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'Playing nice isn’t enough' – Parker predicts who will be relegated

'Playing nice isn’t enough' – Parker predicts who will be relegated

14/02/2020 at 13:30Updated 14/02/2020 at 14:30

The top of the Premier League table is decided, but at the bottom it's getting to the business end with six teams deeply embroiled in the scrap for relegation. Paul Parker predicts the teams he thinks will survive – and the three who will be dropping down into the Championship…

Premier League table

20th - Norwich City

Premier League table as it stands
Daniel Farke

Daniel FarkeGetty Images

Norwich have come up and they haven't gone and blown all their money. They're a good club. They haven't changed too much even since I was a kid. They are going to get relegated but they will be in good shape to come up again.

They'll have a similar squad to the one that got them up comfortably last season. It will be interesting if they can keep Teemu Pukki. He's the one you could say someone might come in for. But if you take him down to Championship you have to say he's going to give them a minimum 25 goals again and if you add that to the rest of the team's goals you'll have a great chance of coming up again.

They have a history of bringing a lot of players through their system and building. They will disappointed that they will be getting relegated but if you look at the money that they have gained just from being in the Premier League for one season, the people of Norwich will know it's a small step back to eventually being a big positive in the future.

19th - Aston Villa

Jack Grealish

Jack GrealishGetty Images

They've got Jack Grealish who is good but sticking out as a big fish in a small pond. He has done well given the rest of the players around him. But in the position they are in at the time you need a little bit more than one standout player.

You need a few more fighters and they simply haven't got them. They need more resilience in the side. As an attacking unit they also haven't done enough. They haven't scored enough goals.

They have got Spurs at the weekend and I do think they need to win that one if they are going to have a chance. Tottenham are vulnerable at the moment. If there's a game that could wake them up then it could be that one.

Given how big the game is for the home side and Villa Park can be on occasions such as this there's an opportunity for Villa to go and do something. If they get a good performance and a win out of that it will show a lot about them, but it looks like even a draw is not good enough at this stage.

18th - Brighton and Hove Albion

Brighton

BrightonGetty Images

As much as they have definitely improved as footballing side under their new manager, I'm not sure they will have enough. They play in a different manner to how Chris Hughton used to play.

But Hughton did what everyone at Brighton wanted from him and that is to stay in the Premier League. At this moment in time there might be a few Brighton fans saying that they could do with some of Chris Hughton's tactics back. They will want to be a bit more solid, rather than how they are now under Graham Potter where they are quite open in the way they play.

The problem is they are not winning enough games. If they are not drawing they are losing. If you don't get enough wins you don't get enough points. You can play as nice a style of football as you like but you don't have the points required after 38 games, you can't say you deserve to stay up.

Safe - West Ham

West Ham

West HamGetty Images

I don't want to come out and say West Ham will go down because I live in West Ham territory! But in all seriousness, they've got out of this position before under David Moyes in the past. They have had a difficult run-in and they've got away with it.

They have also got games against the big teams coming up where no one is giving them a chance, but they actually like those kind of games, especially against the London clubs. They were the first team to beat Tottenham at their new ground last season and they beat Chelsea earlier this season.

You look at who they've got to play, they've got Southampton, Newcastle, Burnley, Norwich, Watford and Villa in the run-in. That'll be 18 points where they think they can go and win. If they take at least 10 from those they'll be on 34 points and I think that will be OK given the way the league is going.

Safe - Watford

Nigel Pearson of Watford

Nigel Pearson of WatfordGetty Images

Because of their manager and the quality players that they have they will get out of it. No one could understand the position they were in. Nigel Pearson came in and proved that the players and clubs had let themselves down. The players now seem much happier now since he has come in and there is more belief in the environment.

Their last three results and performances against Villa, Everton and Brighton haven't been good enough. They've given up leads when they shouldn't have done. But I think they've got enough there to say that people wouldn't come out and hang their hat on Watford getting relegated.

Safe - Bournemouth

Bournemouth

BournemouthGetty Images

They have had massive problems with injuries but they are beginning to look like they are getting it out of the way now. Having an injury crisis is part and parcel of football.

There have been better sides than Bournemouth that have gone down. Eddie Howe is a good manager but people lose their jobs because of injuries in the past. If you get injuries you have to get on with it. Injuries cannot be used as an excuse. That's the point of having a deep squad so that you can deal with that.

They had good results against Brighton and Aston Villa recently though and with players coming back it looks like it could just be coming back together for them and it should be enough.