Premiership Futures: How Will the Promoted Teams Fare this Season?

Martin Green

Tuesday, July 24, 2018 4:15 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jul. 24, 2018 4:15 PM UTC

Wolves, Cardiff and Fulham have earned promotion to the Premiership and history suggest that two of them should avoid relegation in 2018/19.

<p>There is always a temptation to back newly promoted Premiership teams to be relegated straight back down to the second tier of English football. After all, these sides seem like minnows compared to the established Premier League sides that have been splashing the cash on big players for years. However, that is a risky strategy. Last season, all three sides that came up stayed up – even Huddersfield, the smallest club to play Premiership football since the mid-1990s. So how will Wolves, Cardiff and Fulham fare in 2018/19 after finally reaching the Promised Land?</p><p>Newcastle and Brighton achieved comfortable, mid-table finishes last season and Huddersfield secured safety with a couple of games to spare. However, the previous season Hull City and Middlesbrough both yo-yoed straight back down, while only Burnley survived. Yet in 2015/16, Norwich were the only newly promoted team to be relegated. In total, only eight newly promoted teams have been relegated in the last eight years, while the other 16 stayed up. We have never seen all three teams go straight back down, and it ranges from zero to two.</p><p>It is very difficult to imagine Wolves going straight back down given the scale of ambition displayed by the club’s owners. They have bankrolled the team heavily in the past 12 month, and Nuno Espirito Santo’s men played some scintillating football in the Championship last season. They were dubbed the Barcelona of the Black Country for their tiki taka exploits, and they have since improved in the transfer market. Experience Portuguese international Joao Moutinho, a title winner at Porto and Monaco, has joined a team that already enjoys a strong Iberian contingent. They have also signed Portugal goalkeeper Rui Patricio, who starred at the World Cup</p><p>They have completed deals to keep Leo Bonatini, Diogo Jota and Willy Boly at the club, and they can call upon the services of Portuguese midfielder Ruben Neves, who was head and shoulders above anyone else in the Championship last season. In total they have spent more than £40 million this summer, and they show no signs of slowing down. Rather than backing them to be relegated, it might be more interesting to bet on them to break into the top 10 of the Premiership. <a href=";a=e605009c-af6d-4596-a06f-dbd28d37b12f&amp;f=2">Bet365</a> has a market leading 6/5 on Wolves finishing in the top half of the table, and that looks really interesting.</p><p>Cardiff’s prospects look somewhat bleaker. They went straight back down on their only previous Premiership appearance, and they could repeat that disappointment in 2018/19. They have spent around £25 million on new arrivals, but those players do not exactly set the pulses racing. They signed Josh Murphy from Norwich, Bobby Reid from Bristol City, Greg Cunningham from Preston North End and Alex Smithies from QPR. None of them are established Premiership players, which is worrying for Cardiff fans. Only one Cardiff player, Sol Bamba, made the Championship Team of the Season, while Wolves and Fulham each had three members. This Cardiff side is not exactly teeming with quality, and manager Neil Warnock has always been a specialist at getting relegated from the top flight, so Cardiff look good at 4/5 <a href=";a=87e126f9-4229-4364-9464-7fbff2763146&amp;f=2">with William Hill</a> to go down.</p><p>Fulham look to be an entirely different prospect. They finished just behind Cardiff in third, but they finished the season in magnificent form and they breezed through the playoffs. In Ryan Sessegnon, they have one of the most exciting youngsters in the country. He won Championship Player of the Season and he is tipped to star for</p><p>England at future tournaments. The Cottagers played an exciting brand of football last season, and they have already shown impressive ambition in the transfer market this summer. Jean Michael Seri, who was linked with Chelsea and Arsenal, joined in a £27 million deal and he should provide bite and energy in the Fulham engine room. Fulham are 15/8 at <a href=";a=bced0cf5-be5d-40a4-8446-02910689b2b5&amp;f=2">Paddy Power</a> to be relegated and that looks like one to avoid, as they are a decent team.</p>
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