The Soccer Yanks are back to full monty status, Dave rejoins Dan for another week of dizzying football action: Liverpool's pivotal win over City, Chelsea is in the driver's seat of the big blue bus, underbelly of the beast bottom of the EPL, MLS continues to expand but not all expansion is created equal, and discussing Pep's Bayern and Pep's former Barcelona.
Newcastle have played 14 league games since we hammered a nine man Stoke City side 5-1 on Boxing Dayand ended a great streak of seven wins in nine league games, but we have taken only 10 points from those subsequent games, and that basically is relegation form. Alan Pardew has six games left to [...]
Every match matters in a Premier League season, and today's three matches are a perfect example of that. In the game between Liverpool and Swansea, you have one team fighting to avoid relegation while the other is bombing up the table to try to finish in the top four. Over at St James' Park, you have a club trying to gain respect after a turbulent season (and one where the manager could get sacked if poor results continue) versus a Villa club who are trying to avoid relegation.
Yesterday evening we witnessed Fulham's ignominious exit from the FA Cup at the hands of League 1 relegation candidates Sheffield United at Craven Cottage. Such was the despondency around the ground following the Blades' one hundred and nineteenth minute winning goal, there is now a genuine worry as to whether or not manager Rene Meulensteen will be able to rally his troops in a fight against relegation but what exactly is going wrong with a club that very few tipped for relegation this term?
West Ham have cancelled the players' Christmas party to ensure that moving away from the Premier League relegation zone has their full attention over the festive period. Captain Kevin Nolan has scrapped plans for the squad to fly to Dublin for a party. The Daily Mail reports that Nolan, aged 31, announced that the trip [.
Fulham have been down the road of fighting relegation before during their current 12 year run of Premier League football. However, it seems every time the Cottagers were threatened with relegation, something either miraculous happened, or the grit and commitment of the squad came through. The current group of players at Craven Cottage however seem to be a hodgepodge of malcontents from other clubs and run-of-the-mill chance signings that Martin Jol has put together, proving a radical departure from the formula that long worked for the West London club.
Alan Pardew has given a long interview to Sports Direct News, in which he goes into what Newcastle's priorities are for next season and in a nutshell they are to stay in the top half of the Premier League and avoid relegation that's basically what the Newcastle manager said. Alan Pardew - top [...]
It is almost impossible to believe that come June 1, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will be the fifth longest serving manager currently working in the Premier League! Rodgers will have been in the Anfield hot seat for one year but given the nature of the modern Premier League, he has overtaken 15 rivals in the [.
We're used to seeing fans moved to tears at the prospect of their team dropping out of the Premier League. But relegation doesn't seem to have hit this Wigan fan too hard. He's up for a laugh with fellow supporters. And is he asking that steward if he can head for the exit now the [...]
In May of 2009 with two games to go, we all thought we were sitting pretty in 4th bottom place, but above Hull City on goal difference, and we had just gained 3 points on Hull City when we beat Middlesbrough 3-1 at home on a Monday night. Alan Shearer couldn't save us four [...]
Sunderland and Stoke draw is good news for Arsenal by FD
This is a particularly unpredictable end of season at the bottom of the Premiership. Recent results have dragged teams who probably considered themselves out of danger only a few weeks ago back into relegation contention, and tonight's share of the points between Sunderland and Stoke City didn't help to make the situation any clearer.
1. David Luiz is trying to develop a tabloid persona as 'the Smirker'. 2. It's getting tight at the bottom. 3. 'Agh win it late, C!' is an appropriate anagram of Wigan Athletic after Callum McManaman's late winner against West Brom. 4. Indeed, it was a day for late lifelines at both ends of the [...]
Out of the seven Premier League matches today, six of them could have huge implications on the race for Europe and/or relegation. The only dead rubber is Fulham against Reading, where the fate of both clubs is already sealed.
Depending on your persuasions, the biggest matches of the day could either be the battle to avoid relegation (West Ham vs Newcastle, West Brom vs Wigan and Norwich vs Aston Villa) or the race to finish in the top four in order to qualify for the Champions League (Spurs vs Southampton, Swansea vs Manchester City, QPR vs Arsenal).
Steven Gerrard and Daniel Sturridge of Liverpool (Image via LFC Official Facebook)
In my weekly column on SWOL, I take a look back at the weekend's English Premier League and domestic cup action and the talking points that it throws up, as well as any significant news related to English football at large.
It's been huge news over the weekend that Liverpool can score goals without Luis Suarez, and that Newcastle United, who finished 5th last season and almost reached the semi-finals of the Europa League this season, could be relegated next month. Mike Ashley must be feeling anxious And we all know that could be the [.
It's almost that time of year again. Clubs at the wrong end of the table are starting to fret; supporters are getting anxious and take to Twitter. Managers' palms - well, of those managers who haven't been sacked - are sweating a little more ... The specter of the drop starts to loom, as the freshness of the early season is but a distant memory, long ago having given way to the reality of not having accumulated enough points.
Earlier today we brought you some entertaining pictures of David Luiz wearing a Chelsea Pensioner's outfit to his fancy dress birthday party. What we didn't realise at the time was that QPR goalkeeper Julio Cesar attended his compatriot's bash, presumably dressed as Luiz. That meant that, in the week that QPR virtually ensured their relegation [.
