We’re now at the eve of the new Premier League season, 3 months after the last ball was kicked. Although everybody in the league has spent a lot of money I still expect the same teams to be competing for the title. I expect the competition to be stronger but I also said that last season which wasn’t the case. City have spent over £200 million to a team with a potent attack already. Man Utd have added the second top scorer from last season along with strengthening their midfield and defence. Arsenal have also spent big on a striker and have looked good in pre season. I would be very disappointed if my team United are not in the title race. My heart is telling me that we will win it this year, Mourinho always wins the league in his second season with a club and we have someone who can convert those missed chances. But my head is telling me that the defence and midfield is not good enough, they can be a bit slow to move the ball forward sometimes. Below I have listed my predictions for the season and the order for the top 6 take a read below.
They managed to maintain a top 4 spot after a great start to the season in which they faded away. They managed to add Salah on the wing who is a very good player but I think a top striker upfront should have been a priority. They don’t have a 20 goal scorer, Coutinho was there top scorer with 14 last season. I think to win the league they need a reliable scorer, if he’s fully fit Sturridge could be that. The reason I think they will struggle this season is because I don’t think they have the squad to manage the Champions League with the league. Playing once a week was one of the reasons they played so well at the start of the last season. But when cup competitions started in the new year they started to fall of a bit. They haven’t done much to fix this and they haven’t fixed their main problem at the back. The defence cost them a lot of points from winning positions, most notably away at Bournemouth. If they get van Dijk who just handed in a transfer request that is a major upgrade. The season will also depend on if Coutinho is sold. Last season was his best season and if Liverpool want to call themselves a big club they can’t sell their best player every few years. They need to keep their best players and add not sell and replace them. I see them scoring a lot of goals with Mane and Salah on the wings, Mane is even better than I thought. Unless they strengthen the squad I don’t see them finishing in the top 4.
If I was a Spurs fan I would be very disappointed with what has happened this summer. They just finished 2nd and above Arsenal, this is the opportunity to solidify their place as a top team and send a message to rivals but they haven’t done that. They made a lot of money selling Walker but there hasn’t been any business. They have a really good young team at the moment but not much of a squad. I think the teams that finished below them have improved a lot. If you don’t spend money in the Premier League you are basically moving backwards with how much the rivals are spending. I’m very surprised they haven’t bought in one big player. The added effect of playing at Wembley will play apart in their season where they finish just behind the team in 4th in my opinion. I wrote about this in previous post.
Based on the signings Arsenal have made I expect the same old Arsenal. Last season they hugely underachieved even by their standards, it seemed like some of the players weren’t playing hard enough. They have signed Lacazette who should be an upgrade on Giroud and Kolasnic who looked decent against Chelsea. They still haven’t addressed the centre back issue which I think is the biggest issue they had last season. I think the Europa League will affect their form so I don’t expect them to challenge for the league but I think they will have enough to get back in the top 4 which would be an average season for them. I also wrote previously that I think this will be Wenger’s last season.
It seems like Conte isn’t happy with the summer Chelsea have had even though they have spent a lot of money. Rudiger, Bakayoko, and Morata is a decent transfer season but I don’t think they were his first choices. There is also the problem of what happens with Diego Costa who isn’t part of the plans and still hasn’t been sold. If Morata doesn’t start well the fans could be calling for Costa to come back. One of the big advantages they had last season was no European football. This was hugely beneficial as they had a small squad which will be tested this season in the Champions League. It’s also a fact that no team has defended the title since Man Utd been 07-09. I predict a difficult season for them where they finish behind the Manchester clubs but I think they might make one more big transfer.
2. Man Utd
How do I feel about United’s summer? 50/50.
None of the signings made would have been my first choice but they are good signings. I’m not the biggest Lukaku fan but I know he will score goals. I’m not the biggest fan of Matic but he is better than what we have right now and I don’t know much about Lindelof. So overall this should be a better team plus it is Mourinho’s second season. Not being in the Europa League will also benefit the team so at the minimum I’m expecting a title fight. If Zlatan re-signs we should have no problem up front but I am still concerned with the team formation. I’m not sure how we will line up which is concerning, if Fellaini keeps playing I’m going to have a heart attack. I’m also still concerned about the defence particularly centre back. I don’t trust Smalling, Jones or Lindelof yet alongside Bailly. If the formation is sorted out and one centre back is added I think we have the best team in the league but I think we are still a couple players short.
1. Man City
After a difficult first season I think Guardiola learnt a lot about playing in the Premier League. The style of defending he usually coaches didn’t work here, they were awful defensively and the keeper was even worse. By signing Walker, Mendy and Danilo he should’ve sorted out the fullback situation which was a problem for him. If you look at his previous teams, he’s always had the best full backs to provide width for his team. Bernardo Silva and a fully fit Gabriel Jesus should make an exciting attack along with Aguero, De Bruyne and Sane. I think he’s overspent on some of the players but I think he has the best team in the league and they should win the league and challenge in Europe. I also think keeping Kompany fit is the major key, alongside one of the other centre backs they should be massively improved. I’m predicting a tight race but I think they have more quality in the starting 11 and a more experienced team.
If you have your own thoughts or list comment below.
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