The 2019/20 Premier League season is now underway, and the first handful of games has already provided plenty of excitement, action and controversy. We’ve had VAR overturning goals, Chelsea slipping right down to the bottom end of the table, and teams like Liverpool and Manchester City showing the form and commitment that you would expect following last season’s results.
City will be looking to defend their title and take the Premier League trophy for the third year running. Liverpool will, of course, be the team that everyone expects can stop them. How do teams like Tottenham, Manchester United and Arsenal stack up against the big dogs? Let’s take a look at the clubs and how likely they are to win the Premier League.
Who Will be the Premier League Champion?
City took the Premier League by storm last year, though they only finished a point ahead of Liverpool in the end. No team has ever won the English Premier League three seasons running, but Pep Guardiola could be the manager who is capable of making it happen. He has, after all, led both Barcelona and Bayern Munich to three consecutive league titles in his career.
This season started off well for City, with a convincing win over West Ham in their opening game, before being held off to a 2-2 draw against Tottenham in the second, despite 30 shots on goals to Tottenham’s three.
City is a team with plenty of strength, depth and strategical know-how. With a great manager and excellent squad, they could easily take the top spot again and are currently favorites to do so at the bookies and amongst pundits. They will no doubt miss Vincent Kompany’s influence, but to balance it out Kevin de Bruyne is back from injury. Prediction: first place.
The number one challengers to City’s throne are Liverpool. They finished just a point behind City last season, and seem to have found City’s weaknesses when the two teams meet. It was only a lack of consistency in the New Year that prevented them from winning the league.
This year, you can expect to see increased focus and determination from Jurgen Klopp and the team, though the front three have not had a proper rest for two years now. Salah, Firmino and Mane are essential to Liverpool’s attacking strength, and if one or more of them loses fitness or picks up an injury, the team could struggle to adapt.
Many pundits believe Liverpool have a decent chance of a first-place finish this year, with others predicting they will come second. What is clear is that experts view this season as another race between City and Liverpool. Their form so far this season shows that they are ready to take first place, but the overall prediction is for them to finish second.
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After closing in on City within two points by Christmas, Tottenham eventually finished 27 points behind City last season after a lack of form late on. They have brought in several strong signings such as Giovani lo Celso and Ndombele, but could not secure Dybala, and so still lack the punch to make first place. They could be worth an outside prediction, but a third-place finish is most likely for Tottenham.
Arsenal haven’t won a Premier League title in 16 years, and this year probably won’t be much different. Exciting new players like Pepe and David Luiz have joined the squad, but overall there are still issues in midfield and especially defense.
Chelsea have had a really poor start to the 2019/20 season, picking up just one point in their first two games. They will be galvanised by Frank Lampard, but without Hazard, and with no new signings to speak of, they look to be lacking the firepower to compete at the top, and will most likely be joining Arsenal and United in the battle for fourth place.
Manchester United have not come close to a title in six years and only managed a 6th place finish last season. There’s a lot of pressure on Ole Gunner Solskjaer to bring the team up to scratch, but it almost feels like football fans are just waiting gleefully for him to fail. There are big question marks over whether Sanchez will leave, and though it looks like Pogba will stay, his commitment to the club is also questionable. Essentially, United are still in the rebuild stage and may not make a top 4 finish.
It’s too early to know how the Premier League will develop, which teams will rise to the top and which will fall into a deep slumber, but previous results, analysis and expert opinion has it that Liverpool and Manchester City will be in a close title race, followed by Tottenham in third place, and then Arsenal, United and Chelsea potentially scrapping to stay amongst the best.