Prediction is a mug’s game. But most fans enjoy doing it and after all it is the right time to publish a season-long prediction. On the off-chance I have called a handful of places right, at the end of the season I reserve the right to fool gullible people that I am a predictive genius. With hundreds of analysts and crackpots alike doing this, there’s a good chance that SOMEONE will get it right. And I could be that someone…
Disclaimer, this ain’t wrestling and I’m no Dolphins1925.
To come up with the above, I used the information published in a previous piece and set about adjusting it with my own opinions on which teams have bought and sold well this year, alongside the managerial changes and potential for mean regression. It would surprise me if Man Utd don’t sneak in a marquee signing of some sort – particularly if Rooney leaves – but in any case I haven’t incorporated that prospect into these predictions.
The working data I started with is here:
And now some reckless not thought through opinions:
You can see that I like Chelsea’s prospects this year. Put a quacking duck in charge of that team and they’ll finish in the top 3 again, let alone THAT inspirational irritable Portuguese man brought to you in association with Samsung.
I’m a bit pessimistic about post-Pulis Stoke. I’m always pessimistic about Stoke but I fear they’ll lose their Stoke-ness this year and drop to the Championship.
I think Everton will weaken without Moyes, and yet Man Utd will also weaken slightly in their adjustment to life without SAF.
Man City will improve a bit, but not quite enough to overhaul Utd and Chelsea. For the record I would have assumed that City under Mancini would have improved on last season’s result in any case.
Arsenal will probably be exactly like Arsenal again this year and take 4th from Liverpool and Spurs. If they manage to prise Suarez off Liverpool I’d knock 4 points off Liverpool and add 7 to Arsenal’s total. Maths!
Liverpool will continue their improvement since January last year, beating Spurs to 5th whilst Spurs won’t be quite as fortunate with late winners from Bale this season but otherwise have a stronger-looking team to make up for it.
Fulham will push Everton for 7th, closely followed by Newcastle, Swansea and Southampton in no particular order.
Norwich, West Ham and West Brom will be safe but stuttering. Cardiff have strengthened just about enough to entertain the thought of survival and perhaps finish ahead of Stoke or Sunderland or Aston Villa. But Hull and Palace are going down!