against all expectations. For example, Ipswich went down with ease, despite finishing 4th or 5th the previous season.

    My candidates are:

    Villa: They look a bit shaky in defence, quite ineffective in attack, and tactically suspect. Allback has to perform to his CM pedigree, and Vassell has to continue to perform as well as he did mid to late last season. Otherwise it could be a long, difficult season.

    Man City: All these new players have to click and perform, otherwise they may look like a group of individuals rather than a team. An example of this would be Boro during the Juninho/Emerson/Ravanelli period. KK also has a suspect temprament, and if they struggle, and they need to get a result in a derby.............

    Alternately, they may all fit together well, and storm the league. You can't tell, but I just have this feeling........

    Fulham: For all their big money signings, they were a fancy team with no cutting edge up front and little bite. More foreigners with a pretty good reputation have come in (e.g. Djetou), but they may not settle in. Seemingly another group of individuals, rather than a team.
     
  2. NNCRed

    NNCRed Member

    Jun 16, 1999
    Land-o-Spuds
    City going down a surprise? I think it would be a surprise if they stay up.

    I wouldn't be too shocked to see Villa down there, nor West Ham. And if Newcastle focuses too much on the CL, I could see them getting into an early hole.
     
  3. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

    May 2, 2001
    The Electric City
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    I wasn't that surprised by Ipswich, actually. They lost an excellent goalkeeper to Arsenal, and then Titus Bramble went down with an injury (and apparently ate the better part of a local supermarket while recovering). And there were other factors that made it apparent that they weren't likely to be playing in Europe for the 2002-03 season.

    Let's see: my choice for surprise relegation candidates... No one's mentioned Sunderland yet, so I'll go with them. If they don't figure out some ways to put the ball in the back of the net, it'll be a long year for the Mackems.
     
  4. benine

    benine New Member

    Jul 22, 2002
    Chicago
    my picks:

    Charlton, Man City and Everton.
     
  5. Footer Phooter

    Jul 23, 2000
    Falls Church, VA
    Well, Brmingham, Sunderland, and City will be going down this year.
     
  6. Clan

    Clan Member

    Apr 23, 2002
    1. Mackems...especially if Philips leaves.
    2. Spurs...to old.
    3. Toffees...no dept.
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  7. eric515

    eric515 Member

    May 8, 2002
    Atlanta, GA
    Club:
    Aston Villa FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Man U, Arse, Liverpool... :)

    Someone had to do it!
     
  8. NNCRed

    NNCRed Member

    Jun 16, 1999
    Land-o-Spuds
    Correct me if I'm wrong here, but didn't Sunderland barely stay up last season, fighting until the final day? How could it be a surprise that a team that barely stayed up last season will go down this season?

    I don't think they'll go down though. I think Reid will get axed by the end of January if things are going the same way they did last year. A new manager could turn their season around. The talent's there, the manager is an idiot though.
     
  9. Boro_lad

    Boro_lad New Member

    no surprises really...i thing the dirty mackhams....
    west brom (bit obvious) and charlton...i think they have out lived thier welcome. They never do anything. But i feel they will go down this year.
     
  10. sydtheeagle

    sydtheeagle New Member

    May 21, 2002
    Oxfordshire
    Can't say that I have much time for Charlton (as you say, the club nobody really cares about either way), but frankly they are not a bad little side and I don't think they'll be anywhere near the relegation zone. They're well managed, play to a system that maximises their abilities, have a couple of good young players, and remain under-rated (though on the evidence, it's hard to work out why) by many. Perhaps no better than a mid-table team, but for my money more likely to finish seventh than seventeenth.

    Disagree about Villa, too. Another team that won't set the world alight but Graham Taylor is a wily old bird who knows what he's doing with that team, and they are quite safe in mid-table if not slightly above. Can't see them setting the world on fire...can't see them struggling, either.

    WBA are indeed the obvious candidates, though up to a couple of weeks ago I was sort of hoping against hope that their no compromise approach might just see them through. However, they now seem to be doing a yeoman's job of shooting themselves in the foot and destroying precisely the one thing that did give them a chance...unity, committment, focus...before a ball is kicked. In light of what's going on there now, I'd say relegation certainties though I hope they prove me wrong.

    I think Sunderland's number is up, too. I was glad they stuck by Reid after the disastrous season they endured last year, simply because there's too little loyalty in the game and for that reason alone I still hope he can turn things around. But he has been unable to lift the club over the summer as far as I can tell, has made no new signings at a time when inspiration desperately needed to be brought in fresh, and as a result it is hard to see where the smiles will be coming from in Mackemland.

    I think Fulham could struggle if they fail to either buy or find in their ranks a serious striker. They have the capacity to be the best (most entertaining team) ever to be relegated. If you can't score...

    If there's to be a surprise struggler, my guess is it'll be Tottenham. Things there just don't feel right. I don't think the players they've brought in are the sort who will send them rifling up the league. Redknapp has a lot to prove, but from what my Spurs supporting mate tells me about pre-season, Acimovic is a joy to watch but couldn't tackle a question. When the going gets tough, not the sort of player I'd be banking on. They are old, their motivation is questionable, Hoddle clearly wants to rebuild the side but his hands appear tied, and their is disunity in the ranks (Sherwood/Hoddle and Pleat, etc.). All in all, not a good recipe for success.
     
  11. Doik natz

    Doik natz New Member

    Jul 14, 2000
    Somerset /London
    Charlton are a good team and will stay up, and in Alan Curbishley, they have an excellent manager. Everton look dodgey in terms of players but I rate Moyes to keep them safe.
    I think/hope:
    Boro- can't stand them, only Southgate and Ehiogu kept them up last season
    Man City - Can score, can't defend
    WBA - think too soon for them to be able to consolidate.
     
