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Recognizing Premier League's Best of the Rest

In the fifteen year history of the Premier League, only one club outside of the four horse race has ever won the Premiership title. That was Blackburn Rovers during the 1993-94 season. The chances of a club from outside the top four lifting the trophy in the future are practically nil.

So, to recognize those achievers from “the other 16,” EPL Talk has gone back through the history of the Premier League since its start in the 1992-1993 season and created an award named the Alternative Premier League Trophy (pictured below). Our aim is to recognize their achievements. Sadly, it’s the closest any of them will get to winning the Premier League trophy possibly ever again.

The winners of the Alternativealternative premier league trophy Recognizing Premier League's Best of the Rest Premier League Trophy, which goes to those clubs outside the top four who finished in the highest league position (shown in parenthesis), are:

2006/2007
Tottenham Hotspur (5th)

2005/2006
Tottenham Hotspur (5th)

2004/2005
Everton (4th)

2003/2004
Newcastle United (5th)

2002/2003
Newcastle United (3rd)

2001/2002
Newcastle United (4th)

2000/2001
Leeds United (4th)

1999/2000
Leeds United (3rd)

1998/1999
Leeds United (4th)

1997/1998
Leeds United (5th)

1996/1997
Newcastle United (2nd)

1995/1996
Newcastle United (2nd)

1994/1995
Blackburn Rovers (1st)

1993/1994
Blackburn Rovers (2nd)

1992/1993
Aston Villa (2nd)

In all, Newcastle United has won more Alternative Premier League trophies than any other club. Here are the number of times each club has won it:

1. Newcastle United 5
2. Leeds United 4
3. Blackburn 2
4. Tottenham Hotspur 2
5. Aston Villa 1
6. Everton 1

Times have definitely changed for clubs such as Newcastle and Leeds, but they can take some comfort in finishing the best of the rest.

Really there shouldn’t be a need to create such a silly trophy like this in the first place, but it goes to show how ridiculous it is for a league to flourish where you can guarantee that only one of four out of the 20 clubs can win it. Thanks heavens for the relegation battle and Champions League and UEFA Cup spots. Otherwise it would be a boring league indeed.

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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
View all posts by Christopher Harris →

5 Responses to Recognizing Premier League's Best of the Rest

  1. Simon says:

    Excellent post gaffer, very interesting here to see where the rest fall. You might want to add however that really only 3 clubs have ever lifted the Prem consistently as Liverpool have never done it :)
    I think in the future it will be more possible for the other teams to have a go with the way financial backing is changing. Man City have put in high investment and a world class manager and in 2 years could have a hell of a squad. Portsmouth and VIlla with good investment and a 2-4 year time frame could also have a decent go, more Villa than Pompey as Pompey will never be competitive in years with an African Cup.

  2. Kartik says:

    I’d argue Leeds and Newcastle were much better clubs and bigger clubs in a way than Chelsea and even traditional power Liverpool throughout much of the late 1990s and early 2000s. In reality it has been a Big two since the foundation of the Premier League with a rotating group of other title contenders. Liverpool has finished 2nd just once and even at that point Leeds had a much better team but was focused on trying to win the Champions League which as we know they did not and doom followed for that club.

  3. timmyg says:

    I agree with Kartik, except it seems more of a Manchester United against the team du jour. Five years ago it was Arsenal, past few years it was Chelsea, now its Arsenal again…

    Good post gaffer, and it really is quite ridiculous when you consider everything. Which is exactly why sports in the USA have salary/luxury caps. (Although those would kill the BPL)

  4. mookie says:

    Tottenham and Newcastle at this point better hope they stay at the mid table.

  5. cory says:

    i’m a massive liverpool supporter, and really think rafa if given the resources could do it, but you cant put liverpool in with chelski, manure or the arse until they actually win the league again.

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