Premier League Predictions: The Football Index team predict the Top Four, who is getting relegated, their one to watch and more

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The wait is over. Premier League football is back tonight as last seasons runners-up, Liverpool host promoted Norwich City.

At Football Index HQ we are expecting another exciting title race, relegation battle and plenty of drama in between.

Will this be the season Liverpool win their first Premier League title? How will the promoted sides perform? Which players will catch the eye of the Traders?

We asked the Football Index team who will finish in the top four, who will get relegated, who is one to watch, who will be a rising star, who was the signing of the summer, who will be the biggest flop and who will be the first manager to be sacked?

Here is what they said…

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The Top Four:

1st – Liverpool – Mike wouldn’t forgive me otherwise.

2nd – Manchester City – Think Champions League glory is their target this season.

3rd – Manchester Utd – Harry Maguire should come in and steady the ship.

4th – Tottenham – Recruited wisely this summer.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Brighton – New Manager, will struggle to compete in my opinion.

19th – Norwich – Will be strong at home but can see them struggling away and a traditional yo-yo club.

20th – Sheffiel Utd – Weakest of the 3 that were promoted.

One to watch:

Paul Pogba – Has to be the current King of the Index 😉 Pogba to reach new heights this season!

A rising star to watch:

Callum Hudson-Odoi – Hopefully, he comes back from injury sooner rather than later. It’s been great seeing him shoot up on the Index this past year.

The signing of the summer:

Tanguy NDombele – From what I’ve heard from FI HQ, everyone is expecting him to have a major impact for Spurs.

Flop of the season:

Nicolas Pepe – The Arsenal fans are trying to take over the office!

The first manager sacked:

Marco Silva (Everton) – He needs to produce for Everton. Big season up ahead for the Toffees.

 

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The Top Four:

1st – Liverpool – It’s our time. There’s no stopping us this season.

2nd – Manchester City – Well they’re not going to finish top are they?

3rd – Tottenham – Best of the rest and strengthened this transfer window.

4th – Chelsea – Can’t have Arsenal or Man Utd in there.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Burnley – I think their stay in the Premier League might come to an end. They’ve enjoyed a good ride.

19th – Brighton – Unproven manager at this level. Think he’s going to struggle in the big leagues.

20th – Sheffield United – Another one that’s going to struggle. Not nearly enough strength in depth.

One to watch:

Rhian Brewster – He’s next in line at Anfield. Will surely get some more minutes under Klopp this season.

A rising star to watch:

Harry Wilson – One of ours out on loan, he was quality for Derby last season so hopefully he’ll keep it going.

The signing of the summer:

Youri Tielemans – Saw what he could do last season, will surely be a stepping stone until he joins one of the big boys.

Flop of the season:

Harry Maguire – Outrageous price for him. Won’t solve their problems and I think I’m going to enjoy it!

The first manager sacked:

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Manchester United) – Honeymoon period is over at Old Trafford. Don’t think he will cut the mustard with his current squad.

 

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The Top Four:

1st – Tottenham – Tanguy NDombele is going to take us to another level. COYS.

2nd – Manchester City – What more can you say about them? The team to beat and we’ll do it!

3rd – Liverpool – Think they might have a hangover from last season and will impact them hugely.

4th – Everton – I can’t bear the thought of Chelsea, Arenal or Man Utd getting it.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Newcastle – Steve Bruce isn’t an inspiring hire in my opinion.

19th – Brighton – Haven’t strengthened enough to keep them up.

20th – Sheffield United – Did very well to get promoted but don’t think they have enough to stay up.

One to watch:

Kyle Walker-Peters – Got an opportunity this season with Trippier leaving for Atletico and Serge Aurier not being in favour.

Rising star to watch:

Ryan Sessegnon – Another quality signing for us, I think he’ll hit the ground running.

Signing of the summer:

Tanguy NDombele – As mentioned above, I think he will elevate us to the next level. He was brilliant for Lyon last season and we beat of a number of big clubs to secure his signature.

Flop of the season:

Christian Pulisic – Made the mistake of joining Chelsea instead of us!

The first manager sacked:

Graham Potter (Brighton) – Think his inexperience with the brutal nature of the Premier League will see him through the door pretty early.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – They are just another level. Last season they did it without Kevin de Bruyne for most of it. He’s back. Enough said.

2nd – Liverpool – They’ve got to hope for plenty of slip-ups from City and I just can’t see it. Can they keep up the same level of performance as last year.? It’s a tough ask.

