Vital Football

Latest Norwich City News

Can City Stay In The Premier League?

Can City Stay In The Premier League?

On Monday Morn` I put out a tweet, genuinely wondering where on Earth we`d amass enough points from our remaining 8 games in order to ensure Premier League survival. On current form that`s a hard puzzle to solve, but nevertheless I`ve decided to give it a whirl.

Traditionally, 40 points is the survival target, meaning that from our final 8 games we`d need three wins and a draw, or two wins and four draws. That`s if we need 40 points mind you; other teams may have fallen by the wayside before such a tally is required.

Here`s my thoughts on the remaining fixtures for what has overall been quite a sorry campaign:


Ah, our old pals from the `85 Milk Cup final. There`ll be no niceties this time around and no talk of any friendship trophies though. Speaking of cups, Sunderland are an interesting proposition in the survival scrap this year by virtue of their games in hand through their Capital One Cup spree. Personally I thought they put in a good shift last weekend against Crystal Palace even if they didn`t get a goal, so I think ultimately they`ll just about keep their heads above water.


Although all the games are "must-win" now, this is a golden opportunity to beat a team in and around our position. Victory here for Sunderland when they`ll still have games in hand even after this fixture would be a hammer blow to our own chances. That said, it`s a winnable game and our home form looks ok, whilst the Black Cats have struggled away of late.

Prediction: WIN (Just)


With Michael Laudrup gone, Gary Monk has had a mixed run since taking over the reigns. They hammered Cardiff in his first game at the helm, and despite going out in Europe they put in a good showing against a strong outfit in Napoli. But questions are being asked after their league form hasn`t drastically improved, and more questions will be posed of their temperament in relegation six-pointers after they blew a lead against fellow strugglers West Brom at the weekend.


Our away form means we`ll always be the underdogs, and this will be massive test of the mental attitude of both of these sides. But ultimately, Swansea at least have one or two players who know where the net is, even if they haven`t been as prolific this season as we might`ve initially expected. I`d fight fire with fire here and have the likes of Hoolahan and Redmond free to roam and be creative.

Prediction: DRAW (Both sides to fluff chances and keep looking nervously over their shoulders)


Last season`s home game with the Baggies remains of the few highlights of Chris Hughton`s tenure. The 4-0 win on that day secured Prem survival and lifted the gloom amongst the place in the face impending doom. We`ll need a similarly stirring performance his time around, and it`s another one of those games that you`d normally fancy us to do well in, against a fellow struggler and on our own patch. We did beat them away from home earlier this term too, but they`ll be buoyed by their recent win at Swansea. Tough call.


As stated in the Swansea part of this column, West Brom showed real character in their last away outing and that`ll be a big confidence booster for them the next time they get on the coach and wrack up some mileage. Has new boss Pepe Mel finally discovered the winning formula that will rescue the West-Midlands outfit? I expect this to be scrappy and not so easy on the eyes.

Prediction: DRAW (West Brom are a bogey side, we`re stuffed if we don`t attack)


Away, at Craven Cottage? Think I`ll pass on this one.



Prediction: LOSE (Hammering)


Just when you thought you couldn`t meet the likes of Luis Suarez at a worst possible time (in light of his free-scoring frolics against us), we`ll now be facing a Liverpool challenging for the League title all of a sudden. Defensively we`ve actually improved somewhat on home soil, so that means we might at least keep the score down if nothing else. But it`s going to be an absolutely mammoth task and on their form probably the hardest test during the whole run-in.


Barring a miracle, I can`t see us having much to crow about here. Even if Liverpool`s backline have an off-day, we don`t have the quality to punish them up front, so the most we could possibly hope for is a draw and a world-beating display from John Ruddy to deny the likes of Suarez & Sturridge amongst others. They`ll almost certainly win a penalty as well if Bassong gets anywhere near one of them in the box.

Prediction: LOSE


It`s all gone horribly wrong for the new regime, and David Moyes is probably second-guessing his decision to move on from Everton to take on a job of this size. To be fair it was always going to be a difficult task, but with every passing game he just seems to look more and more out of his depth, and the players just aren`t clicking with one-another whatsoever. Is United`s domination of English football finally over?


There has to be at least ONE big surprise from these last four games, and we may not have a better chance than this game to get three points. Manchester hasn`t been a happy hunting round for us in recent seasons, but with United falling so spectacularly from grace lately and Old Trafford not being anywhere near the fortress it once was, we might just have a chance of what would still be a huge upset when we need it most.

Prediction: WIN.


Another title challenger. But unlike Liverpool, Chelsea have been showing a couple of cracks of their own of late, ala their performance away to Aston Villa, which showed a distinct lack of discipline late on. Still, at home you fancy them to sweep all before them as they take the 2013/14 title race right to the wire.

This is another one of those games where I think a combination of our away form and lack of firepower will leave us as lambs to the slaughter. The only saving grace we may have is Chelsea getting a bit over-zealous and trying to rush things depending on how the table looks at that time. Also, if our situation is alarmingly desperate and all of those previous elements come together, that gives us a chance of sneaking a draw at the most. My heart says a draw, my head says a loss. (We`ll probably win now I`ve said that).

Prediction: LOSS


The final day, and what game to have at a time like this. First, let`s hope that Arsenal don`t suddenly have a late surge and are still in the title hunt by then, because if they are I`d write it off immediately. Even with Arsenal struggling to keep the pace recently in that regard, when push comes to shove they`ll be firm favourites to win this one. Speaking of hope, lets hope our fate is already sealed and there`s no final-day survival-Sunday hype, for better or worse. My heartstrings couldn`t handle it.


