Contemplating The Long Drop




It hasn’t been the best of weeks for the English teams, has it? Spurs and Liverpool are out of Europe, Arsenal ensured that the return leg in Monaco is nothing more than an undeserved holiday and there’s more chance of Qatar hosting a World Cup that isn’t littered with corruption than there is of City beating Barca at the Nou Camp. So forget England’s big boys – instead, let’s look to the bottom of the table and review how the prime relegation candidates have done so far this season.

Leicester

Leicester may be bottom of the league, winless in five, with a manager whose hobbies include chokeslamming James McArthur and abusing his own fans, but they’re far from the worst team in the division. Week after week it seems that luck is against The Foxes, who have beaten United and drawn to both Arsenal and Liverpool. Even Harry “The Saviour of English football” Kane has only scored once past them this season – and if that isn’t Premier-League material then I don’t know what is. If Pearson tries anger management, Cambiasso continues to play like his former self and Vardy focuses on scoring goals rather than looking like some Geordie Shore reject then surely Leicester will have enough to close the four-point gap that they’re currently adrift by.

Villa

Next up, Villa. Oh, Aston Villa… Where to start? Tank Top Tim has taken the reigns of a quite frankly abysmal horse that seems to be blind, limbless and desperately handicapped in its race for survival. We all know the source of their problems: goals. What’s happened to Benteke? He’s gone from “he could win the Ballon d’Or” to “couldn’t hit a barn door” in a matter of months. Agbonlahor is English so we’ll let him off – but what’s Weimann’s excuse? Improvements are needed quickly at Villa Park otherwise Championship football beckons.

Burnley

Burnley are another one who seem too good to be in the relegation zone. Ings has just started to hit a bit of form, the team work hard and aren’t playing bad football, there’s no gaping hole in the defence, so where are they going wrong? Too many draws, perhaps (10). But this team finishing behind the likes of Villa and Hull this season… Next you’ll be saying that oh, I don’t know, Russell Crowe wants to buy Leeds United. Wait, what…?

QPR

Okay, we’ve all done it. It’s a Sunday morning, death is upon you from last night’s antics and the only thing worse than the chilling, damp weather and hideous pitch made up of exactly three blades of grass is the fact that you are playing some brutal-looking geezers. Consequently, you decide to use the old “I’m injured” tactic. Even the pros do it, as it appears that ‘Arry has deserted QPR for “surgical reasons” and left, in his absence, a team that has registered just one away victory all season – he truly has just sunk the ship and bailed. Rangers’ squad is good though, with the likes of the experienced Ball-Slapper Barton and goal-hungry Austin in there, but it’s goodbye Gary Lineker and hello Steve Claridge if they don’t start picking up points on their travels soon.


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