3rd – Tottenham – Recruited very wisely. Not quite there in terms of a title challenge but definitely head and shoulders above Arsenal, Chelsea & Man Utd.

4th – Arsenal – It’s between them, Chelsea & Man Utd for me and I think they’ve got the edge. I don’t have much hope for either manager of the other two. Cabellos to lead them on their way. He’s a midfield magician.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Newcastle – They’ve had a shocker losing Benitez and hiring Steve Bruce. Benitez worked wonders from them and if Bruce has a bad start the pressure will only mount. A season-long battle against relegation in my eyes.

19th – Sheffield United – Based on their recruitment so far nothing jumps out to me. Will be solid at home and give anyone a game but can see them struggling on their travels and overall lose the battle to stay up.

20th – Brighton – Think the board made a mistake sacking Chris Hughton and they will pay for it.

One to watch:

John McGinn – Reckon Jack Grealish will get all the attention at Villa but John McGinn is integral to the way they play. Sir Alex is a known fan and with him playing on the Premier League stage, you’ll see why. Loves to score worldies as well.

A rising star to watch:

Reece James (when he’s back from injury) – Fantastic player, Chelsea have a gem on their hands here.

The signing of the summer:

Dani Ceballos – Wait until you see him play. He’ll be running the games for Arsenal. Baller.

Flop of the season:

Daniel James – Big price tag for the young Welshman and that brings plenty of pressure. Only had his first (almost) full season last year and he’s already 21. Would make sense for a 17/18-year-old…. Or am I just a bitter Leeds fan?

The first manager sacked:

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (Manchester United) – He’s currently at the wheel but for how much longer? Struggled towards the end of last season and when they don’t keep pace with City & Liverpool pressure will mount. The Poch rumours will start again.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – They are simply too strong. Watching them against most of the Premier League is like watching Arnold Schwarzenegger fight a small child – a no-contest.

2nd – Liverpool – How the hell is a team this good not the best team in the league? I mean, we know why – Man City – but still. Sod it – they’ll win the Champions League again. They’re too good not to win anything.

3rd – Tottenham – Spurs are probably the best of the rest. They actually signed a few players. Harry Kane will score shed-loads of goals as usual. And they’ll end up third again. Naturally.

4th – Arsenal – Arsenal have signed well and there’s a sense of hope amongst the fans. “Maybe we’ll get top three!“, “Maybe even top two!“. Nope. The natural order has been restored and you’ll be 4th again. And you’ll like it.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Burnley – Don’t get me wrong – I love Sean Dyche. But Burnley were rubbish last season, and they’ll be rubbish again. They’re going down.

19th – Brighton – Chris Hughton did NOTHING wrong. And Brighton will pay the price for not believing in him. The ultimate price. Relegation, shame and regret.

20th – Sheffield United – The only promoted team I think will go straight back down – Sheffield United are a Championship club. Get back where you belong!

One to watch:

Harvey Barnes – There’s a lot of talk about young Leicester players like Chilwell, Demarai Gray, James Maddison et al. But, seriously, Harvey Barnes is the real deal. He’s under the radar at the minute, but he’ll surface, guns blazing in 19/20 like the proverbial submarine he is. What I mean is – he’ll score a load of goals.

A rising star to watch:

Hamza Choudhury – Yep, another 21-year-old Leicester player. Stick to what you know. Great defensively, can move with the ball and slot a pass as well – Hamza is the next big thing in terms of defensive midfielders. He’s also got better hair than your rising star.

The signing of the summer:

Moise Kean – Honestly, I don’t know how Everton pulled this off. Kean is 19, can score under immense pressure, is a future Italy international – why on earth did Juve sell him? Why wasn’t he snapped up by a top-six club? Madness. Either way – it’s a great signing for Everton and he’ll do well there.

Flop of the season:

Phil Jagielka – An average career at Everton culminating in a weak run at Sheffield United. Probably for the best as it’ll put big Phil in the championship. (Note: I don’t hate Sheffield United, I just think they’ll struggle. Sorry, Blades fans.)

The first manager sacked:

Frank Lampard (Chelsea) – Abramovich is like a mad axeman when it comes to chopping heads. Frank hasn’t got the experience to manage a Chelsea team built on rejects, and a shaky start could lead to an early sacking.

