Most clubs that have been in the Premier League have been relegated at some point, with only six teams have remained members of the league since it was founded in 1992: Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Everton and Tottenham Hotspur.
There are three other clubs that have not been relegated from the Premier League, but they were promoted relatively recently: Stoke City (promoted in 2008), Swansea City (2011) and Bournemouth (2011).
A clean slate
Relegation from the Premier League is not the end of the world. Sometimes it gives clubs the opportunity to start again with a clean slate. Several clubs that have traditionally inhabited the top flight have had poor seasons resulting in relegation, only to bounce back. Manchester City, for example, were relegated to the second tier in 1996 and 2001, but were promoted back to the Premier League in 2000 and 2002; since the latter promotion they have won the title twice.
Magpies on the run
Newcastle United are another example of a club with a large following that has nevertheless suffered relatively frequent setbacks. Promoted to the Premier League a year after its inception in 1993, the club were relegated in 2009 after getting through four managers in one season.
The following year, they won the Championship, returning to the Premier League after just one season away, only to be relegated again at the end of last season following a series of failed managerial appointments and disappointing big money signings. However, according to 888 Sportsbetting, the Magpies are firm favourites to win the Championship this season and return to the top flight once more.
Those we have lost
In contrast, to Manchester City and Newcastle United, Leeds United were considered one of England’s biggest football clubs until they were relegated from the Premier League in 2004. Ongoing financial woes led the club into administration and relegation to League One in 2007, before returning to the Championship in 2010, where they have been ever since.
Two-time European Cup winners Nottingham Forest, relegated from the Premier League in 1999, and former Division One champions Ipswich Town, relegated in 2002, have also failed to bounce back; Aston Villa fans will be hoping their club, relegated last season after being a member of the Premier League since its inception, don’t do similar.
Many clubs regularly bounce back and forth between the Premier League and the Championship. Leicester City were first promoted to the Premier League in 1994, relegated in 1995, then promoted again in 1996. They were relegated again in 2002, which was followed by another promotion in 2003, then another relegation in 2004.
In 2008, the Foxes were relegated from the Championship to League One for the first time. However, they were promoted back to the Championship in 2009, and back to the Premier League in 2014. Astonishingly, after narrowly avoiding relegation once more in 2015, they went on to win the Premier League for the first time in 2016.
Less lucky are Birmingham City; the Blues were promoted to the Premier League for the first time in 2002, relegated in 2006, promoted again in 2007, relegated again in 2008, promoted once more in 2009 and relegated once more in 2011. They have been in the Championship ever since.
Sometimes relegation from the Premier League is the harbinger of a prolonged downward spiral, but if the relegated club can retain its best players, make some signings with Championship experience and the owner, team and supporters remain united, getting promoted at the first time of asking is a realistic goal. Football may be full of surprises, but, ultimately, you can’t keep a good team down.