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Who Are The Early Title Favourites?

premiership-trophyThe summer is far from over and we haven’t even got close to seeing the end to the transfers for the Premiership, but who are the early favourites for the league title next season?

Manchester United have certainly lost one of their major assets in the form of Cristiano Ronaldo which would appear to make them a weaker proposition for next season, however they have signed Valencia who may turn out to be a good player for the club and add a good shape to the team and most importantly they have signed Michael Owen. Owen is not a man I would have expected to see in a Manchester United shirt but he looks like he could do a job for them. He is one of the most natural goalscorers in the league and the benefit of being at a club like Man Utd is that you don’t need to play every week so hopefully he can stay fit. Man Utd still look weak in the centre of the park especially with the news that Hargreaves has suffered another setback, but I still see the potential for another signing if the right player becomes available.

Liverpool were a much improved team last season and were possibly the most dangerous team on their day. Liverpool have signed Glen Johnson who is a good player though maybe not quite worth the money they paid. It would appear that Liverpool at present don’t have a huge amount of money to play with so we have potentially seen the last major signing from them however with Alonso tipped to leave that could free up some cash, however the major downside is that they would be losing arguably there best player. If Alonso goes it is big boots to fill and if they are not filled well then Liverpool won’t be able to take that final step and be crowned champions again.

Arsenal have been linked with a huge number of players this summer but so far have only signed a defender, which in fairness is a position they need to strengthen. Adebayor and it looks like Toure are both leaving which gives Wenger a good pool to spend from. Arsenal have the potential to challenge for the title but in my opinion only if they recruit a couple of players. Adebayor and Toure are little loss as far as I am concerned and the team can play better without them but the team are still screaming out for a defensive midfielder, although Song progressed well last season but a player with more experience could be useful, and another central defender. A striker is not an essential purchase for Arsenal as a number of players are flexible and Eduardo is back but a top class striker would add some bite to the attack.

Manchester City have spent a lot of money this summer and should in theory be up there contesting the title, however they need to improve their central defence in my opinion if they are to stand any chance of breaking into the top four. Tevez, Santa Cruz and Adebayor on paper is a very exciting prospect not to mention the other strikers at the club so if the team can gel together quickly then they are in with an excellent shout of being there or there abouts.

Chelsea under the control of Carlo Ancelotti doesn’t fill me with excitement, I have never been a fan of the manager, however from all account the team seem to be playing nice football in pre-season and they are quietly going about their business. The key to Chelsea is if they can get the likes of Drogba playing to his full potential again and if they can then you Chelsea will be right up there come the end of the season. I still feel Chelsea has a signing or two to come and I think are my early favourites for the title as they haven’t lost or indeed look like potentially losing any of their top players and I think they will strengthen further before the close of the window.

There are sure to be a lot of twists and turns both before and during the season but one thing we know for certain is that we will be in for another hard fought Premiership season with a very good possibility there could be at least 5 if not 7 or 8 teams all competing for the top 4 positions in the league.

Written by Danny Watson, a sports journalist who writes about football news and football shirts.

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  1. DaveMo

    July 30, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    Nice article. Fair and objective, I’d say.

    I agree Liverpool have the best first XI, but the league isn’t won in your matches against the other sides in the top four, as was shown this year.

    United have some players that will step up and replace the goals lost with the departure of CR and CT, and their defense should be as good or better than last season. It is central midfield that they should have strengthened this summer.

    Chelsea looks good in the games I’ve seen, but if their age starts to show they will look a lot like the team Ancelotti just left behind. Not good.

    Arsenal seems destined to again show steaks of brilliance and patches of “why didn’t we spend last summer?” lack of depth.

    City will be interesting to watch. They will add a lot to the interesting story lines this season, but they won’t make the top five.

  2. Marcus Tudgay

    July 30, 2009 at 12:29 pm

    Liverpool lose Alonso and Mascherano might follow- City to replace them in the Top 4?

  3. Ian

    July 30, 2009 at 5:40 am

    One player doesn’t make or break a team’s chances of the title. That goes for Ronaldo and Alonso, and especially for Adebayor. This year may see things getting shaken up a bit. City will struggle to make top 4 I think, but they must be top 6 to justify this supposed ‘ambition’ that is convincing all these players to join them.

    I predict a tighter three way race this season – Man U, Chelsea and Liverpool. Too hard to call at this point. Man Utd’s defence was exposed as weak against some of the big teams last year, but they have a terrific depth in their squad. Liverpool need to get over the mid season bore draws they always have. They started well and ended well, but the title was lost when they went through that spell of nil nils at home.

    You never know with Chelsea. Anchelloti may be Scolari 2.0 – I can forsee him having big problems on one hand, but on the other, Chelsea have held on to all their key players, and there’s no reason why they can’t win it this year.

    Outsiders? Not City, not Everton – I predict they struggle this year. Maybe Villa, but they needed better signing that Downing (way over valued) and they haven’t replaced Barry or added real depth to the team. Maybe Spurs will finally live up to the pre-season hype they generate. Though I doubt it.