Jonas Gutierrez has been interviewed in the Daily Mirror and he says it's been his worst week ever, and the hammering by Sunderland last Sunday which shocked and angered Newcastle fans, was even worse than relegation four years ago. Jonas Gutierrez worst week ever at Newcastle The Argentine winger says he has stayed at [.
This was the worst possible result for Newcastle and the the 3-0 loss to Sunderland this afternoon does nothing for our relegation safety at all, and makes our goal difference a terrible -17. Papiss Cisse in action this afternoon This was the first Sunderland win against Newcastle since October 25th of 2008 our relegation [.
Everton take on Queens Park Rangers on Saturday in a must win game for both teams. Everton are six points off a Champions League place and need to win to keep up the pressure on the London trio above them while QPR, seven points from safety, need the points to keep alive their already slim hopes of playing Premier League football next season.
New Fulham manager Felix Magath says the club will avoid relegation this season. Speaking at his first press conference since replacing Rene Meulensteen, the former Bayern Munich and Schalke boss confidently predicted that the bottom-of-the-table Cottagers will escape the drop. He said: "Now we are in serious situation, sure, you know.
While I find David Conn's alarmist piece in today's Guardian excessively xenophobic and reactionary, the continued buying of English football clubs by American owners does pose larger questions long term.
Having bought teams that had this most previous season just avoided relegation, Randy Lerner (Aston Villa) and Ellis Short (Sunderland) have seen their sides continue to fight relegation despite large financial outlays on players.
It's a sad moment in a football club's 108-year history when they are relegated for the first time, and that's exactly what happened to Argentinean side, Independiente after their 0-1 loss to San Lorenzo last night.
The 'Red Devils' of Argentina, who boast former players such as Kun Aguero, Diego Forlan, Gabi Milito, Esteban Cambiasso,went downwith one match to go in the "Final" championship.
A 1-0 loss at home to San Lorenzo sealed Independiente's relegation to the second division for the first time in the club's history. With 16 Primera Division titles (the most recent coming in 2002) and a record seven Copa Libertadores trophies, the demotion is especially painful for Independiente, even if it was three years in the making.
Arsenal must beat Wigan but a win would help our rivals by FD
It does your head in. You've got twenty clubs each playing 38 matches over the course of a long Premier League season, and yet we always seem to arrive at the final stages of the campaign with the remaining fixtures contriving to throw up a set of possible permutations only an evil and twisted mastermind could have devised.
It may be a crucial game for Arsenal tomorrow in terms of reaching the Champions League, but for Wigan it is even more important as they are fighting for their Premiership lives. Roberto Martinez has performed miracles to keep them in the top flight over the last few years, and he is fully expecting to do the same thing this time around.
One match nearer, and it doesn't get any easier. After an uncomfortable evening watching Arsenal hold on for a crucial victory against QPR, thoughts turn to our next game when Wigan visit the Emirates.
At this stage of the season, it's all about getting the points, so I'm not going to get too concerned about performances.
Relegation has a habit of creeping up on you. Throughout the closing weeks of the season, the natural disposition of the football supporter is to look up the table, to calculate how many matches are going to result in three points, and often to studiously ignore the evidence of our own eyes. We know that the team has been out of sorts for most of the last eight months, but we hope amongst hopes that they will find reserves of something from somewhere and will manage to turn it around.
At least, for the supporters of AFC Wimbledon, the task ahead was clear. The way that the fixture calendar fell elsewhere meant that, even though they went into Saturday's final round of matches in League Two in one of the division's relegation places, a win at home against mid-table Fleetwood Town would ensure their survival at the end of a season which has proved to be a struggle for the club that took just nine years to proceed from the Combined Counties Football League to the Football League.
The following analysis is based on a hypothetical scenario that will likely never happen in Canada & the U.S. due to greedy people wanting to remain greedy, regardless how good for the game it could be. Here we are, the home stretch! The relegation battle is on!
MLS Bottom 4
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NASL Top 4
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Chivas is only 3 points ahead, but Toronto has a game in hand.
Newcastle are hoping to sign QPR striker Loic Remy on a season-long loan deal, according to reports in The Chronicle. The Magpies seemed destined to capture the Frenchman in January until the R's swooped in with a very attractive salary package to win the race for his signature. Relegation to the Championship means both club [.
Palermo president Maurizio Zamparini has conceded Josip Ilicic could leave the club after they were relegated to Serie B. The Rosanero lost 1-0 Fiorentina on Sunday to seal their demotion to Italy's second tier after nine seasons in Serie A. Their relegation has placed the futures of a number of star players in doubt, most notably Slovenia defender Ilicic.
Italian Serie A Relegation Clock Set To Countdown is a post from: Serie A Weekly Italian Serie A Relegation Clock Set To Countdown is a post from: Serie A Weekly We are heading into my favourite part of the season, the crowning of the Scudetto winner. In Italian Serie A four games remain from season end but odds are leaders Juventus should wrap up the title when they meet relegation candidates.
I must admit that I have not followed the Danish league in detail for ages. Living abroad, with plenty of work and with outstanding leagues to watch in South America, North America and Europe, the Danish league falls a bit in the background. And the fact that my favourite side, Brondby, has been at the bottom for a couple of years has not helped on the desire to follow the Danish "Super" league.