PLC

As regular readers will be well aware, this publication tends to concern itself with the goings-on at the big six in the Premier League rather than get involved with the tedium that is the French League, the monotony that, (usually), is the Spanish League, the predictability, (except for this season), which is the Bundesliga and the general apathy which everybody outside of Italy has for the Italian league.

This article is no exception to that general rule of thumb and, despite the excitement generated in both Spain and Germany by potential new challengers to the old regimes, we make no apology for sticking with the tried and tested good old “English” Premier League.

But who is going to win it? Well, over at Amazing Bet they have some very decent odds for those who think they know the answer to that question. As for ourselves, we consider it to be a two-horse race which will become a one-horse race not too long after Christmas.

The favourites, Manchester City, have just suffered their first defeat of the season in losing 2-0 at Stamford Bridge. Despite outplaying Chelsea for the entire first half and most of the second, they were undone because the Londoners took their two chances while the Mancunians missed their many.

This had many “experts” proclaiming that Chelsea were “back” even though, in fact, they were lucky to win this game and the scoreline could have been very different had City scored.

So City will saunter to the title this season. Nothing in that defeat to Chelsea has given any reason for a change of mind and they have Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Agüero to come back into the team.

Liverpool are still “getting away with it” and will be found out once they play the better teams and/or suffer a couple of injuries. The evidence has all been there when they have played in Europe this season, where they still need to win their final game to qualify from what should have been a relatively easy group.

Chelsea, as mentioned earlier, are blowing hot and cold with the emphasis more on the cold. Their failure to win games they should be winning will see them finish in third position which is still an improvement on last season.

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Lucas Torreira has been a big factor in Arsenal’s relative successes this season

Arsenal are improving under new manager Unai Emery but he needs to sort out that defence which is still conceding too many goals. What must George Graham, (“1-0 to the Arsenal“), be thinking? Even Tony Adams was moved to comment on it after the 2-2 draw at Old Trafford where the defence was at fault for both United goals.

The best the Gunners can hope for this season is fifth meaning they will again be able to compete in their manager’s favourite competition, the Europa League, next season. Unless he wins it this season, of course.

Tottenham Hotspur have again been their usual selves. Will they be playing at the new White Hart Lane next year or will they still be at Wembley? Even the players don’t seem to know and are getting pretty fed up with it all, just ask Danny Rose.

It doesn’t really matter as Spurs are too inconsistent to threaten the very top of the Premier League and they, like Liverpool, are finding it very difficult in Europe against the better teams although they did have the most difficult group from which to try and qualify.

The inconsistencies of others should ensure a fourth placed finished for Mauricio Pochettino and his men but they could certainly help themselves by becoming more consistent.

Manchester United are probably the biggest enigma of the big six. They are currently proving that it doesn’t really matter if you have great players and a great manager, you can still produce some rubbish on the pitch.

José Mourinho will need to use all of his experience, (which, as manager of a big club in his third year, is extremely limited), to try and ensure Champion’s League qualification for next season. The task may be beyond him and, as things are, United will finish sixth and remain a considerable distance behind the winners, just like last season.

So that’s the state of play after 16 games. It looks good for one half of Manchester and one half of Liverpool and the rest will fight for the scraps meaning an interesting second half to the season in the race for the top four places.

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Comments
  1. Jason Gil says:

    There’s no sense in this. No single sense

    Like

    • pauleee says:

      Counterpoint: Seems pretty sensible to me. If I were being completely honest, this is how I see the league finishing, with the possible exception of Tottenham, who I can see in any of the 3-5 spots.

      If Chelsea could get their collective head out of their ass when playing the teams in the bottom half, maybe we could stay in the conversation, at least until the last couple months of the season. If only. Short of a major switch in tactics (like under Conte, but it appears impossible under Sarri) and a long winning streak, we’ll just stay in the rear-view mirror (objects may appear closer than they really are). Still, I wonder how we’d being doing if Courtois were still in goal. I like the new guy, goes by the name Shorty. He’s quick, decent hands but every time I see him I think it must be Take-your-kid-to-work Day. All things being equal Thibault stops the Sturridge goal and probably the first one from Tottenham. If only.

      Like

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