2019/20 Premier League predictions: Through the eyes of the gods
We had to wait till the crazy transfer season was over and days after dust must have settled after the first weekend of English football to decide where we’re leaning in terms of potential league champions and cup winners, furthermore, we’ll figure which of the premier league sides will perform the best in the two European championships.
Premier League championsMost would find this as the easiest job ever, considering how blistering Manchester City were against Westham and how well they managed to fix their DM back up issues with Rodrigo from Valencia; some would argue that they could have signed a central defender to fill the gap left behind by the departed skipper, Vincent Kompany, and they also allowed Eliaqim Mangala to join Valencia, in all they are still the team to beat by all standards but I beg to differ on where the title will land… I tip Liverpool!
Continuity and stability, that’s the hallmark of Jurgen Klopp’s sides over the years; no real additions apart from the toddler from Fulham and the strange signing of Adrian from Westham as backup goalie, they remain the same unit that pushed City all the way last season and only lost by millimeters, expect them to repeat the same and this time, with lots of luck on their side.
There are questions about the backup options at left-back should Robertson pull up injured, Milner can suffice while Matip, Joe Gomez and Henderson can all put in shifts at right-back if anything happens to the highly effective Trent Alexander Arnold.
Tottenham Hotspur will surely compete, they are thin up front in the absence of Harry Kane but they performed better without him last season and the duo of Lucas Moura and Meung Son will deputize if the captain is unavailable; they are a bit weak in defense, Justin Foyth is injured but the manager will make do with the two veterans from Belgium, outside that, they only have Cristian Eriksen’s contract situation to worry about… Third at best.
Top four picks:Liverpool
Ngolo Kante was the X-Factor by all standards and mentions must be made of young American forward Christian Pulisic but in the end, an injury to either of them can ultimately derail the Blues’ season.
Manchester United will definitely make good shout for the top four but their weaknesses in the middle might just hurt them, yes they have a defense that can win games but an injury or suspension to any of the current preferred back four could wreak havoc, consistency is key and you wonder how much of that would United offer this season… Fifth-place finish at best.
Leicester City will challenge the big wigs this season, if injuries don’t haunt them and key players stay in form, the loss of Harry Maguire would be the only thing they have as an albatross on their way to being the best of the rest; while many tip Wolves to break into the top six, I strongly feel their Europa League adventures will limit their domestic runs and see them crash out of top-six contention as early as Christmas.
Watford started on the wrong note at home to Brighton, early days but doesn’t that tell you where they truly belong? Everton were quite brave in the just concluded window and that might just help them to ruffle some feathers, I expect them to be the best of the rest in the seventh position come May 2020.
Predicted Europa League standings:Manchester United
Cup competitionsLiverpool once again won’t impress domestically on cup fronts, expect them to crash out early from the FA and Carabao cups due to their hunger for the top prize (Premier League title); Manchester City will lose out in the league and then attempt to destroy everything that stands in their way in domestic cup competitions just as they did last season but they won’t win the FA Cup, Manchester United will.
At the time the FA Cup would be heating up, City would need to prioritize for their quest for European glory and that sacrifice would mean they would have to let go of their domestic treble chase, quadruple is possible but not this season; while United wouldn’t be anywhere near the top four permutations, the new manager then (should Ole Gunnar Solksjaer be moved on) would aim at the cup, with nothing to lose in the league or Europe.
Arsenal fully focused on their hopes for Europa League triumph which they missed out last season after losing to Chelsea in the final, Spurs putting the pressure on in the league and Champions League as always, Chelsea dropping to Europa league and aiming to win it again, Liverpool solely focusing on their nineteenth league conquest, it’s United’s to lose in the FA Cup. City will win the Carabao cup; expect them to ease through in their full regalia.
Manchester City want the UEFA champions league, it’s now or never for them and don’t be surprised to see Pep Guardiola walk away from the Etihad should he land the biggest one, my money is on him trying to win the World Cup with Spain in Qatar.
Standing in City’s way to the biggest European trophy will no doubt be Juventus, they have the Cristiano Ronaldo factor, a very strong midfield and a defense to envy, and the only thing City have over Juventus is the managerial tinkering of Pep Guardiola but fans of the Old Lady will argue that their manager, Maurizio Sarri triumphed in Baku.
Another team to watch out for is Barcelona, Lionel Messi is still in the business of roaring and he can always make the difference, they have a few new bodies to help their cause and won’t be pushed over although no one trusts Ernesto Valverde on big days, don’t worry about Real Madrid, PSG and Liverpool, they will have bigger troubles elsewhere but Bayern Munich is busy buying everyone and that might just be of help, but Kovac in charge? Never mind.
For Europa, Unai Emery will go for this again and this time with better bodies, Arsenal certainly have a better squad than they did last season, assured defense with Kieran Tierney, David Luiz and the returning Rob Holding with pacy wide man, Nicolas Pepe on the wings and Dani Ceballos in the middle, they do have teams dropping from the Champions League to contend with but expect Arsenal to get it just right this season.
Champions League winner prediction:Manchester City
Europa League Winner prediction:Arsenal
Written by @komptrolla