sport news How are the Premier League's basement dwellers shaping up in their bid for ...

Liverpool's seemingly unassailable 19-point lead at the top of the table has rendered this year's Premier League title race all but over.

Fear not though, football fans. There is much still to play for and at the bottom of the table it is shaping up to be quite the end to the season.

And this weekend, with the winter break imminent, could go a long way to deciding the destinies of the six clubs who look to be cut adrift from the rest.

Bournemouth host Aston Villa, with the visitors just two points above their opponents in 18th.

And West Ham entertain 15th-placed Brighton, with the hosts only out of the relegation zone on goal difference. Elsewhere Norwich go to Newcastle while Watford host Everton.

With the six at the bottom five points behind the five clubs locked on 30 points, Sportsmail assesses their chances of beating the dreaded drop.

At the bottom of the Premier League table it is shaping up to be quite the end to the season

At the bottom of the Premier League table it is shaping up to be quite the end to the season

15. Brighton - 25 points (-7 GD)

Graham Potter has won plenty of admirers for his footballing philosophy, but it has fairly slipped under the radar that Brighton are in freefall.

Managerial comings and goings elsewhere have dominated headlines, but it's the unfashionable Seagulls who are suddenly looking over their shoulders.

They have won only twice since November 2 after a victory over Norwich sent them into the dizzying heights of eighth and dreaming of more opportunities to come.

Only wins over a dishevelled Arsenal and a feeble Bournemouth have followed over what has become a miserable winter run.

Graham Potter's Brighton side have won only twice since November 2 following a strong start

Graham Potter's Brighton side have won only twice since November 2 following a strong start

But they have lost no more than three in a row during this period; the rot has never really truly set in. Their next two, however, are vital, heading to West Ham and then hosting Watford later next month.

Potter has been boosted by the permanent acquisition of Aaron Mooy, but there has been little else forthcoming on the transfer front this month.

Goals are beginning to become an issue, with just 27 scored in 24 games so far. But their goal difference is far superior to those around them. The feeling is that they will have just enough about them to escape. 

The feeling is that the Seagulls have just enough about them to escape the dreaded drop

The feeling is that the Seagulls have just enough about them to escape the dreaded drop

16. Aston Villa - 25 points (-14)

If Dean Smith's side could turn in performances like they did against Leicester week in week out, then they wouldn't be in this position.

Perhaps, though, their two-legged semi-final triumph over the top four challengers signifies an upturn in form. Jack Grealish has been immense, goalkeeper Orjan Nyland was outstanding in the Carbao Cup and they have been significantly boosted by the £10m arrival of striker Mbwana Samatta from Genk.

Villa have followed four straight defeats with three wins in their last six in the league.

And the crucial victories have come against those around them, which can be doubly as vital as taking points when you don't expect to.

If Aston Villa could perform like they did against Leicester regularly, they wouldn't be in spot

If Aston Villa could perform like they did against Leicester regularly, they wouldn't be in spot

Victories over Norwich on Boxing Day, and then at Burnley on New Year's Day and a comeback win over Watford last weekend have transformed their outlook after a particularly gloomy December.

They now have daylight between them and the bottom three - albeit only two points.

Tyrone Mings is enjoying an excellent debut campaign at Villa Park, while Grealish has really come into his own in the absence of John McGinn in recent weeks.

No other club in the relegation dogfight boasts a player in such fine nick as the 24-year-old, who has seven league goals this season. If he fires his boyhood club to safety, it may prove to be the last thing he does in a Villa shirt.

No other club in the relegation dogfight boasts a player in such fine nick as Jack Grealish

No other club in the relegation dogfight boasts a player in such fine nick as Jack Grealish

17. West Ham - 23 points (-13)

The pressure is mounting on West Ham. No win in four league games has seen them sucked into a relegation battle.

The Hammers admitted earlier this week that Premier League survival is a financial 'necessity' for their future as they revealed a pre-tax annual loss of £28.8million.

With that mind they need to get points on the board, and fast. Saturday's

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