Pardew Happy To Avoid Relegation!

Last updated : 13 August 2014 By Footy Mad - Editor

And THAT dear friend ... seems to include Newcastle United.

Alan Pardew, once again, has no ambition and says it's "same again" as he strives for mid-table.

So, another season of nothingness, although a relegation fight seems a long way off ... unless the new foreign players find the Premier League too tough, as we have seen of late.

Sylvain Marveaux, Gabriel Obertan, Gaël Bigirimana, Romain Amalfitano, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Mehdi Abeid and even Davide Santon have never really got to grips with (arguably) the World's Toughest League.

Will the new crop fair any better?

So who will go down?

The Mackems finished in good shape towards the back end of the season and probably have enough to keep their head above water.

Turf Moor

My first thought when sizing up the market was that favourites for the drop Burnley have perhaps been a bit hard done by following their comfortable promotion campaign from the Sky Bet Championship.

Manager Sean Dyche has apparently been running up his phone bill trying to get some deals done over the summer to bolster numbers and although the likes of Marvin Sordell, Lukas Jutkiewic and Steven Reid among others may not exactly get the pulse racing, the arrivals look more than useful enough for this level who can slot in where needed to the manager's strategy.

There seems no reason for Dyche to change the enthusiastic approach which got them here in the first place - and that will be important.

Burnley are odds-on to return to the second tier but they could have enough pieces in place to sustain a decent challenge and retain their status for next year.

Loftus Road
Harry Redknapp and QPR get another crack at the top flight after bouncing straight back up via Bobby Zamora's late winner against Derby in May's play-off final at Wembley.

I just wonder whether Redknapp's approach can still cut it and although owner Tony Fernandes has stuck his hand in his pocket to go on a recruitment drive, they still look a a bit short in terms of what will be required.

It seems Redknapp himself believes he needs some help as well and has lured Glenn Hoddle out of semi-retirement to become first team coach and help install a 3-5-2 system.

QPR look thin on numbers up front as well - Zamora has been exposed at this level in the past while Austin flits in an out of the treatment room and can't seem to put a run of games together.

The bottom line is that the Hoops will have no-one quaking with terror and look well worth a glance at 2/1 for an immediate return to life in the Sky Bet Championship.

Villa Park
My other relegation fancy are Aston Villa, who look an accident waiting to happen this season.

Paul Lambert's side have diced with an exit from the top flight for a while now.

Lambert's vision may be constrained to a reasonable extent by owner Randy Lerner's reluctance to bring in real quality and this summer's influx of Joe Cole and Kieran Richardson to add some creativity still smacks of a team on the scrimp and save.

It also means Lambert having to rekindle his enthusiasm in the likes of Darren Bent, Charles N'Zogbia and Alan Hutton, a trio of players the manager has only used sporadically and would essentially not be part of his plans if he had the money to get stuck into the transfer market with some vigour.

Overall, their prospects don't look particularly rosy and Villa have more than enough issues to overcome to suggest they will fill one of the dreaded bottom three spaces this time around.

And from a personal view ... boy would I LOVE IT if they did go down after these banners (below) when we were relegated.