How big of a factor is the threat of relegation in the competition?
Jamlang: The prospect of relegation is a large ingredient of what keeps the league interesting at all times. It means that just because you aren’t challenging for a title, you can take your foot off the gas.
Relegation can be very costly for a club. Playing in the first division allows for a bigger budget, more exposure, and the chance to compete at the highest level – all of which will disappear if you finish at the foot of the table. Climbing back to the premier division will not be easy either, as it will likely lead to a need to rebuild. As every footballer wants to be able to play against the best at all times, relegation could mean a potential exodus of key players from your team. The title race is where most eyes will be glued, but the drama of a relegation scrap is equally as compelling.
Fenix: Since only one team will be relegated to Division Two, that team will have the dubious distinction of being the first team relegated from the UFL in this new age of televised Philippine football.
Financial realities of Division Two football would naturally factor prominently in the manager and team owner’s mind. Respect (or the lack thereof, if relegated) would not be far off the players’ minds as well.
Personally, the thought of being demoted from playing in Rizal Memorial Football Stadium to the cavernous Turf @ BGC should be motivation enough to avoid relegation.