2018-2019 Premier League Predictions

2018-2019 Premier League Predictions

And we’re off. Apologies for the 1-week tardiness, but my views have not changed after Week 1.
And I did swim the Thames Marathon 14K and am still a bit knackered and have been otherwise focused.

2018: plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

1. Manchester City win the PL title to become the latest since their great. cross-town rivals Manchester United accomplished it in three successive years 2006/7; 2007/8 and 2008/9.
2. The Top Six remain the same albeit in a different order. I feel confident in ManC to win then Liverpool pipping ManU. Even with the 3-month loss of De Bruyne. BUT, I have doubts about the order of #3s through #6.
3. Tottenham added no players over the summer are a very good team, yet have little depth and could lose a few other players before the European transfer markets close. They recognize they need to be paid more. Third or fourth.
4. Manchester United. Ahh, so much to say. Will Jose implode as he has historically in his third year this century, or ohh I guess forever. For US Presidents, Year 3 is generally good for the stock market, well for Jose it’s been OUT… Yet I do NOT expect this to happen this year. While Jose is seemingly so, so tormented and has a poor relationship with Paul Pogba and his boss, he will march on if only to break the Year 3 curse. But he will neither win the PL nor the FA Cup nor the CL. Sorry Jose. Most likely 3rd.
One interesting footnote about Jose’s dissatisfaction about spending which he purports ManU has not done enough this past window. Looking at Net Spend since 2016 as of Aug 1: ManU +£302Mill; ManCity +£388; and Liverpool +£114. Methinks someone doth protests too much.
5. Chelsea have a very good new manager and will need and want players to fit into his system. He also risks losing some. Ironically a BBC analysis showed if referees were 100% correct last year, Chelsea would have gained/lost no points whereas Arsenal who finished behind them in 6th would have gained +8 pipping Chelsea. Yes, the world is mostly fair as are referees, but mistakes are made —perhaps too often. The other beneficiary of faulty calls — surprise — was ManU to the detriment of Liverpool. Not this year.
6. Arsenal have a new manager who like Chelsea will want/need new players to fit into his system. Arsenal will have a year of ups and downs as the system is implemented. Like Sarri, Emery is a very good manager and has achieved success in Sevilla and PSG. How will it go with Arsenal? I am hopeful. While we knew the transition from Arsene Wenger after 22 years would be a challenge it does appear that the groundwork has been laid as well as perhaps possible.
Yet I expect 5th or 6th for Arsenal, out of the Champions League places. The PL is so competitive.
7. Newly promoted teams all stayed up last year, but somehow I do not expect the same result this year. The world has great expectations for Wolves with some pundits picking them for 8th and others expecting a top ten. We’ll see.
8. What else player-; manager; and team-wise? Decent chance Pogba leaves but less than 50:50. Sanchez might truly, finally regret his move from Arsenal to ManU. Morata is a bust and will leave within the year. Oh Diego! Newcastle’s Benitez finally has enough with Ashley and leaves as he’s wasting his time for what?
9. Surprises: Richarlison (better); Hart (better); Cech (moves to #2); Tottenham move into their new castle by the end of the year (worse).

More later.