Well, we beat them last year so anything is possible. If Arsenal are out of the title picture and we are still needing a point, you never know, we might just manage it. It`ll either be a glorious day where we finally have something to chirp about, or it`ll be like going to a funeral. Tough call, so I`ll play it safe, say we`ll hold out for a draw and then it`s come what may depending on the teams around us.

Prediction: DRAW.

Total: 9 (38 points overall)

So, would 38 points be enough? Personally, I`m not so sure, especially when you look at our goal-difference. Make no mistake, if we`re going to maintain our status at English football`s top table, we`ll have to play our best football of the whole season, shattering our previous record of form, lack of consistency and lack of goals. Can we do that in 8 games when, in 30 games previous, we`ve struggled to do all of those things?


Twitter: @nick_sellers

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:Nick Sellers
Date:Tuesday March 18 2014
Time: 11:06AM


simple answer NO if Hopeless stays in charge
18/03/2014 11:28:00
38 points ! my youre optimistic ! and to think we could beat the worst manure side in years.....
18/03/2014 12:14:00
With useless Hughton in charge we are averaging 1 win every 8 games . We will thus get one more win , 32 points and be relegated
yellow belly
18/03/2014 19:34:00
Yep, one more win i think and thats yer lot. Hope I'm wrong!!
19/03/2014 07:20:00
We have been averaging a point per game over the season, so 7 or 8 points left and I think that will be enough! Sunderland and West Brom will be crucial in our survival though!
Matt Barrett
19/03/2014 08:23:00
just less than one point a game now but on average we can say 1 point a game. 8 points will take us to 37 points. a big ask bearing in mind HH will be in charge of those games and will it be enough ! 2 wins in last 15 games so what YB is saying is last 3 months we are winning 1 in 8 games so that is current form and we can only base predictions on that.
21/03/2014 09:14:00
Meanwhile of course the other 10 teams that are uncomfortably close to the drop zone have gimme run ins to seasons end. None of them face a team in top 9. Indeed none of them face a premiere side at all unless they are playing Norwich......... Back in the real world top 9 games remaining are:- Fulham 2. Cardiff WBA Hull Stoke 3. Palace Swansea WHU Norwich Villa 4. Sunderland 6. Or to look at it another way only Fulham Cardiff and WBA of the teams below us have a cosier run in. Sunderland dispute games in hand have a nightmare beyond nightmares. They face the same teams as Norwich do in their final four fixtures. Everton and Spurs added to their pot for good measure. As things now stand 35 points will probably be enough to maintain top league status. 38 will be a guarantee.
23/03/2014 04:06:00
Page 1/1
  1. 1

Login to post a comment

Recent Norwich City Articles

The International Break Fails To Raise A smile

Boring, pretty much sums it up

Webber Will Be Norwich City's Sporting Director

Says The EDP's Michael Bailey

Championship Cost Per Goal So Far In 2016/17

The end of the Championship campaign of 2016/17 is only a month and a bit away from fans across the country but as we go in to the remaining weeks of the campaign...

Can We Trust The Board To Get This Right?

The Tuckster isn't convinced

Archived Vital Norwich Articles

Vital Norwich articles from

Site Journalists

The Tuckster
Editor email
no email
no email
Tom McHugh
no email

Current Poll (see more polls)

Who Do You Want As Next City Manager?
Suggested By: Tuckster
Alan Pardew25%
Roy Hodgson3%
Alan Irvine1%
Gary Holt1%
Simon Grayson1%
Garry Monk31%
Chris Powell1%
Tim Sherwood4%
Kenny Jackett1%
Micky Phelan1%
Neil Lennon1%
Paul Heckingbottom6%
Frank de Boer5%
Claudio Ranieri 19%
ScoopDragon Publishing Entire League Network of Sites

League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Newcastle 38 24 6 8 78 38
2 Brighton 38 23 8 7 77 30
3 Huddersfield 37 22 5 10 71 4
4 Leeds Utd 38 21 6 11 69 16
5 Reading 38 20 7 11 67 2
6 Sheff Wed 38 18 8 12 62 9
7 Fulham 38 16 13 9 61 19
8 Norwich 38 16 9 13 57 9
9 Preston 38 15 12 11 57 6
10 Derby County 38 14 11 13 53 3
11 Barnsley 38 14 9 15 51 0
12 Aston Villa 38 13 12 13 51 0
13 Cardiff 38 14 9 15 51 -1
14 Brentford 38 14 8 16 50 3
15 Q.P.R. 38 14 8 16 50 -5
16 Wolves 37 12 9 16 45 -2
17 Ipswich 38 10 15 13 45 -9
18 Birmingham 38 11 12 15 45 -16
19 Bristol City 38 11 8 19 41 -3
20 Forest 38 11 8 19 41 -11
21 Burton 38 10 11 17 41 -14
22 Blackburn 38 9 13 16 40 -11
23 Wigan 38 8 10 20 34 -13
24 Rotherham 38 4 5 29 17 -54
Vital Football Comment
Latest F1 News
Latest Vital Boxing News
Write for Vital Football

Recent Norwich City Results (view all)

Norwich City Fixtures (view all)

Apr 1 2017 3:00PM : Aston Villa (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 5 2017 7:45PM : Huddersfield Town (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 8 2017 3:00PM : Reading (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 14 2017 3:00PM : Fulham (H)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 17 2017 3:00PM : Preston North End (a)
Sky Bet Championship
Apr 21 2017 7:45PM : Brighton & Hove Albion (H)
Sky Bet Championship

Vital Members League Table

3.yellow belly309
4.Steve from Oz238
6.screaming canary53
8.Bolshie Budgie24
The Vital Football Members League