Man Utd are more likely to be relegated than win the 2019/20 Premier League

Norwich City v Manchester United - Premier League

Manchester United are in a serious rut right now.

Drawing 2-2 at home to newly promoted Aston Villa means they've won just four of their opening 14 Premier League fixtures and find themselves languishing in ninth place.

You get the feeling that if this form came under the reigns of David Moyes, Louis van Gaal or Jose Mourinho that United fans would have been calling for blood long ago.

However, whether you agree with it or not, there seems to be greater patience with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at the wheel and solace with the fact this is the start of a long-term project.

But let's not sugarcoat the situation, United are on course for a tally of 54 points. That's the same that Everton managed on their way to an eighth-place finish last season.

United's difficult start

It's also the worst start that United have made to a top-flight season since the 1980s and they didn't even finish in the top half that year. It's incredibly worrying times.

And there's no finer way to illustrate the direness of the situation at Old Trafford than by running all these statistics past the boffins at FiveThirtyEight.

They use data to make predictions and produce probabilities on anything from economics, politics, culture, science & healthy and - of course - sport.

FBL-ENG-PR-MAN UTD-ASTON VILLA

More likely to be relegated

On their website, you can find a Premier League table that is adjusted after every game to reflect the likelihood of every team achieving things like winning the league or reaching the top four.

And it also gives the percentage chance of each team being relegated, which astonishingly means more to United than you'd usually expect.

That's because the data analysts give United a 2% chance of being relegated this season. 

By comparison, they're given less than a 1% chance of winning the Premier League title and a marginally better forecast of 1% itself for reaching the top four. How times change.

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In other words, Solskjaer is more likely to lead United on a historic nosedive into the Championship than he is lifting them above Manchester City, Leicester City and Liverpool.

GIVEMESPORT'S Kobe Tong says

So, are United going down this season? Absolutely not. No chance. Nope, nope, nope.

Even if the Red Devils continued their diabolical form, Ed Woodward would bring the axe down on Solskjaer before things became too dire and would quickly steady the ship with an interim boss.

But I must admit, United going down to the Championship does seem to bear similar probability to them sensationally overhauling a 22-point deficit to the top of the table. 

Sheffield United v Manchester United - Premier League

If we return to the realms of reality, though, it appears that United are most realistically on course for something like seventh or eighth. Akin to Chelsea in 2015/16, if you like.

Barring an all-out spending spree in January, eight months of poor results have given me little reason to suggest Solskjaer can get United anywhere near the top four in his first full season.

Get used to mid-table, United fans.

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