Which teams are promoted to the Premier League for 2023/24 season? And who is relegated?
The idea of promotion and relegation may feel foreign to some, but it’s a very, very real, and healthy concept in European leagues.
It’s been a surprising season in the English top flight. Near the summit, Arsenal came from nowhere (if you’d listened to most ‘experts’) to pose the only real threat to the Manchester City Premier League procession, an already dominant team slipping arguably (not arguably!) the hottest striker into their XI. Newcastle United excited many an onlooker to secure a Champions League place ahead of their Saudi schedule.
Meanwhile, massive underperformances from some people’s favourites Liverpool and Chelsea allowed an improving, but still not convincing Man Utd to get top four added to domestic cup joy. Then there were the highly commendable campaigns from Brighton, Brentford and Aston Villa (at least once Emery got his hands on them!).
Of course, Spurs did their thing to keep us amused.
Down at the bottom, the three spots saved for footballing farewells were flirted with by several teams. As we edged closer to the 38th game, Southampton made sure of their fall to the Championship - England’s second tier - while Nottingham Forest took advantage of the Gunners’ collapse to guarantee their stay. That left Everton, Leeds United and Leicester City fighting to avoid joining the Saints with one game remaining. Everton needed to win and they did just that, beating Bournemouth 1-0 to survive on the final day. Leeds and Leicester will play Championship football next season.
Who’s coming up to the Premier League?
To maintain the 20-team league format, we’re going to need three replacements for our fallen footballing brothers. A couple of them, Burnley and Sheffield United, confirmed their Premier League returns having secured the two automatic promotion places offered by the Championship.
The playoff process - pitting the teams in third to sixth off against each other - set up a Wembley final between Luton Town and Coventry. In a thrilling final Luton secured a penalty shoot-out win, ensuring that they return to the top tier of English football for the first time since 1992.
The playoff final is often billed as ‘the most valuable game in the world’ given the financial impact of playing in the Premier League, which includes parachute payments if immediately relegated again.
Luton clinch Premier League place
Midfielder Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu has achieved a remarkable feat in making it to the top flight. Mpanzu has become the first player to go from non-league football to the top flight with the same team. Ahead of the game, Mpanzu humorously acknowledged, “Yeah man, not a lot of people do it... Well, nobody has done it yet.”
Mpanzu joined Luton in 2013 on loan from West Ham United, and since then, he has played a pivotal role in the team’s ascent from non-league football to the Premier League . Former Luton manager John Still praised Mpanzu’s achievement, emphasizing the remarkable journey he has undergone. Initially skeptical about Luton and its modest stadium, Kenilworth Road, Mpanzu now recognizes how everything fell into place over time.
Luton’s path to the Championship Playoff Final included a thrilling 2-0 victory over Sunderland in the semifinals. Promotion sees Luton match Wimbledon’s record of going from non-league football to the top flight within nine years. The revenue windfall of at least £170 million ($215 million) over the next three seasons further underscores the significance of the club’s remarkable journey.
Despite the criticisms leveled against Kenilworth Road, some see it as a unique advantage for Luton in the Premier League. The unfamiliarity and challenging atmosphere it presents to visiting teams could work in Luton’s favor, as Still explained. Luton’s planned new stadium at Power Court, scheduled for completion in 2026, offers an exciting glimpse into the club’s future.
Luton Town has experienced memorable moments throughout its history, with David Pleat’s victory dance and Brian Stein’s winning goal against Arsenal in the 1988 League Cup final standing out. Despite facing challenges and relegation from the top flight in 1992, Luton now rejoin England’s elite.