Remember the ‘good ole days’ when the recently promoted teams were so happy to be in the Premier League that they pratically laid down in surrender for most of the season and you could count on 7-9 points from them each year?  If you do have memories of those times and cherish them, I hope you have pictures and video cause those days are gone forever!  Teams now realizethat if they survive the first year in the Premiership, they will come into a ton of money (due to the new TV contract), which, if used wisely, can put them on par with most (if not all) of the teams in the league.  This is a paradigm shift in the order of things and may take years to sort out.  Other teams in the Championship can see the success of teams like Watford and Leichesterand I bet the Championship will have an influx of young, technically astute managers and cease to be a wading pool for failed Premiership managers.  I also think that the weak sisters of the Premiership will be regulated quickly and disappear from the news as getting promoted from the Championship becomes harder than staying up in the Premiership.  Times are changing and it will be interesting to see what happens to the “Big Four” or if there will even be a Big Four!


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In the past I always hoped we would avoid fixtures against the promoted teams during the first few weeks of the season when they were still on a high from getting promotion. After that it was usually 3 points. I agree Sage that recently promoted clubs have been doing really well. I guess Clubs like Sunderland, Newcastle and Villa are feeling really desperate because the financial implications of relegation do not bear thinking about. Just think of the problems that huge clubs from the past like Leeds United and Sheffield Wednesday have had not just in gaining promotion but simply surviving in the Championship. If you get relegated with a huge wage bill you are in trouble and it isn’t always easy to offload your big wage players. Some clubs have relegation clauses in player’s contracts but I read today that many teams don’t. Personally I’d be sad if the three teams currently at the bottom are relegated as they are traditional clubs with great support but I wouldn’t be surprised if we lose all three – the times they are a changing.


All to do with the money sage, the so-called lesser clubs that get into the prem suddenly find themselfs with so much more money, they can pay higher wages and pay more for better players. I do think there will always be the big clubs due to their distant and recent history but there is no doubt that the gap between promoted and established clubs in the prem and the big clubs is shortening.


I fully agree with both of you, OldSage and Huytonian. I am glad that things turned out to be this way and I really do hope the monotous La Liga and Bundesliga can learn from the Prem. I enjoy it more watching 20 teams gunning for the title rather than 4 or 6 and who knows, it could finally put England on a consistent basis of doing well in the World Cup and more English clubs in the CL (can you imagine Leicester taking on Barca next season …*#$?) That said Leicester are a breath of fresh air. Everyone thought they would go down but they didn’t. They have a resilient defence anchored by Huth and excellent counter-attack. All their forwards in Vardy, Okasagi, Dyer and Mahrez are very quick to recognize a counter-attacking situation and they really chase the ball faster than the defenders can! Credit to Ranieri and hoping to see Leicester vs Barcelona soon!