Sky Sports asked some of their regular guests who they fancied for relegation this season.
Matt le Tissier picked Bournemouth, Villa and Norwich, with Paul Merson choosing exactly the same trio to go down.
Of the four TV pundits asked, only Phil Thompson selected Sunderland to make the drop, choosing Villa and Bournemouth to join them.
Thompson explaining his choice of the mackems:
‘I know Sunderland won last week but it was against 10 men so I don’t see it changing much and I can see them still being down there.’
The last of the four, Charlie Nicholas, also picked Bournemouth to make it a clean sweep for the south coast club whose recent form has been dismal.
However, he picked both Newcastle and maybe surprisingly Watford to go down as well.
Watford have beaten both Newcastle and our Saturday opponents Stoke City away from home in recent weeks but Nicholas thinks they don’t score enough goals.
As for Newcastle, the former Celtic and Arsenal player thinks that to stand any chance of getting out of trouble, United need to sign a minimum of two defenders in January…something (buying the defenders, though not necessarily relegation) I find it hard to disagree with.
‘Watford haven’t got the goals in them and, from what I’ve seen, if they don’t score first then they’re done. It’s up to Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo alone to get them out of trouble.
As for Newcastle, well Steve McClaren needs to get to January and get at least two defenders as they look so exposed.
I worry for Bournemouth as well and I wonder how they can tighten up their defence when they don’t have the players to do it.’