  12. Boro_lad

    Boro_lad New Member

    Boro will not go down. We had a bad year last year...but we have spent money and we will be pushhing into the top with ease i feel...hopefully europe...

    southhampton wont do very well though i think... they have bought no one and will start to go backwards if they dont...
     
  13. DennisM

    DennisM Member

    Dec 10, 2000
    Nya Sverige
    Well, Sunderland just barely stayed up so they would be an obvious choice. Also Everton hasn't impressed me in a while and I would say one of the other promoted teams as well. Charlton is a good team. They have no stars. They play well. No go-to goal scorers but they get the job done and they are well-run in a manegerial as well as a financial way.
     
  14. benine

    benine New Member

    Jul 22, 2002
    Chicago
    But they couldnt score shit last year and made NO moves over the summer. finished 14th (?) and will be losing Costa pack to Porto. Seriously, Charlton is the Cleveland Cavaliers of the Premiership; always forget that they even are there. Really, the best thing about the club is their ground, maybe the best midsize stadium in the league and should be the archetype of what MLS builds it's SSSs for. The Valley is rad.
    But then again Charlton could be the team that indirectly screws ManU. The final match day draw that kept united in 3rd and doomed them to qualify for the CL may come back to haunt us badly.
     
  15. Doik natz

    Doik natz New Member

    Jul 14, 2000
    Somerset /London
    Not looking great for us I admit, but we thrive on adversity. New signings are meant to be in the pipeline. I would have thought that a Boro fan more than most should know that £££ doesn't = success.
     
  16. Boro_lad

    Boro_lad New Member

    i know that...but last time with rav/jono and emmo we had a crap defence. This time we have built from the back...we will be a much better team than in 97
     
  17. NNCRed

    NNCRed Member

    Jun 16, 1999
    Land-o-Spuds
    I'm kind of surprised that nobody has mentioned Blackburn yet. Duff looks to be gone before the start of the season, which hurts the squad's depth. The biggest question that will have to be answered is if Cole and Yorke can have the type of production that they had together in United's Treble year. If they can come close to matching that form, Blackburn could be pushing for a European spot. If they fizzle out and fail, it could be a long year for Rovers and a huge burden could placed on Friedal's shoulders.
     
  18. Alex_1

    Alex_1 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Mar 29, 2002
    Zürich
    Club:
    Grasshopper Club Zürich
    Nat'l Team:
    Switzerland
    I don't see Villa going down really. Boring to watch, yes. But they still have enough talent within Taylor's system to make it work. I doubt they'll set the net on fire and impress, but then again, when do they ever? Just good enough to be mid-table finishers. Nothing more, nothing less.
     
  19. benine

    benine New Member

    Jul 22, 2002
    Chicago

    ah, at both ends of the field their very solid now. I dont think Duff is going to move, not for the money Blackburn are after and if they get Thompson, they could be up for better than mid-table.
     
  20. DennisM

    DennisM Member

    Dec 10, 2000
    Nya Sverige
    I don't know about Blackburn. Sure on the offensive side they may be in trouble if Duff needs and the "Soul Brothers" don't connect. However, their goalkeeper is pretty good and he won't be going anywhere any time soon. Now just need a little bit more help in front of the keeper.
     
  21. NNCRed

    NNCRed Member

    Jun 16, 1999
    Land-o-Spuds
    I'm just not a big believer in Friedal. Liverpool let him go for a reason, giving up some soft goals. Granted, he has improved since then, but I don't think that he will be able to carry the team if Yorke and Cole don't light it up, but that's a big if. It's a lot to ask of a keeper to have shotouts virtually every game. That might not happen if the Soul Bros. can score. Plus, Brad gives up a lot of rebounds in front of the net on shots instead of holding on to them or parrying them out for corners or out of the danger zone.

    All I'm saying is that Blackburn weren't that impressive to me last year and it wouldn't be a shock to see them fight the relegation battle. However, at the same time it wouldn't surprise me to see them fighting for a UEFA Cup spot.
     
  22. mik_smith

    mik_smith New Member

    Feb 5, 2001
    London
    This is a joke, right? Friedel carried the team for large parts of the year. Even people who believe that Keller is the better keeper (like me) can't argue that Friedel's not a very well-respected top-flight keeper.
     
  23. whirlwind

    whirlwind New Member

    Apr 4, 2000
    Plymouth, MI, USA
    While I agree that I'd like to see Brad hang on to the ball more often, to say he wasn't one of the best goalkeepers in the Premiership last year is ludicrous.
     
  24. mik_smith

    mik_smith New Member

    Feb 5, 2001
    London
    I think Tottenham could be a surprise. With an ancient strikeforce, Sicknotes 1 and 2, the beginnings of a player revolt, an absolute w***er as a manager, Poyet injured, and Terry Venables sniffing around, Tottenham has the potential to have a serious crisis.

    I think the real answer is that there are no surprises if any team outside of Arsenal, Chelsea, ManU, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle finds itself in a relegation struggle. If I'm not mistaken, there was a bigger gap between 5th and 7th, than between 7th and 17th last year.
     
  25. kygunner

    kygunner New Member

    Aug 12, 2001
    Winchester KY USA
    If ever there were a time to sack your manager it was Sunderland anytime after December 2001. It is hard to believe that a team with that much talent could play so poorly and it will equal their demise. The Cats also have decided or dont have the spare cash to bring any one else into the squad. If your team is bad you have to make changes and Sunderland have not made one.

    Charlton is another who finish 14th and feel that no changes need to be made. I dont believe they will make it all the way down but they should hover around the drop zone for much of the season.

    WBA would be no surprise to drop but they were given 10 million pounds for the promotion and have not spent any of it. Its getting kind of late if a team is wanting to find premiership quality players.
     

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