We are tantalisingly close to the start of the 2017/18 Premier League season, and thus every man & his dog is throwing names around when it comes to who they think is going to lift the famous title this year. For us, we’d prefer to look at the bigger picture.
From 1st all the way down to 20th we’re going to attempt to predict who we believe will finish where when the final whistle blows in May, based solely off of what we’ve seen over the last few months. Some of these predictions are almost guaranteed to be way off given the unpredictable nature of English football, but that’s the beauty of it.
Today is the day. pic.twitter.com/I1wziA9nWZ
— Mundial Magazine (@MundialMag) August 11, 2017
1st – Manchester United
They may have only brought in a handful of new players, but Matic and Lukaku alone are statements of intent from Jose Mourinho and there’s no getting around that. With a manager who was born to win and an ever improving young squad, the only way is up for United and they’re ready to make a real run for the title.
Jose has had time to settle into life in Manchester, and he’ll be chomping at the bit to overtake his former side, Chelsea. If they can put all the pieces into place, they’ll be the champions elect in eight to nine months time.
2nd – Chelsea
Whilst Chelsea have indeed been busy in the market, the question remains as to whether or not they can bring their momentum forward from last season without caving under the pressure of retaining their crown. Many say yes, but you’ve got to imagine that Conte will have European glory in his sights above all else.
Morata coming in to replace Diego Costa is a huge task and whilst we think they’ll still have a decent year, it’ll be the Red Devils who pinch the title. Hopefully, it’ll all go down on the last day, but we can’t be too greedy.
3rd – Manchester City
Moneybags City continue to go from strength to strength, but Guardiola is still coming to terms with life in England and that much is obvious. United and Chelsea are simply ahead of City in most departments right now, and as we all know one key injury to someone like Aguero could derail their entire campaign.
It’s not like they’re a lost cause or anything, but 3rd wouldn’t be the end of the world considering the strength of the teams around them.
4th – Tottenham
Many fans feel like Tottenham’s inability to bring in players signifies weakness, but what if it’s having the exact reverse effect? Whilst their rivals are busy throwing money around, Spurs are continuing to build a solid foundation with a team that would have chemistry in the upper 90s if we’re talking FIFA analogies.
They’ll struggle towards the back end as they always do and a title challenge is still a year or two away, but consolidating a Champions League spot should be at the forefront of their mind above all else.
5th – Arsenal
Poor old Arsene can’t seem to catch a break at the Emirates, despite lifting spirits through the purchase of Alexandre Lacazette. The Gunners still have arguably one of the strongest sides in the league but the uncertainty surrounding Alexis Sanchez is dragging them down, and that’s not the kind of thing they need so close to the start of the season.
Ultimately they’ll probably miss out on Champions League football yet again, which should be the final straw when it comes to Wenger’s extended tenure as Arsenal boss.
6th – Everton
OFFICIAL: Ronald Koeman has confirmed that Wayne Rooney will start for Everton against Stoke City in the Premier League this weekend. pic.twitter.com/7eAZMaLu3E
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) August 10, 2017
Everton have gone from being the shy kid in the corner to the big spenders of the division, forking out millions to bring in no less than seven game changing players. With home town favourite Wayne Rooney leading the line, this Toffees side is quietly going under the radar as a team to watch.
Granted they’ll likely start poorly as they always do, but Koeman isn’t one to give up so easily and their determination will lead them above their Merseyside rivals in 2017 and beyond.
7th – Liverpool
Jurgen Klopp is probably tearing his hair out as we speak courtesy of the Philippe Coutinho saga, and Liverpool fans seem to be growing pretty tired of the whole ordeal. It’s starting to take its toll on the morale of the Anfield faithful, and considering they’ve got a UCL play-off to prepare for that can’t be a good thing.
Missing out on European football would be a complete disaster for the Reds, so they’d better hope for another Istanbul miracle.
8th – West Ham
The Hammers have had their first season at their new abode and as such, they should be fairly comfortable with playing there now. When you add the likes of Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta and Javier Hernandez into the mix you’ve got an extremely promising team, and with no European football to worry about they could do some big things this year.