 

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The Top Four:

1st – Manchester City – Best squad and manager in the league. It will be a real disappointment if they fail to retain their title.
2nd – Liverpool – Haven’t added much to their squad this summer except for some upcoming stars, but I reckon their attack and Klopp’s tactics can carry them to 2nd place.
3rd – Tottenham – If Harry Kane stays fit for the season, I expect Tottenham to keep up the pace with the two teams above.
4th – Arsenal – Made a few good additions to their squad this summer, but worry for their defence.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Norwich City – They were in a mix with Burnley and Newcastle, but in the end, I went for Norwich as the other two have more PL experience.
19th – Brighton – I think Graham Potter is a decent manager, but don’t know if he can do much with the squad he has.
20th – Sheffield United – Not sure if they have the squad to keep themselves up this year.

One to watch:

Bernando Silva – Integral part to one of the best Premier League teams in history, and I expect him to continue his fine form from last season and Nations League.

A rising star to watch:

Morgan Gibbs-White – I’ve seen Gibbs-White play a few times now, and I have always been amazed by his quality.

The signing of the summer:

Dani Ceballos – His silky skills and close dribbling remind me of Santi Cazorla in his peak at Arsenal.

Flop of the season:

Ayoze Perez – Always find Perez to be a bit of a weird player. Not a traditional number 9 and not quite a number 10. I’m not sure how Brendan Rodgers will fit him into his Leicester City team.

The first manager sacked:

Steve Bruce (Newcastle) – Despite being a Newcastle fan, the fact he used to manage Sunderland probably won’t do him any favours and I reckon they could turn on him pretty quickly.

 

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The Top Four:

1st – Manchester City – Pep has a well-oiled machine that has been further reinforced by the signing of Rodri who looked very good in the Community Shield.

2nd – Liverpool – Klopp has cultivated the best squad they’ve had in Premier League history. Potentially their failure to sign a world-class midfielder will mean that they remain in 2nd place.

3rd – Tottenham – NDombele is going to go down as potentially one of the signings of the summer. Poch has a settled squad, full of committed players who love him. Their shortcomings were in midfield last year and they have addressed that.

4th – Arsenal – The signings this year are at a much higher quality than previous years, we’re talking Wenger early days signing here. Especially compared to some of the poor signings we’ve seen over the last 5 years. Pepe should be a big hit, Ceballos as well. Front three terrifying but once again defensive shortcoming means 4th is the limit for them.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Newcastle – Benitez got the maximum out of a very limited squad last year. Bruce seems to be declining as a manager. They’ve lost their best player from last season, Ayoze Perez and Rondon isn’t returning.

19th – Brighton – Problem scoring goals and a lot will depend on how Maupay settles but Brighton they look short of goals again.

20th – Sheffield Utd – McBurnie is unproven in the Premier League. Mousset another uninspiring signing. They don’t look like they have the quality to stay up.

One to watch:

Pablo Fornals – West Ham stole a march on a player that in previous times a lot of La Liga teams would have been keen to sign but West Ham were able to outmuscle them financially. They’ve got a player that can really elevate them to the next level. An excellent technical player who is capable of the spectacular.

A rising star to watch:

Moussa Djenepro – Expect good things. Strong, direct dribbler. Was a threat at the African Cup of Nations for Mali. Could surprise a few people

The signing of the summer:

Nicolas Pepe – Lighting quick will be very dangerous on the counter-attack. Confident finisher and is he forms a front three with Laca and Auba, Arsenal could blow a lot of teams away.

Flop of the season:

Joelinton – Huge price tag likely struggling team, not an amazing goalscoring record and a lot of weight on young shoulders.

The first manager sacked:

Steve Bruce (Newcastle) – He was lucky to get the job, limited squad to work with. Lacks the organisational nous of Rafa Benitez, fans already not enamoured. Tough few months ahead.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – Have strengthened their squad in the one position they needed to (Rodri) and I think they’re too good not to win.

2nd – Liverpool – Don’t think it will be as close as last season but they are still well above the rest of the league.

3rd – Tottenham – Definitely made some good signings but don’t think it will be enough to overtake Liverpool.

4th – Arsenal – The Gunners will surprise people this year, think Pepe will do bits in the Prem.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Newcastle – Rafa’s gone, it’s game over.

19th – Brighton – Unconvinced with their signings, inexperienced manager. The writings on the wall.

20th – Sheffield Utd – Just doesn’t look like a Premier League worthy side to me. I’d like to see Ravel Morrison do well though.

