Thursday, August 11, 2011

Premier League Season Preview

Premier League Season Preview

The Wait is over! If I wasn't a baseball fan, summer would possibly be the worst time of
the year for me. Without sports I just cannot survive and its fantastic to get some diversity this
time of year with soccer, hockey, football and basketb... (nevermind) on the horizon. Alright
enough of all these introductory cliche paragraphs. Let's get right down to it.

As a Liverpool FC fan, I was gutted to see Manchester United win the Premier League
last season. They claimed hold of being Premier League's best by winning their 19th title,
knocking Liverpool of the perch, who held the record, having 18 titles, a record they preserved
for almost 45 years. However, after failing to win the Premier league since 1990, and
Manchester United winning it 12 times since then, it was a heartbreaking thing to witness. And
as much as it hurts to say this, they look the firm favorites to win it again this year. The
Acquisitions of Ashley Young, Phil Jones and David De Gea had definitely increased the teams
depth, and even after their long serving midfield maestro Paul Scholes and their outstanding
goalkeeper Edwin Van Der Sar both retired last year, it doesn't look like they are going to be
threatened by any other Premier League team, sadly...

For Chelsea, who finished 2nd last year, bringing the youngest manager to manage a
premier league team (aged 33) to take charge of a team that is highly ambitious is a huge risk.
Andres Villas Boas (the new manager) is a fantastic tactician, and worked wonders with the
Portuguese Club Porto last season, after the team lost their best 2 players, by delivering the
Portuguese League trophy and winning the UEFA Europa league last season. His main intention
would be to get the best out of Fernando Torres, for who Chelsea splashed £ 50 million to
acquire him from Liverpool. If the team stays fit for the who season and stays consistent, which
clearly wasn't the case last season, I can see them challenge for the title. In ideal circumstances, I
believe they'll finish 3rd this season.

For Manchester City, after splashing out a total of approximately £ 420 million since the
rich Arabian owners took over the club, the team has transformed from a club living under the
shadows of Manchester United to a premier league contender. I have high hopes for them,
especially under their manager Roberto Mancini. The arrival of Sergio Aguero is a fantastic
signing for not only city but for the premier league as well. They have way too much depth in
every area of their team and I can see them strongly contending for the title. I have a feeling
they'll miss winning it by the smallest of margins against United on the final day, putting them in
2nd place.

Liverpool will finish 4th for me. Ill explain why in another post.

I can see Arsenal finish 5th after they are set to lose their 2 most priced assets in Fabregas
and Nasri. Van persie is a fragile as a wine glass and I just cannot see him stay fit for a whole
season. Wenger (Arsenal's manager) has to get his head straight and spend some serious money
instead of relying on his youth policy which has fetched him nowhere for the last 6 years.

Arsenal is like my 2nd favorite team since that was the 1st team I watched play as I was growing
up in my younger years. If Wenger doesn't deliver a strong title challenge or win a cup, it's tough
times ahead. The fans are already enraged since they pay the most in the premier league to see
the team play (A cup of tea costing £ 2.50 and ticket prices soaring to £ 50 minimum0 and if the
team doesn't play for a bang for the buck, it's not going to go well in the Gooners territory next

As for relegation, it's going to be a dogfight to survive in the Premier League next year.
For people who are new to this concept, in the Premier League(and most of the European
League) the teams that finish in the last 3 spots in a particular season are relegated to the lower
league (known as the Championship). This leads them to lose their best players, tons of TV
revenue money and sponsorships. The top 3 teams from the championship are promoted to the
Premier League to play the following year. I can see a 6 team battle to survive against
Blackburn, QPR, Swansea, Norwich, Wolves and Wigan.

1) Manchester United (Ow the pain! Hurts like **** to write this)
2) Chelsea (Villas Boas is a Boss. People underestimate him too much)
3) Manchester City
4) Liverpool
5) Arsenal
6) Spurs
7) Bolton
8) Everton
9) Sunderland
10) Stoke
11) Fulham
12-16) Blah
17) Wolves (Survive again)
18) Blackburn
19) Wigan (I hope they do go down, its so boring to see liverpool play there with 2000 fans)
20) Swansea

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