If West Brom look close to a certainty for relegation, there is still a cluster of teams who are fighting for their collective Premier League survival in the coming weeks. It will be right up until May 13th, when the final round of games takes place, that the final table will continue to shape itself.
With Manchester City dominant, Premier League betting shifts a lot of its focus to the relegation scrap. Apart from an Alan Pardew departed West Brom, the remaining teams in the mix are Stoke City (the next favourites at 2/7 to go down), Southampton, West Ham, Swansea, Huddersfield and Crystal Palace.
The likes of Brighton and Newcastle may not be guaranteed safety quite yet; but under the tutelage of Chris Hughton and Rafa Benitez respectively, they seem in safe hands. So it is for the remaining sides to battle it out for what is realistically two remaining relegation spots.
West Ham may feel they have enough to stay up, but if David Moyes is to see his contract extended beyond the end of the season, he will need some significant results to help his cause. With a home match with Manchester United to be rescheduled, West Ham have Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City to come. Their one saving grace, however, may be the fact that there two final games in May are winnable.
It is hard to imagine Leicester and Everton having much to play for by that stage and Moyes may look to take three or four priceless points in games that may prove to have fallen well.
Swansea though may be less lucky. Despite Bournemouth being similarly safe to Everton and the likes, a final day match at home to Stoke City could be a game with a profound impact on who survives. It is difficult to know where exactly each team will stand by then, but it is feasible this will be a game with everything on the line for both sides.
Huddersfield are a relative success story under David Wagner, whose own humility has fitted in well with a club with its supporters at its heart and organisation and hunger at the epicentre of its sides performances in top-flight football. The reality though, is that despite the honesty of his team’s endeavours, they have a battle ahead. May matches against Man City and Arsenal may not be the disaster they appear on paper. With both sides focused on Europe, Huddersfield will be hoping they will have one eye on matters elsewhere.
Roy Hodgson has done an admirable job at Crystal Palace, but the former England manager could be mired in a proper war come May, with an away game at Stoke, before travelling to West Brom on the last day of the season.
Southampton have a mixed bag of games, but by the time May comes, Mark Hughes will be hoping to have his side on the brink of survival. An away game against Everton may help his cause. Paradoxically, a final game against Man City may work to his benefit, with the Premier League title almost certainly secured, and regardless of the Champions League, a host of Man City’s players will be eyeing this summer’s World Cup in Russia.