Disclaimer : I will try so hard to be non-partisan in this preview but do not blame me if it’s wearing red-tinted spectacles. I’m a red devil 😊
What the EPL lacks in quality matches and/or star players, it tends to make up with pure unadulterated drama both on and off the pitch and this season won’t be any different (Mourinho already replying Wenger & Kopp). This season’s EPL seems more about managerial appointments than the players. It boggles the mind that one (or all) of Mourinho, Conte, Pep,
Arsene, Claudio, Pocchetino, Klopp will end the season without the league title.
Without much ado, here comes the teams;
Arsenal perennially seems on the cusp of greatness before unravelling. They have the make of a good side and I think I’m speaking for all gunners in saying they need a striker to challenge Giroud and a commanding centre back especially with Per’s injury.
Bournemouth defied the odds last season and now needs to consolidate or will they suffer the dreaded sophomore slump? The defence should be the place to start after posting the division’s second worst defensive record last season.
Burnley ended the championship on a 23 games unbeaten run that saw them finish as champions. Are they back to stay or will they continue to yo-yo? Sean Dyche will have to do this on the smallest budget in the division and hope the loss of Joey Barton is not being felt.
The only way for Chelsea after last season’s disastrous campaign is up. Signs have been mixed so far and having no European commitment have to be a big plus. Defensive consistency needs to be found and a lot will depend on the forms of Hazard, Costa and Fabregas. Kante looks a useful addition.
Two wins from their final 21 games last season was atrocious form and Pardew will be hoping for a change. The signing of Townsend from Newcastle should help but a striker who can deliver should be a priority.
Which Everton will show up this season is the big question? And speculations over the futures of Lukaku & Stones need to be resolved sooner than later. Ronald Koeman should hopefully be an improvement on the headless direction the Toffees were under Martinez even if recruitment have been underwhelming thus far.
The exit of Steve Bruce should come as a shock to the Tigers faithfuls as he implied lack of transfer motivation from the club’s hierarchy. Attacking reinforcements are needed of they want to avoid a straight drop into the championship.
How will Leicester cope with the midweek champions league matches, heightened expectations and loss of some key players?Ahmed Musa looks a useful buy but can Nampalys Mendy fill Kante’s boots?
A return to the champions league should be the minimum expectation from Klopp & his team. The signings have been underwhelming but there’s still time. Will Liverpool make the top four or continue to show moments of sporadic potential?
Which EPL fan didn’t develop goose bumps on hearing about Pep’s appointment? Gundogan, Nolito, and Sane are exciting additions but a defensive signing should be the next target or the conversion of Fernandinho to a centre half.
Mourinho’s long flirtation with United finally bore dividends and he has wasted no time in bolstering the side with Zlatan, Bailly, Mkhitarian &
Pogba . Now, it’s a question of whether he will make an immediate impact and, will it be done with a flash of excitement returning to Old Trafford after last season’s borefest?
Aitor Karanka have wasted little time in recruiting Valdes, Negredo, Maarten de Roon, Gaston Ramirez. Middlesborough seem in a haste to make up for lost time after a seven year absence.
Can the Saints continue defying the odds? Victor Wanyama, Graziano Pelle, Saido Mane, and boss Ronald Koeman have jumped ship but you’d be reluctant to back against them given their recent history. Or could that be one departure too many? Claude Puel is a nice addition to the premier league.
The acquisition of Joe Allen is a nice addition and will aid Hughes’ regeneration at the Britannia stadium. Can Stoke remain in the top half or bother the European places?
After two managerial misadventures, Moyes returns to bolster his reputation. The loss of Allardyce to England and the lack of signings means Sunderland looks set for another flirtation with the drop.
Safety seems the priority at the Liberty stadium than aiming for a Europa league or midtable position. Francesco Guidolin needs to bolster his attacking options.
How can you have your best season in years and still end the season unsatisfied? Spurs need to put their damp end to last season behind them and gear up for a campaign that involves participation in the champions league. Wanyama & Vincent Janssen are decent additions but Spurs needs to start well this season.
Six home wins last season was very poor and Walter Mazzari can not expect to get through another EPL campaign on the back (or should that be boots) of Odion Ighalo and Troy Deeney.
How will West Ham cope in their new home? Will they hold on to Payet? Can they juggle European matches with domestic ones? Can they continue to thrive against the bigger clubs without undoing it against the lesser lights? If the above questions are answered in the affirmative, the hammers are in for a good season.
Is there any chance we will see Tony Pulis break from type? Unlikely. Only Villa had a worse attack last term; no one had less ball. So, a midtable finish is in the offing for the baggies.
1.) Manchester United 😊
2.) Manchester City
7.) Leicester City