George Elek of the Not the Top 20 podcast expects both Luton and Coventry City to compete in the Premier League next season ahead of play-off final.
Coventry City and Luton Town are not just there to make up the numbers in the Premier League next season should they gain promotion from the Championship, according to EFL expert George Elek.
Speaking on the Not the Top 20 podcast, he claims he can “see absolutely no reason why” either side should be favourites to finish bottom with the bookmakers next season, but knows they will be.
2023 Championship play-off final details
The final at Wembley Stadium kicks-off at 4.45pm and represents a chance for the Sky Blues to return to the Premier League after over 20 years away.
However, Luton have never played in the Premier League, having suffered relegation from the top flight back in 1992, the year the Premiership was founded.
Coventry saw off Middlesbrough in the semi-finals to book their place, whereas Luton came back from a first leg deficit to beat Sunderland.
Are Coventry and Luton good enough for the Premier League?
George Elek of the Not the Top 20 podcast believes many are writing the two sides off too soon, ane expects them to compete in the league next season, he said: “This is unquestionably the romantic final, where it’s two clubs who have fallen on harder times who have basically managed to rise back up to this precipice of, in Coventry’s case returning to the Premier League, and for Luton getting into the Premier League for the first time.
It is incredible, and I think given what’s happened in the past, and the great story surrounding their ascents, you’re completely right where it’s hard to know who to root for here.
“I do think we can get a little bit lost in the narrative here. I think it does a disservice to what they are right now, which is two incredibly strong, good Championship sides.
“I’ve already heard this is a play-off final where the loser will finish bottom next season. Basically whoever wins this game will automatically be one-to-four favourites for the drop next season from the Premier League, which is incredibly short.
“I think maybe we’re not giving them enough credit, and maybe there’s not enough talk about how good these sides are.
“These are two sides who by any Championship measure have been incredibly strong over the last few weeks, if not the season, [and] have players who are fully deserving of their opportunity to play in the top flight.
“All being well, if they manage to retain key personnel, having been promoted, I see absolutely no reason why – off the back of a season where none of the three promoted teams in the Championship last season have been promoted back the season after – I don’t see any reason why they would be outclassed, or akin to a competition winner if they get there.”
Can either side remain in the Premier League?
It will still be incredibly difficult to adapt and survive in the top flight, but there is no reason to rule it out as a possibility, as many are doing.
Their solid defensive foundation and transitional style of play may well suit the bottom end of the Premier League, and with a sprinkling of more quality signings, who knows?
The two teams are unfashionable and have not been in the top flight for so long that they are being unfairly written off before they have even got there. Let’s hope whichever side manages to secure their place gives more than just a good account of themselves in the Premier League next season.
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