Who Is The Favourite Now? City Looking Good, United Revitalised, Arsenal, Tottenham And Liverpool All Still Around, Chelsea Have Work To Do

Posted: September 27, 2016 in Arsenal, Chelsea, European Football, Everton, Football, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League, Tottenham Hotspur
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Not to mention Everton, the dark horses, so I won’t. Mention them, that is.

After only six games of the new season the great British press, the fourth estate, the paragons of virtue, trust and truthfulness, have decided who is going to win the title, who is going to get relegated and which managers are going to be sacked before and after Christmas.

Even at this early stage Manchester City are favourites with Fleet Street to win the Premier League title. The last time City started a season in similar style to this one was in 2011/12 when they were unbeaten for the first fourteen games, (there were a couple of draws in there so it wasn’t a perfect record). They did, however, go on to win the league that season. Fleet Street may have it right again.

Manchester United seem to have recovered from their dismal run of three lost games and looked back to something like their best against Leicester City. Supporters will need to see a lot more performances like that one to be convinced that United have a chance of winning the title.

Both Liverpool and Tottenham are showing really impressive form at the moment and it is difficult to separate the two as the occasional strange result still keeps creeping into their season. Liverpool’s was when they lost to Burnley and Tottenham’s, coincidentally, was when they lost to Liverpool. They will both go close to the top four and, if they can find some consistency, may even both finish in the top four.

Arsène Wenger places a reservation marker on a place at the top four table every year and has done so for the last twenty years. Another club playing very well at present. Consistency will be more important than ever this season as it was inconsistency that prevented them from overhauling Leicester last season when they let slip their best chance to win a title in years. If he isn’t careful this time, Wenger may find that the top four table is already fully booked by the time he arrives.

Antonio Conte, as with all recent Chelsea managers, is about to find out how far the patience of Roman Abramovich will stretch. If he is still in a job by Christmas then I expect him to at least see out the season. The question is; will he be given until Christmas?

Another bad result or two and Chelsea may very well be looking for another manager. Abramovich is very much a subscriber to the “organ grinder is always at fault, never the monkey” school of thought. If, however, Conte has not been able to bring in the players of his choice, for whatever reason, this becomes a moot point, just as Abramovich becomes the organ grinder.

Hard times may be coming to the Bridge but, equally, Conte may turn things around quite quickly, he isn’t a bad manager when all said and done.

Claudio Ranieri is assured his place in the history of both the Premier League and Leicester City Football Club. He also realises that better teams than his have failed to defend a league title so it is beyond expectation that Leicester will be able to achieve it. Only Manchester United and Chelsea have managed it in the past 24 years!

With the sale of N’Golo Kanté to Chelsea and the strengthening operations carried out by nearly all of the big clubs, Leicester’s chances of retaining the title are very slim. They have already lost three games this season and the Champions rarely lose more than five or six. It will be an uphill struggle but, more realistically, Ranieri can expect his team to finish in the top ten and maybe sneak into the top six and a European place if things go their way.

So the press have City winning it, followed by United, Chelsea and Arsenal with Liverpool and Spurs making up the top six. Not very imaginative and not a bet on which to make your fortune.

The annoying thing about it all is that they are probably just about right with their predictions!

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