We are edging closer and closer to the restart of the Premier League which is an exciting thought but it’s also true that there are still too many unknowns.
This week’s hot topic concerns the relegation battle and how it will be handled if the season doesn’t restart. The league’s governing body has come up with a plan but it has quickly come under fire from multiple directions.
In this piece, I detail what the Premier League’s current idea is, whether it will come to fruition and how it will impact the bottom clubs if it does.
What Have the League Officials Proposed?
Simply put, if the restart is delayed further, the governing body wants to handle relegation using a points-per-game method. What does that mean?
It basically means a coefficient based on the average points won per game until this point will determine whether a club is relegated or not.
And I can’t even begin to explain how wrong this is.
Now, I do understand that scrapping relegation outright will raise a million questions and the league officials do seem bent on the idea of keeping the format of three clubs getting the drop, while a further three from the Championship climbing up.
After all, the teams from the lower echelon that have fought tooth and nail to get promotion will be absolutely devastated if they are told that their efforts have been pointless.
It’s evident that this issue will need to be handled somehow but let’s see if this particular method has any substance to it.
Is the Method Fair to the Bottom Clubs?
You don’t need me to tell you that this cannot be categorized as a fair method to settle the 2019/2020 relegation proceedings.
There are so many things to take into account here. For example, some of the clubs have had a tougher run-in so far. It is natural that if you’ve played the top clubs more, you are bound to have a disadvantage in the race for survival at this point.
If the season is not concluded and you relegate a club based on their current points-per-game metrics, how are you going to label it as fair?
And this is not just my opinion. Former Manchester United legend and now top pundit Gary Neville has expressed the same concern.
He’s put it into words brilliantly by saying that it’s one thing to go down fighting, it’s a whole other thing to get the drop without even having the chance to defend yourself.
It’s definitely not in the spirit of this league and I for one hope that a better solution will be brought forth as this is yet another shaky step to bringing the league back that could cause more long-term harm than it could do good.
Once again, the small fish have been neglected by the Premier League’s governing body and the bad news is that they will probably not even get the chance of a proper hearing of their concerns.
I want the EPL back as much as anyone else but I am also growing increasingly anxious about the prospect that Project Restart is just an effort to get the top clubs back producing revenue for the league as soon as possible.