It is also very likely that my own club, Limerick FC, will take part in the relegation/promotion play-off against as they seem destined to finish second from bottom of the Premier Division.
To find some hope I looked back over previous playoffs. It made for unhappy reading. The table below shows the outcome of the last 11 relegation/promotion playoffs (there were no playoffs in 2017 and 2008).
In the last 11 years, the First Division team won the playoff. The odds would seem stacked against Limerick this season. The remarkable success of the promoted teams may reflect the momentum going into the game, where from a First Division gets a boost from achieving a play-off place while the Premier Division team is deflated by not avoiding a play-off place.
This may be a similar effect in the English Championship where the promotion play-offs are contested by teams finishing third to sixth at the end of the season. In the last 10 seasons, the third place team was promoted 50% of the time.