One to watch:

Ravel Morrison – Although I don’t think Sheffield will do very well, I do believe he still has the quality to be a top player. His issue was always his attitude and it looks like he’s got a more level head on him these days. Could go either way but he definitely has the talent.

A rising star to watch:

Ben Johnson – Young fullback at West Ham who can play on either side. The Hammers don’t have a wealth of talent in these positions and Pellegrini has shown a lot of faith in him during pre-season.

The signing of the summer:

Sebastien Haller – Haller is the type of player that West Ham have been crying out for years. His pace and physicality fit the PL perfectly and if he finds his feet quickly could turn West Ham into genuine challengers for a place in Europe.

Flop of the season:

Joelinton – Big money for a relatively unproven frontman. I’m not sure he possesses the quality required to keep Newcastle afloat.

The first manager sacked:

Javi Gracia (Watford) – Feel like the wheels may fall off at Watford this season and we know they aren’t afraid of a new manager.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – They are the best team the Premier League has ever seen. Pep Guardiola is a born winner and the lack of changes to the squad should see familiar performances to last season.

2nd – Liverpool – Can see it being another weirdly brilliant and frustrating season at the same time. Can’t see many weak points, just a shame Man City are incredible.

3rd – Tottenham – Spurs have finally spent some money and they did so wisely. Can see the full-back positions cause them some defensive issues but with Kane, Lucas Moura and Son up top, they should comfortably qualify for the Champions League again.

4th – Arsenal – On paper, they could compete for the title. However, they are lobsided when comparing the quality at the top of the pitch to the back. Aubameyang, Lacazette and Pepe could make for some special viewing.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Brighton – Their squad is uninspiring and their manager isn’t experienced enough for the task ahead. Whilst Neal Maupay is a good coup, I don’t think it will be enough but they will come close to survival.

19th – Newcastle – Out with Rafa Benitez and in with Steve Bruce. That makes zero sense. Whilst the signings of Joelinton and Allan Saint-Maximin has given the Toon hope, they aren’t gritty enough for a relegation battle.

20th – Sheffield United – I love Chris Wilder but I feel his style of play that helped him work through the EFL ranks won’t have the same effect in the top-flight. Don’t think anyone knows their strongest starting eleven and haven’t signed much Premier league proven talent.

One to watch:

Jack Grealish – May seem a little obvious from the three promoted sides but he has matured massively since the Spurs links over a year ago. Now, captain of Aston Villa, he has become a more prominent dribbler, wins a ridiculous amount of fouls and his eye for goal is improving.

A rising star to watch:

Daniel James – Another player coming out of the Championship. I’ve never seen a footballer resemble roadrunner so much. Frightening pace. Will only develop more under Solskjaer and could be incredibly effective off the bench for Man Utd. Last season, got the opposition VERY frustrated and would win plenty of yellow and red cards.

The signing of the summer:

Youri Tielemens – Incredible talent. Was important for Leicester on loan last season in off the ball scenarios but now it is a permanent move and Youri is settled, I expect him to produce plenty of special moments for the Foxes.

Flop of the season:

Wesley Moraes – At his price tag, he looks to be Tammy Abraham’s replacement as Aston Villa’s main striker. However, he likes to drop off to collect the ball whilst Abraham stood on the last man for 90 minutes. Doesn’t fit the system, don’t see it working.

The first manager sacked:

Graham Potter (Brighton) – I know a lot of us here feel the same but shouldn’t that say something? Maupay could be a saving grace but doubt it. Uninspiring and inexperienced. Or am I just being a salty Swansea fan?

 

The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – The best club in the country, with the best squad and manager. The gap should be much wider.
2nd – Liverpool – Best back 5. Salah looks like he will recapture the form from 17/18 (18/19 was a bit of a dip). Extra year needed for Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joe Gomez and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
3rd – Manchester United – No champions league. Maguire huge signing. Wan Bissaka might be the best right back in the Prem. Back 5 has significantly improved. Still a couple of signings away from competing at the top.
4th – Tottenham – Arguably a better squad than last season with Ndombele. However, I have serious questions regarding Spurs back 5 (Lloris has been declining for 18 months now, and will KWP be ready to step up as first choice fullback?) Can Kane stay fit for an entire season?

