Burnley Player Ben Mee Celebrating

The 2023/24 Premier League campaign starts on Friday 11th August and the opener is a fascinating clash between the defending champions, Man City, and the side that won last year’s Championship title, Burnley. As well as being a battle of the champions, this also pits master and apprentice against each other, with Pep Guardiola and former City captain and legend Vincent Kompany in the dugouts.

Of the three newly promoted sides it is Burnley who are most fancied to stay up this term. But who else came up to the Premier League alongside the Clarets? How can we expect these three teams to get on and when was the last time they played in the top flight of English football?


  • Championship position last season – 1st, 101 points
  • Relegation odds – 5/2
  • Odds to stay up – 2/7
  • Our prediction – 14th
  • Seasons out of the top flight – 1
  • Last season in top tier – 2021/22 (18th, 35 points)
  • Highest top-flight finish – 1st (1921, 1960)

Burnley romped to the Championship title last term, playing attractive football and amassing over 100 points. Very strong at the back, they lost just three times and also made the quarter final of the FA Cup – where they were mercilessly battered 6-0 by Man City! Winning the title last term brought them an instant return to the Premier League, where they had competed for six seasons.

Managed in the PL by Sean Dyche, for the most part, this small club were big overachievers and finished seventh in the top flight in 2017/18. They also finished 10th in 2020 and these were incredible achievements given their tiny budget.

They will be hoping that this latest spell in the top tier goes more like that, than it did following their previous promotion in 2013/14. They finished second in the Championship that term but were relegated in 19th in 2014/15. They then won the Championship title with ease the season after and there is certainly a temptation to view them as something of a yo-yo club.

They should have more money to spend this term but will be cautious and will want to maintain the togetherness that helped them do so well last term. All in all though, we think the Clarets will have enough to stay up.

Sheffield United

  • Championship position last season – 2nd, 91 points
  • Relegation odds – 8/13
  • Odds to stay up – 6/5
  • Our prediction – 18th
  • Seasons out of the top flight – 2
  • Last season in top tier – 2020/21 (20th, 23 points)
  • Highest top-flight finish – 1st (1898)

The Blades are a big club, or certainly they have been historically. Bramall Lane is one of the few remaining really old school stadia out there and their attendance last term was not far shy of 29,000. They enjoy great, loud, support and will hope to make Bramall Lane a fortress as they try and establish themselves as a Premier League side.

Last time they were up they took the division by storm and for a while during that 2019/20 campaign it looked like they might nick a European place. In the end they finished ninth and made the quarters of the FA Cup, both fabulous achievements. Chris Wilder’s overlapping (and underlapping) centre backs were a revelation and even Pep took note. They ended just two points behind Arsenal and only lost 12 times all season.

Sadly they very much came a cropper a year on, suffering from second-season syndrome and slumping to 20th, managing just 23 points. They almost came straight back up but missed out in the play-offs after finishing fifth in 2021/22 but they were not to be denied last term.

The Blades played in League One in 2018 so in a sense will simply be happy to be in the PL. They have appeared in the top flight many times in the past 50 years or so without ever really establishing themselves and that has to be the aim this time around. Sadly, we see them coming up short and boss Paul Heckingbottom could be one of the first Premier League managers to leave his job in 2023/24.

Luton Town

  • Championship position last season – 3rd (won play-offs), 80 points
  • Relegation odds – 1/3
  • Odds to stay up – 9/4
  • Our prediction – 20th
  • Seasons out of the top flight – 31
  • Last season in top tier – 1992, 20th (42 points in a 22-team division)
  • Highest top-flight finish – 7th (1987)

If Sheffield United fans will be partying simply because their side are in the PL, that is nothing compared to the feelings Luton supporters will have. The Hatters were playing non-league football in 2014 and over the past 25 years have been on an almost non-stop rollercoaster ride through the various divisions.

In 1992 they were relegated from the old First Division, thus missing out on the first season of the Premier League. Since then, they have been promoted or relegated a further 12 times. Between 2004/05 (which they began in the third tier) and 2009/10, when they were in the fifth-tier Conference Premier, only once did they not change division at the end of the season.

Since winning the fifth-tier title in 2014 with 101 points Luton’s progress has been steady, serene and rather miraculous. Stability has to be the name of the game for them now but sadly for fans that would arguably include another spell in the Championship. They cannot afford to overspend trying to stay up, only to then plummet down the pyramid.

Their tiny, iconic ground is not fit for the Premier League and nor is their budget. However, they are clearly doing so much right off the pitch and many neutrals will wish them well. That, alone, seems unlikely to be enough to see them safe. However, with a new ground in the planning and at least one year of huge PL revenue (plus subsequent parachute payments if they go down), Luton could well slowly establish themself as a side in the top 20, or at the very least, top 44, in the country.


By cf378