They say the Championship is one of the hardest divisions to get out of in world football, although Yeovil’s early demotion from the second-tier last term suggests that this truism only holds so much weight.
We’ve eschewed impressive newboys Wolves, Brentford and Rotherham for a few comatose giants in search of relegation-induced profits this term. There are no prizes for guessing who are first up.
Blackpool to be relegated @ 11/20
This pick won’t win any prizes for ingenuity after the Fylde coast club lost 20 of their 29 Championship matches post-November last term.
New boss Jose Riga was working with just eight senior players after more than a month in the job and Blackpool haven’t added much in the way of quality since, with the likes of former Aston Villa ‘striker’ Nathan Delfouneso – scorer of 12 goals in 112 league games – hardly setting the pulse racing.
The Tangerines only stayed up last term because they won or drew 15 of their first 17 Championship matches of the campaign. It’s hard to see them repeating that feat under Riga.
Leeds @ 7/2
The shambolic former Champions League semi-finalists (just over 13 years ago, lest we forget) cashed in 28-goal Championship top scorer Ross McCormack, who fired home just under half his side’s league goals last term, for £11m earlier this summer.
New owner Massimo Cellino has lumbered his managerial pick – former Forest Green flop Dave Hockaday – with Serie A loanees Souleymane Doukara and Zan Benedicic, who have made 12 league appearances between them for Catania and AC Milan.
Cellino went through 36 managers in 22 years as Cagliari chief, and Leeds are in no way stable as it is – they finished 15th last year in spite of McCormack’s goals.
The bwin.com layers are clearly aware of potential trouble ahead, as 7/2 is hardly an astronomical price on such a huge club dropping down another tier, but it could look massive after a few weeks of the campaign.
Sheffield Wednesday @ 9/2
In contrast to their fellow Yorkshiremen, it’s difficult to figure out why a team that finished just nine points ahead of the drop zone last term are such a big price to end 2014/15 in the bottom three.
The Owls have picked up a couple of Championship-worthy players – Sam Hutchinson from Chelsea should go okay – but a club that finished 16th and 18th in the past two campaigns and spent the previous two in League One should not be more than 4/1 for relegation.