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The Group Chat Discusses Relegation Candidates, Liverpool, VAR & More

The Group Chat Discusses Relegation Candidates, Liverpool, VAR & More

In the latest episode of the Group Chat via our partners at Betfair, the likes of Alan McInally, Will Perry and Sam Rosbottom discuss some of the current trending topics in world football.

Here, they discuss the promoted teams’ poor starts to the 2023/24 Premier League season, Liverpool’s early title chances and VAR’s recent controversies while also delivering the Group Chat Acca with all proceeds going to the National MS Society and Alzheimer's Society should they win.

Will Anybody Beat Derby’s All-Time Low Points Record?

Back in the 2007/08 season, Derby County set an unwanted record of being the side that recorded the all-time low Premier League points tally, accumulating just 11 points from 38 matches, with the Rams’ sole victory of that season coming at the expense of Newcastle United via a 1-0 scoreline.

Prior to this, Sunderland had held the record following a dismal 2005/06 season that saw them manage just 15 points. Here, we take a look at whether any of the newly promoted sides will beat Derby’s record, with none of Burnley, Luton Town or Sheffield United managing to record a win in any of their first five outings of the current campaign.

Header logoPremier League

Team logoLuton
Team logoBurnley
Team logoSheff Utd
Last updated 24/05/2024

Burnley’s Start to the Season

Last season, Vincent Kompany and Burnley received a lot of plaudits for their playstyle and performances as they eased to the Championship title, earning 101 points, seeing them finish just five points away from the all-time points tally record of 106 points set by Reading in 2005/06.

The Clarets have so far underwhelmed in this season’s edition of the Premier League, however, they are a side that will be looking to gel, having acquired 15 players in the summer transfer window, while facing tricky tests in the shapes of Manchester City (h), Aston Villa (h), Tottenham (h), Nottingham Forest (a) and Manchester United (h) so far.

Are Liverpool Title Contenders?

So far this season, Liverpool have been in superb form, having managed to achieve 16 points from their opening six matches of the season, extending their Premier League unbeaten run to 17 matches, the longest of any side in English football’s top-flight at present.

The Anfield club memorably won their first Premier League title in 2019/20 under Jurgen Klopp, breaking a 30-year drought, could they be in the mix to challenge Manchester City and stop Pep Guardiola’s side from winning an unprecedented fourth league title in a row?

VAR Controversy

At the weekend, VAR was at the forefront of discussions once again following some controversial refereeing decisions.

During the North London derby, Arsenal were awarded a fortuitous penalty following a Cristian Romero handball from close range, gifting the Gunners an opportunity to take a 2-1 lead from the penalty spot, making many question why Manchester United’s Alejandro Garnacho wasn’t awarded a penalty for the same offence committed by Romero during their clash with Spurs on matchday two.

On top of this, Luton Town were also a benefactor of a controversial penalty decision, with Joao Gomes adjudged to have had his arm in an unnatural position in their 1-1 draw with Wolves, gifting Carlton Morris a simple opportunity to level the score at 1-1 via a spot kick. This incensed Gary O’Neil who referred to the ruling that if the ball strikes another part of a player's body first that the handball is effectively nulled and void.

Take a look at what the Group Chat had to say about some of this season’s VAR decisions below: