Newcastle United were dealt a rude reminder on Monday night that relegation worries aren’t a thing of the past, despite an excellent win against West Ham and a spirited fightback for a point against Manchester United.
Swansea delivered a narrow 1-0 home win over Watford tonight, Swansea Captain Ashley Williams scoring the 27th minute winner from a corner delivered by former Sunderland loan player Ki Sung-yeung.
That win takes the Swans above Newcastle United and their ex-player Jonjo Shelvey, at least until next weekend when Newcastle travel to Watford and Swansea are at Everton.
Elsewhere, some other key matches at the bottom see Sunderland v Bournemouth and West Brom v Aston Villa.
Interesting to note though that despite beating Newcastle in the FA Cup with a weakened side, Watford have lost their last four Premier League matches and haven’t won a PL game since 20 December 2015.
Rated as having a good season so far, if Watford lost on Saturday then Newcastle would only be four points behind them.
It definitely feels (to me) that we are reaching a sequence of matches (once again!) that could eventually decide our future. Recent results have seen a coming together of teams with only eight points separating Watford in 12th and Newcastle in 18th,
A couple of wins and Newcastle would almost be on their way to looking comfortable, whereas if it goes the other way then the gap could open up again.
This just sums up the fact that the January signings (so far…and hopefully these to come) weren’t just a wish list but rather an absolute necessity for Newcastle to launch a survival bid.
If they play like they did against West Ham then no worries in my opinion but anything short of that and we are in for a worrying final four months of the season.
Bottom nine in the Premier League after 22 games, number of points before each team:
27 West Brom
12 Aston Villa