Saturday, 23 May 2009

Does anyone want Premier League safety?

So the final day is to be labelled ‘survival Sunday’ and for fans of Middlesbrough, Newcastle, Hull and Sunderland, it will be an afternoon packed full of tension.

For Hull and Sunderland the outlook is simple; win your game and you’re safe. For Newcastle and ‘Boro, they are in that uncomfortable position whereby by their fate is not in their own hands.

But they should be thankful they have a chance of staying up on the last day, their recent form doesn’t suggest they deserve it.

It seems to me that none of the four teams are showing the battling qualities required to stay up. They have a combined total of just three wins between them in their last eight games and a total of 16 points gathered - hardly the sort of form that will drag you out of trouble.

Hull’s downturn is perhaps the most spectacular. Sixth at Christmas and a chairman talking of European competition, just one win since the turn of the year has seen them nosedive. Sunderland had a brief flurry of form when Ricky Sbragia took charge but once the honeymoon period came to an end they limped towards the finish line. They have had numerous chances to grab the one win they need to secure survival but have failed to take it - they may have just sleepwalked into the relegation trapdoor.

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