Back in August, I set out a series of predictions for the Premiership season, and now that we’re in May, it is time to look back and see just how far out I was.
20. Derby (Finished 20th)
It wasn’t rocket science predicting that Derby would finish bottom, but I don’t think anyone really expected them to be as bad as they were. They could have trebled their meagre tally of eleven points and still finished bottom, and finished a massive 24 points behind Birmingham. Ouch.
19. Wigan (Finished 14th)
I’m still not entirely sure how Wigan survived this season. They don’t appear to have many decent players, don’t play particularly inspiring football, and for goodness sake, they rely on Titus Bramble at the back. But Steve Bruce moved from Birmingham and added steel to the team, and they were rarely in real danger.
18. Bolton (Finished 16th)
I was so confident that Allardyce’s departure from Bolton would see them fall through the trapdoor that I put a bet on it, and until the middle of April it was looking good. But then they managed an unlikely run of form and escaped. You can’t help but feel they only escaped because the bottom five were particularly poor this season.
17. Birmingham (Finished 19th)
To quote what I said back in August, ‘I think with Steve Bruce’s top flight experience, they’ll have just about enough’. Little was I to know he’d apply that experience to Wigan, while Birmingham sunk without trace towards the end of the season, not putting up the sort of fight seen at Bolton and Fulham.
16. Fulham (Finished 17th)
Not too far off with this one, although they only scraped their way out of the relegation zone with a superb finish to the season. I expect them to be among the favourites for the drop next year.
Coming up, number 15-11…