Premier League’s bottom three set for ruthless relegation battle
The Premier League’s current bottom three sides face a long and ruthless relegation battle, going into the final five months of the campaign.
Crystal Palace (13/8 with Coral to be relegated), Burnley and Leicester City are all involved in a heated scrap to stay in England’s top-flight but, based on this season’s performances so far, it doesn’t look promising for those stuck in the drop zone.
Coral take a look at what each of the bottom three teams need in order to stay in the Premier League for another term.
The Eagles are currently holding the final relegation spot, ahead of Burnley only on goal difference, but have been boosted by the recent capture of Alan Pardew, who replaces Neil Warnock as manager at Selhurst Park.
Pardew faces a tough task, as Palace are without a domestic league victory since their 3-1 triumph over Liverpool in November. It’s clear that the relegation strugglers have a problem with closing out games and lack a killer instinct in front goal, becoming one of the league’s draw specialists.
Palace have taken a point in four of their last six league outings in all competitions, failing to score in four of those fixtures. With the January transfer market open, the new boss should look to bring in a clinical centre forward, with strikers Fraizer Campbell, Marouane Chamakh and Dwight Gayle netting only six times between them this season.
Having drawn eight times in the league this campaign, the joint-second most, the Eagles will need a prolific striker in order to soar from the drop zone.
Sean Dyche’s side, like Palace, have struggled to kill off games having drawn eight times this term. The Clarets have won only once in their previous eight Premier League matches, on their way to 19th in the table.
Burnley have the worst goal-difference in this season’s top-flight, something which may prove fatal when the campaign draws to a close in May. Dyche must look to strengthen his back line, while also adding to the list of strikers in his squad, with a genuine lack of firepower clearly evident.
Dyche’s Clarets have the second-worst attacking record this term, ahead of only Aston Villa, striking just 17 goals on their way to the drop zone. At the back it hasn’t been much better, with 32 being leaked, the fourth worst defensive record.
For Burnley to stay in the Premier League, Dyche will need to reassure both his attacking and defensive options, ahead of a long season finish.
Nigel Pearson’s men have had an appalling campaign so far, losing on 12 occasions on the path to rock-bottom of the table. Pearson’s hapless outfit looked to have turned a corner with a recent victory over Hull City, following up an impressive win over the Tigers with a 2-2 draw at Anfield.
However, before picking up four points from two games, Leicester had went 13 without a victory, including 11 defeats.
Holding the worst defensive record in the top flight, the Foxes will need some stability in defence in order for to claw their way out of an immediate return to the Championship, and are odds-on 8/15 to be relegated.