9th – Bournemouth
Eddie Howe continues to be one of England’s best managers, with a future call-up to one of the bigger sides being imminent. Still, we’ll focus on his task at hand, with Bournemouth proving how comfortable they are in the EPL through the signings of Jermain Defoe, Nathan Ake and Asmir Begovic. This is a top half team waiting to burst out, and the rest is up to them.
10th – Leicester
Following yet another bizarre campaign last year things have stabilised for the UCL quarter-finalists, and the Foxes have set themselves up brilliantly for yet another solid season. Their signings don’t exactly scream ‘top six contenders’, but a cup run to go alongside a top half finish should suit them just fine.
11th – Southampton
Southampton fans must be some of the most laid back supporters in the country, as their side continues to bounce back from the constant selling of their top names. They’ve still got some pulling power too, with Jan Bednarek and Mario Lemina being two huge signings that will undoubtedly lead them to another comfortable campaign.
12th – Watford
The Hornets have been going under the radar with their business this summer, with Chalobah and Gray in particular sticking out as really smart business deals. Unfortunately there’s always the threat of relegation when you’re a Watford fan, but they’re certainly still the best of a bad bunch when it comes to the battle down the bottom.
? "Udinese's B team."
? "Never heard of him."
? "Watford don't sign home-grown players."
— bet365 (@bet365) August 9, 2017
13th – Crystal Palace
With Frank de Boer at the helm there’s always going to be room for optimism at Selhurst Park, but for whatever reason, the Eagles can never seem to push that extra mile that’ll take them to the next level within this division. Sure they can grind out results, but mediocrity and wanting to finish above Brighton will only take you so far.
14th – Brighton
Perhaps the best tool that Brighton have at their disposal is Chris Hughton and we don’t say that lightly. The former Spurs player knows what it takes to survive in this league, and Albion certainly have an extra sense of confidence about them in comparison to their fellow promoted sides Newcastle United and Huddersfield.
15th – Stoke
Poor Mark Hughes just never seems to be satisfied with life at the Britannia, despite being one of the longest reigning managers in the Premier League. This could be the year that sees the Potters’ luck finally come to an end, as we envisage them being dragged into a relegation scrap that could go on until the dying embers of the season.
16th – West Brom
West Bromwich Albion are one of the most underwhelming sides in PL history, and it’s no coincidence that they’ve got Tony Pulis as their man in charge. The Baggies drift from season to season with no real purpose other than to avoid the drop and whilst that makes sense, the lack of passion is more than evident and they could struggle.
17th – Newcastle
Bringing in a host of big names is all well and good, but everyone knows that the issues behind the scenes at St James Park have already dampened the spirits of the Magpies heading into the weekend. If Benitez stays we’d bet on them sticking around for at least another year, but they’ll almost certainly make hard work of it.
— NG (@NewcastleGoals) August 10, 2017
18th – Huddersfield
The Terriers haven’t really done all too much wrong in the ways of the transfer window and their side is actually looking quite impressive, but the experience factor is something that you just can’t prepare yourself for in the top flight. It’ll be a fight til the very last day, but Huddersfield just can’t compete – at least not yet.
19th – Swansea
The potential relegation of Swansea City rests, in many ways, on the shoulders of Gylfi Sigurdsson. Last year they relied on a large surge combined with the failure of others, but this time round they may not have their main man to drag them out of trouble. There could be a few shock results here and there, but the Welsh should probably start preparing for a life without a PL representative.
20th – Burnley
We’ve questioned whether or not Sean Dyche actually wants to manage in the Championship several times this summer, with the purchase of Jonathan Walters confirming to us that the answer is yes. Burnley were dropping like mad at the end of last season, and that looks set to continue all the way through until May.
If you’re reading this in August full of hope and excitement, then get ready for one hell of a rollercoaster ride. If you’re reading this in May then we can only hope you’re reaping the rewards of a successful season, whether that be due to taking 4th or avoiding the drop.