Enzo Maresca didn't need end to 26-year record to know Leicester City truth

Enzo Maresca on the touchline at the Stadium of Light during Leicester City's win over Sunderland
Enzo Maresca on the touchline at the Stadium of Light during Leicester City's win over Sunderland -Credit:MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The three promoted clubs’ immediate relegation back to the Championship only emphasises the task Leicester City face when they return to the Premier League next season.

Luton were practically down before the Premier League’s finale on Sunday but their defeat to Fulham confirmed they would be joining Burnley and Sheffield United in the second tier, one year after they were all promoted together. It’s the first time all three promoted clubs have failed to survive in 26 years.

Upon City’s promotion, boss Enzo Maresca was quick to stress that the club’s target in the top flight would be survival and nothing more. But he didn’t need to see last season’s promoted clubs come straight back down to make that judgement. Replicating the past decade, with titles and European campaigns, is simply not on the cards for City right now, their manager has insisted.

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When it was mentioned to Maresca about the struggles this season’s promoted clubs had had, he said: “Exactly. But it’s not only this year. Overall, 90 per cent of the time, clubs that get promoted, the year after they are involved in the relegation battle. But it’s normal. That’s why next year we need to understand our target, which is to avoid relegation.

“Most people have in mind the recent history, the last 10 years. If you go back further, sometimes it’s Championship, sometimes it’s League One. The last 10 years, they’ve won many important things, like the Premier League and FA Cup, so the fresh memories are just about the last 10 years. Next season, it’s quite clear we need to understand our target is to try to avoid relegation as soon as possible. This is the most important thing.”

If their task wasn’t hard enough as it is, City may also have to start the campaign on minus points with a decision on their charge for an alleged breach of Profit and Sustainability regulations expected during the summer. So far, every team charged has ended up with a points deduction.

The final line-up for the Premier League is not complete yet though, with the third promoted club still to be decided. Leeds and Southampton face off in the play-off final at Wembley this weekend having comfortably come through their semi-finals with home victories in the second legs at the end of last week.

What's your early prediction for where City will finish next season? Let us know in the comments section below.