In the past few years, newly promoted sides have actually managed to stay up and avoid the dreaded one-season stand in the Premier League. The most notable achievement was Reading's 2006-07 campaign, who just missed out on a European place in their first ever top-flight season (too bad they couldn't score four more goals to remain there this season).
This definitely gives Hull City hope as they play top-flight football for the first time in club history. With the likes of Dean Windass and reigning club player of the year Michael Turner coming off amazing seasons, look for Hull to at the very least avoid relegation. Here are my remaining predictions for the 2008-09 season...
Relegated: Fulham, Bolton, Stoke City. After coming close to being relegated last season, Fulham and Bolton are likely to go down this year as questions surround both Fulham's Americanized line up and Gary Megson's penchant for flirting with the relegation zone.
Stoke City waited 23 years to return to the top flight but will wait only a few months to return to the Championship as the team's lack of Premier League experience will lead to it's downfall.
Champions: Chelsea or Manchester United. Following last year's lack of hardware, look for new manager Luis Felipe Scolari and returning captain Frank Lampard to push Chelsea towards a title and possibly a trip to the Stadio Olimpico in May for the Champions League Final.
However, this will be no easy task as Manchester United seek to carry on from last season, when they beat the Blues for both major trophies. Both sides are very strong and will most likely dominate all three domestic competitions.
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