5 biggest stars who got relegated this season

andros townsend
Townsend’s form for Newcastle helped him get recalled to the England squad for the upcoming Euro
Naveen Ravi Joseph

Dropping down to a lower league is always a painful experience for any club. The obvious loss of money associated with the top flight can impact the status of the club. However, the biggest issue for any club that gets relegated is dealing with the loss of players.

Often, clubs that get relegated lose their best performers to clubs that stay in the top tier. For example, when Burnley were relegated at the end of last season, they lost Danny Ings to Liverpool and Kieran Trippier to Tottenham.

Like at the end of every other season, many star players faced relegation with their teams and here are the five biggest stars who got relegated this season.

Note: Giuseppe Rossi was relegated with Levante, however, he was on loan from Fiorentina.

#1 Georginio Wijnaldum

Wijnaldum scored 11 goals this season

Former PSV captain, Georginio Wijnaldum, was the latest Dutch player to join Newcastle’s Dutch contingent which already consisted of Daryl Janmaat, Vurnon Anita and Siem de Jong.

Wijnaldum left PSV after winning the league title with them and he was also named the Dutch footballer of the year for 2014-15. A player of his quality was a big addition for Newcastle, but even his quality couldn’t save them from the drop.

The 25-year-old was on occasions the lone warrior for the Toons and kept them in the race for Premier League safety for as long as he could. He finished the season as their top scorer with 11 goals and also assisted 5 more this term.

His most notable performance of the season came in a 6-2 thrashing of Norwich City in which he scored 4 goals. He also played a crucial role in Newcastle’s surprise wins over Liverpool and Tottenham in December.

#2 Ron-Robert Zieler

Zieler was a World Cup winner with Germany

Bastian Schweinsteiger was the first German to play for Manchester United, but before the former Bayern Munich ace arrived at Old Trafford, United had another German in their ranks in Ron-Robert Zieler.

Zieler played for Man Utd’s reserves, but never featured for their first team and in 2010, he joined Bundesliga club Hannover 96. The German was a regular for Hannover for the past six years and his excellent performance earned him a call-up to the German national team.

He was one of the three keepers who were called up for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and he earned a winners medal with Germany. Although he didn’t play during the tournament, getting called up ahead of the likes of Marc-Andre Ter Stegen and Bernd Leno is a big achievement.

His present club, Hannover, was the first team to be relegated from Bundesliga this season and on April 27th, he announced that he would leave the team.

#3 Moussa Sissoko

Sissoko is part of the France squad for the upcoming Euro

It’s a well-known fact that France have one of the best talent pools in the world at the moment. The French have incredible depth and quality in all areas of the pitch and that makes it extremely difficult for Deschamps to pick his side even if he relies solely on their form.

However, there are certain players the French manager prefers in his side irrespective of the club they play for or their form throughout the season. Examples of such players are Newcastle’s Moussa Sissoko or Andre-Pierre Gignac who plays for Tigres in Mexico.

Sissoko didn’t have a memorable season with Newcastle and finished the season with just 1 goal and 7 assists. However his quality and versatility are there for everyone to see and that’s probably why it will be extremely hard for Newcastle to keep him next season.

#4 Kevin Großkreutz

kevin grosskreutz
Großkreutz had a season to forget after leaving Dortmund

Kevin Großkreutz was a fan favourite at Borussia Dortmund as he was a local lad who also supported the club. He was part of Jurgen Klopp’s teams that won back to back league titles and was also a starter in the UEFA Champions League final in 2013.

The German international was often Klopp’s utility man and was deployed in a wide variety of positions. During the 2013-14 season, Großkreutz played many games in a right-back role because of an injury to Piszczek and his good performance in that role earned him a berth in Germany’s World Cup squad.

Although Großkreutz didn’t play in Brazil in 2014, he was a World Cup winner.

The 27-year-old was deemed surplus to requirements at Dortmund when Thomas Tuchel took over and on transfer deadline day in the summer transfer window of 2015, he was engineering a move to Galatasaray. The move was not sanctioned by FIFA because Galatasaray’s paperwork didn’t arrive on time and hence, he didn’t play football till January 2016.

He signed for Stuttugart in January without playing a single game for Galatasaray, but even he couldn’t help the 2006-07 Bundesliga winners from getting relegated.

#5 Andros Townsend

Townsend’s heroics couldn’t save Newcastle from getting relegated

Townsend was one of the many English players who were making an impact at Spurs. He didn’t start a league game for Spurs in the recently concluded season and due to his growing frustration, he got into a touchline argument with the club’s fitness coach. Although he apologised, this led to him falling out of favour at the club.

Eventually, the Englishman was sold to Newcastle who were desperately in need of players to try and save their Premier League status. Townsend walked into Newcastle’s starting XI and made a very good impression in the few games he played there.

In the 13 games Townsend played for the Toons, he scored 4 goals and provided 2 assists. His sublime goal against Crystal Palace towards the end of the season gave Newcastle a glimmer of hope, but in the end, they fell short.

Although his club got relegated, his form for Newcastle helped him get recalled to the England squad for the upcoming Euro.

Edited by Staff Editor


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