Millwall survive relegation thanks to lucky goldfish


Millwall fans invade the pitch after the Lions avoided relegation. (Getty)

It was early April, and Millwall needed a string of good results through the end of the season to survive the drop down to League One. The outlook for the Lions was bleak.

But their fortunes changed when life-long supporter Tommy Pratt bought what is now known as the lucky goldfish. Pratt is friends with Millwall players Alan Dunne and David Forde, and started jokingly texting them before each game “may the fish be with you.”

Then a strange thing started happening: Millwall couldn’t lose.

"The fish has been everywhere with us - it came out to dinner a few weeks ago," Dunne told News At Den. ”It became funnier and funnier after every game because we were still unbeaten and the fish was still alive and going strong.”

The magical lucky fish was there sitting in its bowl by the TV as Millwall put up a 4-0-3 record in the club’s final seven games of the season. Perhaps Millwall should consider a secondary mascot?

Even manager Ian Holloway placed some faith in the water-dwelling creature. “Maybe we should get some Koi carp for the training ground,” he joked.

It might not be such a bad idea.

Story via New At Den


Angry fans throw chairs at club chairman (no pun intended but intended)

Getting relegated always makes for an uncomfortable next press conference. When it happens to be the first relegation in the club’s 108-year history - in the soccer hotbed of Argentina, no less - it’s downright a nightmare.

Club Atletico Independiente president Javier Cantero can vouch for that first hand after his team dropped from Argentina’s top flight for the first time since its founding in 1904.

Cantero’s season-ending press conference was suddenly interrupted by a mob of angry fans who began flinging chairs at Cantero and any poor soul with him on stage. With the mob calling for his head (his resignation), Cantero was forced to flee the scene.

Next time, maybe send your spokesman out there instead?

(H/T Deadspin)

-Thomas Hautmann (@HautmannOnFOX)


Good Guy Iniesta Saves Former Club from Relegation


World Cup champion, Euro Cup Winner, La Liga steamroller: Iniesta’s resume was impressive enough, and then this happens.

According to reports from Spanish newspaper Marca, the Barcelona man recently found that his boyhood club, Albacete, were on the verge of administration and automatic relegation after being unable to pay player salaries.

Iniesta’s immediate response? Hand the club €240,000 to cover their expenses.

While that amount might be a drop in the bucket for a player like Iniesta, this isn’t the only time he’s supported his local side. Iniesta’s winery (yes, he owns a winery), the aptly named Bodega Iniesta, is Albacete’s current sponsor.

Here’s to Iniesta; just as good off the pitch as on.


Premier League, Surviving on top: Part Three

In the final segment of our examination of the history and impact of relegation from the Premier League, we focus on the financial difficulties of relegated clubs.

Along with money lost from television deals, teams also lose significant money from lack of sponsorship income and a historically lowered attendance. To combat this, teams are given parachute payments.

Every year, teams receive payments based on how many years they have been a victim of relegation. The payments gets smaller each year and stay at a fixed level after year 4 of relegation.

In total, teams that have been relegated average a loss of $71,000,000 the year after relegation. Nine clubs have actually gone bankrupt within 5 years of being relegated.


Premier League, Surviving on Top: Part two


In part two of our examination of the history and impact of relegation from the Premier League, we take a look at the statistical odds and financial impact for each club.

There is still hope for recently-relegated Wigan, Reading, and QPR. Clubs that are relegated to the Championship have a 60% chance of returning to the Premier League the following season — though none that were relegated last year made their way back.

For clubs that are promoted to the Premier League, there is an 82% chance that they will be relegated the following year, evidenced by Reading this year. Newly promoted Cardiff City hopes to channel the momentum to make sure that doesn’t happen next year:

The financial implications of relegation cannot be overstated. Next season, Premier League clubs will receive 30 times more yearly revenue from TV rights than teams in the Championship. Just one year of relegation can cripple a team’s finances.


Tomorrow, we look at the relegation hardships that teams endure, as well as the compensation received to help soften the financial blow. All of this is leading up to FOX Soccer’s coverage of the final Premier League matchday with nine games live on broadcast across the FOX family of networks.



Premier League, Surviving on Top: Part One


As the season comes to a close, we examine the history and impact of relegation from the Premier League with our three-part series “Surviving on Top.” Various topics during in our discourse include the overview of relegation, the 21-year history of Premier League relegation, as well as statistical and financial analysis on the impact of relegation.

To start, the most recent team to seal their fate to England’s second-tier league - the Football League Championship - were Wigan after their defeat against Arsenal at Emirates Stadium on Wednesday:

Wigan previously held the distinction of being one of 11 clubs that never suffered relegation from the Premier League; with Arsenal, Aston Villa, Chelsea, Everton, Fulham, Liverpool, Manchester United, Tottenham, Stoke and Swansea also in the list. Conversely, of the 45 clubs that have enjoyed spells in the Premier League, eight of them have been relegated three or more times from the top flight:


On Saturday, we take a look at the statistical odds of relegation and promotion, as well as the financial impact for each club in their respective league. All of this is leading up to FOX Soccer’s coverage of the final Premier League matchday with nine games live on broadcast across the FOX family of networks.


Fans issue death threat to Spanish club Xerez with personalized crucifixes


Xerez has had a terrible season. They currently sit in last place in Spain’s second division. As their relegation from Liga Adelante looms, fans made sure to drive the message home that they are not happy with the club’s performance.

Upon arrival at their training field, players and coaches were met with each of their names on individual crucifixes. Below is a video showing a handful of the different players and coaches’ names.

Let’s hope Xerez can rise from the dead in Spain’s third division next season.

H/T 101GG


Relegation Battle: One week remaining


Remaining matches that impact relegation:

5/14: Arsenal vs. Wigan

5/19: Wigan vs. Aston Villa; Tottenham vs. Sunderland

Heading into the final week of the Barclays Premier League, the final team relegated has yet to be determined. Following recent results Stoke, Norwich, Newcastle, Southampton, and Fulham have sealed their spots in the Premier League for next season.

All eyes will be on the match between Arsenal and Wigan on Tuesday. Arsenal is battling for a Champions League position and Wigan is fighting for survival. A Wigan loss will be a dagger in their campaign and would condemn them to the Championship next season.

If the Latics beat the Gunners, Sunday’s matchup between Wigan and Aston Villa could have Premier League life or death riding on it.


Premier League relegation battle


With 2 weeks remaining, there are still 10 Premier League teams that can be mathematically relegated to the npower Championship. To say that every game left on the team’s schedule is a must-win would be a drastic understatement.

Here are just a few of the matches that could be the difference between survival and relegation:

  • 5/7: Wigan vs Swansea City
  • 5/12: QPR vs Newcastle
  • 5/12: Southampton vs Sunderland
  • 5/19: Wigan vs Aston Villa