The Premier League this season has been unpredictable, full of shocks and transfers that have shocked the World. From Torres to Carroll, to Holloway and Adam, the Premier League has shown this year why it is the BEST league in the World. In this blog, I will make my predictions for the rest of the season.
Title Race: After 24 games, Manchester United are top of the Premier league standings. Sir Alex’s team are 5 points clear of their nearest competitors Arsenal and have remained unbeaten so far this season, despite Rooney misfiring. Dimitar Berbatov is finally showing the form that made Man United sign him for £30.5 million, while Nani, Ryan Giggs and Nemanja Vidic also impressing. The only problem though is that they still have to visit Chelsea, Liverpool and Arsenal away and also a home game against Manchester City. Despite this, they should surely have enough ability to win the Premier League.
In second place is Arsenal. This season looks like they will finally get their hands on a trophy, with them being in the League Cup final against Birmingham City and Wenger now deciding to play a mixture of youth and first teamers in the FA Cup. Despite the success of Marouane Chamakh and Jack Wilshire and now Laurent Koscielny is starting to be the player Wenger had signed, there are some weaknesses. Goalkeeper was an issue until young Polish goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny came in and has shown his ability to keep out the unconvincing pair of Manuel Almunia and fellow Pole Lukasz Fabianski. In the final standings though, I expect them to finish 3rd but they will be title contenders until the final day.
Now to probably the richest club in the World. Manchester City have spent millions of pounds trying to assemble their ‘perfect squad’. In a surprisingly quiet January transfer window, the Manchester side only made 1 acquisition in signing Wolfsburg striker Edin Dzeko for a fee of £27 million. He could easily have been the missing link in the Manchester City side with only two other world class strikers in Carlos Tevez and Mario Balotelli. They are currently 9 points off fierce rivals Manchester United and I think that they will claim a Champions League place, but will fizzle out of the title race, for this year at least.
After splashing out £68 million on transfer deadline day, Chelsea will be under pressure to succeed. After smashing the transfer record to sign Fernando Torres from Liverpool for £50 million and David Luiz for £18 million plus Nemanja Matic from Benfica, they should up the tempo and try to win the title and achieve Roman Abramovich’s goal of winning the Champions League. They were favourites to win the Premier League after being 5 points clear in October, but then a dreadful run of form, with only 1 win in 10 matches have put them 10 points behind United. I think that they will be title contenders but that run of form has probably cost them the title.
European Race: Tottenham Hotspur are big outsiders for the title, so this is why I have put them in this section. Tottenham in my view have 2 of the best players in the Premier League in Welsh winger Gareth Bale and Dutch playmaker Rafael Van Der Vaart. They also have probably one of the strongest squads in the Premier League, with players such as Roman Pavlyuchenko, Wilson Palacios, Younes Kaboul and Steven Pienaar not even getting into the starting eleven. I think they will finish 5th, but will battle with Manchester City for 4th spot.
After sacking Roy Hodgson and replacing him with Kenny Dalglish as caretaker boss, King Kenny’s beloved Liverpool are finally starting to pick up some form. Raul Meireles is now justifying why Liverpool splashed out on him in the summer and with the signings of Luis Suarez from Ajax for £23 million and Newcastle’s Andy Carroll for £35 million to replace Fernando Torres, they should now comfortably expect to finish in the top 6.
For the final Europa League spot, it is between 3 teams. After spending £30 million on Darrent Bent, Jean II Makoun and Kyle Walker, Gerard Houllier’s Aston Villa side should be confident in overturning a dreadful start to the season by finishing in 7th place. Also competing is Sunderland, despite the loss of star man Darren Bent, have got Asamoah Gyan ready to fill his boots and Sulley Muntari and Stephane Sessegnon could be inspired signings. The final team in this race is Everton. The team usually starts slow to the season and they pick up a lot of momentum in the second half. However, no quality strikers and a lack of money to sign one in the transfer window could be costly.
Mid Table: Owen Coyle has been linked with managerial positions at Liverpool after doing exceptionly well with my beloved Bolton Wanderers. Johan Elmander has finally shown why Gary Megson brought him to the club and Kevin Davies got his long awaited England cap at the age of 33. Mark Hughes’ Fulham side should be safe if they convert more draws into wins, having drawn 11 times in the Premier League this year. Blackpool have been the revelation of the year. Barmy boss Ian Holloway and star midfielder Charlie Adam have been inspirational this year. They should survive comfortably. Stoke City and Blackburn Rovers, the two long ball specialists, should also survive, despite the latter club’s dreadful decision to sack Sam Allardyce.
Relegation: With six clubs in contention for relegation, it should be very close, with possibly more than 40 points needed to guarantee survival. The only reason Newcastle United are in this is due to the sale of Andy Carroll without any replacement. I can’t see Shola Ameobi or Leon Best having the same impact as Carroll. Even though they had an excellent start to the season, West Brom have hit a dip and their performances have been below par, leaving them in 16th. However, the goals of Peter Odemwingie should keep them up. League Cup finalists Birmingham City have also struggled this season. They have scored only 21 goals so far, the lowest in the Premier League and do not have a potent force upfront. Their season depends on the form of new signing Obafemi Martins. Now to the bottom three. 18th place Wigan Athletic are my favourites to go down. The squad is of Premier League quality, with some players such as Charles N’Zogbia and Hugo Rodallega should be playing at a better club. The problem is their manager Roberto Martinez. The team is too unpredictable and he has made some poor decisions e.g. the signing of Franco Di Santo. Second bottom Wolves have been unlucky this season, highlighted when they didn’t get a point away to Manchester City. They should be able to stay up and Nenad Milijas is turning into the player he was at Red Star Belgrade. Only one team has stayed up after being bottom at Christmas and West Ham United hope to be the second team. The team has underachieved massively under Avram Grant and many signings, such as Pablo Barrera have struggled to adjust to Premier League life. They will be in and around the relegation zone.
Promotion: In the N.Power Championship, I expect QPR to go up in top place. They have started to show a lot of promise and look set to return to the top flight after a long period away. I think that second place and the play off places are all so close that anyone of these teams could go up. Norwich City, Welsh pair Cardiff City and Swansea City, Midlands pair Leicester City and Nottingham Forest, Leeds United, Watford, Reading, and Burnley. Whatever happens, it should be an exciting finale.
- Manchester United
- Manchester City
- Tottenham Hotspur
- Aston Villa
- Bolton Wanderers
- Stoke City
- Blackburn Rovers
- West Brom
- Birmingham City
- Newcastle United
- West Ham United
- Wigan Athletic
Please can you comment on article and tell me what you think about my predictions and your own predictions.
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