Which Premier League team has thrown away the most points from one season to the next?

Leeds picked up 21 points fewer than in 2020/21 but the figure is still some way short of the record Premier League points decline - and the clubs who posted it may well surprise you.

Leeds United staved off relegation on a dramatic conclusion to their Premier League campaign on Sunday, beating Brentford to condemn Burnley to the drop.

Their final-day heroics couldn't mask a stunning decline from the Elland Road side, though (even allowing for all the second-season syndrome talk), with the West Yorkshire outfit posting 21 fewer points than in 2020/21.

It saw them slide down the table from ninth the previous campaign to 17th. However, their drop-off in points is not even the biggest fall for a Leeds side, let alone the Premier League.

Planet Sport looks back on some remarkable dips in points from season to season - and some incredible leaps.

On the slide

Jesse Marsch's side (should we even call them that when in effect it is still Marcelo Bielsa's side?) guaranteed their Premier League survival on Sunday amid wild scenes at the Brentford Community Stadium.

Few were expecting Leeds to struggle this term after finishing an impressive ninth in their first season back with the big boys.

Nevertheless, injuries, a love of gung-ho football and a collective loss of heads in the closing stages of the campaign resulted in Leeds needing a result on the final day to stave off a return to the Championship.

The West Yorkshire side finished the campaign on 38 points, 21 fewer than 2020/21, a decrease of 35.6%.

Despite their impressive decline, it is still nine points better off than in 1995/96, however. Targeting a title tilt off the back of a fifth place the previous season, Howard Wilkinson's side finished 30 points worse off. That included a run of 11 defeats in 16 to round off the campaign.

Biggest season on season points decreases

  Team Season Pos Pts Season Pos Pts Decrease %
1= Lecester 2015/16 1 81 2016/17 12 44 37 45.7
1= Chelsea 2014/15 1 87 2015/16 10 50 37 42.5
3 Sheff Utd 2019/20 9 54 2020/21 20 23 31 57.4
4= Ipswich 2000/01 5 66 2001/02 18 36 30 45.5
4= Leeds 1994/95 5 73 1995/96 13 43 30 41.1
4= Liverpool 2019/20 1 99 2020/21 3 69 30 30
7 Blackburn 1994/95 1 89 1995/96 7 61 28 31.5
8 Liverpool 2001/02 2 80 2002/03 5 54 26 32.5
9 Man Utd 2012/13 1 89 2013/14 7 64 25 28
10= Newcastle 1996/97 2 68 1997/98 13 44 24 37
10= Newcastle 2011/12 5 65 2012/13 16 41 24 36.9
10= Nottm For 1995/96 9 58 1996/97 20 34 24 41.4

Keeping up the Yorkshire theme, Sheffield United and Huddersfield are another two clubs that have suffered from second-season syndrome in recent years. The Blades' measly 23 points in 2020/21 was a massive 31 points worse than their tally the previous season. Not surprisingly they were relegated.

Huddersfield's 21-point decline from 2017/18 to 2018/19, meanwhile, represented a 73% decrease in points gained.

The fluctuators

Leicester City celebrate Premier League title May16

Sheffield United's 31-point dip puts them third in terms of season to season drop-offs, with Liverpool's 30-point decline from their title win of 2019/20 to 2020/21 also notable.

However, the two clubs come in some way behind Leicester and Chelsea when it comes to dramatic points losses. Thankfully, for the duo, they also top the table when it comes to massive improvements, too.

Leicester's 5000/1 title win has been well documented, with their rise from 14th the previous season to Premier League champions the stuff of legend.

It took an increase of 40 points to get them there, an incredible improvement of 97.6% on the previous campaign under Nigel Pearson.

But it is not the Premier League's largest points increase from season to season. That accolade actually goes to Chelsea, who after posting 50 points in 2015/16 under Jose Mourinho and then Gus Hiddink, went on to rack up an incredible 93 under Antonio Conte to win the title in 2016/17.

Not surprisingly, such marked improvements in form were followed by a similarly sizable drop-off in points. Chelsea could only muster 70 the following campaign to finish fifth, while Leicester shed 37 points on their way to 12th place.

Wildly fluctuating seasons are nothing new to the Blues, however, with the 2015/16 season having followed straight on from a title-winning campaign that saw them secure 87 points.

The improvers

West Ham United manager David Moyes celebrates victory after the UEFA Europa League round of sixteen second leg match at the London Stadium

While Leicester and Chelsea's dramatic improvements resulted in titles, it hasn't been the case for Liverpool. The Reds have just completed a fifth campaign in which they improved 20-plus points on the previous season.

Their 23-point improvement on 2020/21 wasn't enough to overhaul Manchester City, continuing a theme which has seen them post increases of between 21 and 24 points without being able to deliver a title.

But for all Liverpool's fluctuating points totals, it is West Ham who boast the third highest points increase in the Premier League era.

Biggest season on season points increases

  Team Season Pos Pts Season Pos Pts Increase %
1 Chelsea 2015/16 10 50 2016/17 1 93 43 86
2 Leicester 2014/15 14 41 2015/16 1 81 40 97.6
3 West Ham 2019/20 16 39 2020/21 6 65 26 72.2
4 Liverpool 2004/05 5 58 2005/05 3 82 24 41.4
5= Liverpool 2012/13 7 61 2013/14 2 84 23 37.7
5= Liverpool 2020/21 3 69 2021/22 2 92 23 33.3
7= Liverpool 2017/18 4 75 2018/19 2 97 22 29.3
7= Everton 2003/04 17 39 2004/05 4 61 22 56.4
7= Man City 2016/17 3 78 2017/18 1 100 22 28
10 Liverpool 2000/01 3 69 2001/02 2 80 21 30.4

The Irons' 65 points in 2020/21 was 26 up on their previous season's output, a rise of 72.2%.

It was the second time manager David Moyes had masterminded a seasonal improvement of more than 50%, with the Scot having steered Everton to fifth place in 2005 having improved their points tally from 39 to 61 (56.4%).

However, before Moyes gets too carried away, he was also responsible for a 25-point dip in Manchester United's points tally after taking over from Sir Alex Ferguson in 2013, the Red Devils biggest-ever fall-off in points.

READ MORE: Pep Guardiola hails 'special' Man City team after dramatic comeback seals Premier League title

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