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Former Premier League teams struggling this season

Tuesday 3rd October 2017
If you look at the Championship this year you will notice the majority of clubs have appeared in the Premier League since its existence in 1992. What might surprise you is where some of those teams are currently. Three sides that occupy the relegation zone now is Bolton Wanderers, Sunderland and Birmingham City.

All three of those teams have some sort of history in the top flight in English football. Bolton are currently bottom of the table with only two points. They haven't even won a game and only scored four goals. Phil Parkinson's side managed to gain promotion last season from League One but look to be struggling in the Championship.

The Trotters did last appear in the Premier League back in the 2011-12 campaign where they finished 18th. It was their eleventh consecutive season in the top flight of English football before being relegated to the Championship.
Next up is Sunderland in 23rd place. The Black Cats only have seven points from 11 games. With only one win this season, Simon Grayson's side have probably been the underperformers of the season so far. That will be due to their recent relegation from the Premier League. Last season they finished bottom after a number of years fighting for their place in the top tier.

A recent away draw at Preston is a positive, but Sunderland fans will be hoping for better results in the near future. Even with the poor form they still see 25,000+ fans every home game.

The third ex-Premier League side we are going to discuss is Birmingham City. Now, this club has had an interesting period over the past few years. From 2003-2006 the Blues were located in the Premier League. They were also relegated and promoted over the course of a few years after and ended up in the Championship from 2011 onwards.

Recently they were positioned quite well and Gary Rowett was sacked which raised a few eyebrows. He had done well for the club so obviously, something was going on with the board, wasn't it? After Rowett's sacking, he was replaced by Gianfranco Zola. Many football fans saw what was happening and knew it wouldn't be the right decision.
Zola failed to be successful and led Birmingham to their spiralling poor form. The Italian resigned late in the 2015-16 because Birmingham fans called for his head and teammates were fighting among themselves in the dressing room. This was all down to the departure of Gary Rowett.

So next up Harry Redknapp comes in. Can he do any better? No. They ended up 19th meaning it was their worst league finish in three years. Redknapp lasted next season until September 16th when he was eventually sacked. Lee Carsley is now caretaker manager and the ex-Premier League side are still struggling with just eight points so far.

This shows the calibre of the Championship these days as it is proven that a club like Sunderland, who were relegated from the Premier League last season, aren't immune to a consecutive relegation. By the end of the season, we could be seeing more clubs that have appeared in the Premier League end up in League One.
Jamie Kynaston

For my sins, I'm a season ticket holder at Stoke City, I have been proud to watch them for over 20 years. I follow most of the UK leagues and the major European ones too, and I've been told that I talk way too much about football.


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