    The relegation battle will be the most interesting aspect I think. That and the strength of teams in Division 1 (or Dr Pepper Championship or whatever daft name it is).

    • Tyson

      July 30, 2009 at 6:10 am

      Thats a bit of a blanket statement don’t you think.

      The reason Ronaldos departure doesnt matter is because United has enough depth to change their entire formation with the absence of Ronaldo.

      Arsenal and Liverpool on the other hand don’t have a squad that big and are affected massively by injuries. A lot of people argue Gerrard and Torres injuries threw away the last season.

      Alonso is every part as important as either of those seeing home gone for the entire season is nothing short of a disaster.

      On the other hand Arsene Wenger has announced hes not spending any more money which is surprising.

      With the two above facts emerging this question is going to be answered a lot differently than it was yesterday.

  4. Tyson

    July 30, 2009 at 5:04 am

    Alonso has handed in a transfer request. There goes Liverpools chances.

    For Liverpools sake I hope Mascherano doesn’t end up going the same way his situation is practically the same as Alonsos with him wanting to leave to La Liga as well.

    Either way Liverpool is out of it as far as I’m concerned a team like Liverpool can’t afford to lose a player like Alonso without drastic consequences.

  5. Cam

    July 30, 2009 at 4:54 am

    United have a lot of depth in the defending department which is why I think they will take it out! It’ll be another close one thats for sure!
    My only problem with them at the moment is the midfield…No Ronny could prove a problem although he did play up front a fair bit! My ladder;

    ARSENAL (if they buy a couple of GOOD players before the season starts they will come 4th)

    I don’t think I have been this excited for the Premier League to start in years….so much going on Ijust want it to start already….

  6. Sushant

    July 30, 2009 at 1:25 am

    I think ManU will win the league. even though they’ve no ronaldo they’ve got promising players in Michael Owen and Antonio Valencia

  7. Thomas

    July 30, 2009 at 12:30 am

    Chelsea & Liverpool
    Man U

    That order.

    Chelsea looks rejuvenated since the arrival of Hiddink. Ancelotti has them playing good football. They’ll have more depth with the return of Joe Cole..who could replace Malouda if he hits another rough patch. Obi Mikel will have a break out year..MF diamond of Obi/Essien/Malouda/Lamps is better than any EPL midfield. Drogba is as good as any striker, save maybe Torres, when he’s on.

    Liverpool are returning essentially the same team as last year, and they barely lost out. Healthy Gerrard, Torres, and keeping Alonso will make the difference. Johnson gives them a viable threat down the right to combine with Kuyt’s work rate.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Man U won it, but I feel a 4th in a row is not in the cards. Remember they started poorly without Ronaldo last year too.

    Arsenal could push as high as 2, but I don’t think they will. They will fight for 4th. Pressure is going to be intense with Spurs/Everton/Villa ( who I think will fall off the most)/and City

    • Lyle

      July 30, 2009 at 11:42 pm

      Good idea, I think… however, Fulham will remain a strong team:

      Chelsea & Liverpool
      Man U

  8. Lyle

    July 29, 2009 at 7:05 pm

    I’d like for Liverpool to win it for the American owners’ sakes, but I’m thinking Chelsea will do it this year.

  9. The Binocular

    July 29, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    I don’t City are in the hunt there are too many B rate players in their team.

    With Arsenal (as always) there is a great first team, not much past that

    United have lost Ronaldo

    Chelsea are getting old

    I reckon Liverpool are favourites…find out why?

  10. Tyson

    July 29, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    Manchester United will win it.. quite easily really.

    Last year the defense won the Premier League for Manchester United. That was a weakened United defense without one of their star players Wes Brown. Now that hes back your talking about a much more effective defense.

    Liverpol won’t have a chance this year last year United got off to the worse start they have in a decade and Liverpool still couldn’t win it. I mean if you can’t beat a team when its having one of its worse years you don’t have much of a chance if they are doing good.

    Arsenal have quite a bit to spend and with Arsene Wenger at the helm they wont be wasting a penny so its a situation to keep an eye on.

    On the other hand Chelsea and United are the most intriguing set ups.

    Chelsea have been playing a lot of one touch football during the pre season friendlies and that may be an issue for United.

    I think:

    Manchester United

    I also think both Tottenham and Aston Villa will beat out Manchester City who will have trouble getting into the top 8.

  11. Wade Elliott

    July 29, 2009 at 3:12 pm

    Liverpool winning the league? You’re having a laugh!

  12. Chris from Texas

    July 29, 2009 at 11:53 am

    This is Liverpool’s year if Torres and Gerrard stay fit. Alonso won’t be going anywhere and they had the best starting eleven last year and proved it by the 4-1 at Old Trafford.

    I think Chelsea will take second and Manchester United will take third. The big shock will be Manchester City clinching the final Champions League spot and Arsenal dropping to sixth. Believe it or not, Tottenham will take fifth place by a slim margin and be responsible for a riot in North London.

  13. TipsSupremo

    July 29, 2009 at 11:26 am

    Man Utd should win it again. However, I would love to see Man City winning it. It will bring “life” back to EPL.

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