The Bottom Three:

18th – Norwich – Will Pukki keep them up? Doubt it. Newcastle will be close… though I think Steve Bruce will do just enough.
19th – Brighton – Ageing team. Inexperienced manager.
20th – Sheffield United – Poor squad. Centre-midfielder is a centre back by trade and wasn’t good enough for the Championship (#Lundstrom).

One to watch:

Ross Barkley – Was going to go with McGinn (Villa) but Tom won’t be happy. So, Barkley. Set to play in the hole at Chelsea under Lampard. Can’t think of a more ideal person to develop under. With RLC injured, there’s little competition and Barkley should thrive in the free role. Oustanding pre-season so far.

A rising star to watch:

Phil Foden – A bit obvious, but genuinely one of the most impressive players I’ve seen in that role at that age. Reminds me of Jack Wilshere at a similar age. Outstanding movement and reading of the game – an absolute star in the making. Will play a much more prominent role this season with this being David Silva’s final season with City. One gem replaced by another gem.

The signing of the summer:

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – Will be in the discussion for best right back in the Premier League by the end of the season (with TAA). Signing for a decade-plus. Easily been United’s best player in pre-season already.

Flop of the season:

Paulo Dybala – United are lucky this was dodged so…
Leandro Trossard – Not convinced he will fit into the Premier League. Big transfer fee. The team would really have to change their style of play to suit Leandro.

The first manager sacked:

Graham Potter (Brighton) – Not convinced by the strength of the squad. Think Brighton will, unfortunately, struggle early in the season.

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The Top Four: 

1st – Liverpool – This is their year and I believe City will drop slightly whilst gunning for the Champions League.

2nd – Manchester City – Think Liverpool will pip them to it this year with Pep having other European conquests on his mind.

3rd – Tottenham – Ndombele is a terrific signing and I think they will stay the course, maybe winning a cup on the way.

4th – Arsenal – The strike force will ease the struggles away from home and I think Emery is a better manager than OGS and Lampard.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Burnley – As demonstrated last year, the Dyche magic has run out and I think they will struggle to get points.

19th – Brighton – The transformation in style from a new manager is a gamble, and I don’t think they can adjust in time without it seriously hurting them early on.

20th – Sheffield United – They haven’t bought well and good luck with the over-lapping CB’s.

One to watch: 

Che Adams – He will lead the line for the Saints and with a summer to build around Hasenhüttl, I believe the Saints will be a prolific side catching many off guard in the coming season.

He joined Southampton from Championship side Birmingham City this summer, for a fee around £15 million.

A rising star to watch:

Marcus Rashford – The Manchester United striker is still only 21, and by all accounts, I believe he is on course for a tremendous season under the guidance of OGS. 

This is the season the young English forward reaches another level and is talked about amongst the elite young forwards of Europe. 

The signing of the summer: 

Pablo Fornals – I think he is a terrific player and will bring a certain Payet-like factor to the Hammers. And he has mad skills.

Fornals joined West Ham United from Villarreal for around £24 million.

Flop of the season:

Moise Kean – A lot of hype is surrounding Moise Kean, and whilst I think he is a talented player, I think he may struggle to adapt in his first season in England. 

The 19-year-old joined Everton from Juventus for a fee of around £25 million.

The first manager sacked:

Roy Hodgson (Crystal Palace) – Palace are going to struggle and they love an early-season manager sacking.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – Looking stronger than ever with new signings Rodri & Cancelo (inbound).

2nd – Liverpool – Still an absolute force but haven’t bulked the squad out in the transfer window. Feel like there might be quite a gap between them and City.

3rd – Tottenham – Ndombele is a massive signing. If they can keep their main players fit, they will claim the 3rd place spot. Still, have a way to go to catch up with City & Liverpool though.

4th – Manchester United – Maguire and Wan-Bissaka are critical to their success this season. If they stay fit, I feel they could challenge for 3rd.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Norwich – Tough pick between Norwich and Villa. The Premier League is too competitive nowadays, Norwich are the worst of the rest in my opinion.

19th – Sheffield United – No particularly impressive signings, they’ll be heading straight back down.

20th – Brighton – On the brink of relegation last season, can’t see them sticking around for another season.

One to watch:

Dani Ceballos – Looked class in the u21 Euros, pulling the strings and helping Spain win the tournament. Can see him thriving with Arsenal’s quality in attack – Auba, Laca & Pepe.

A rising star to watch:

Moise Kean – Exciting times for Everton. They’ve been craving a quality striker since Lukaku left them. Kean could be that man.

The signing of the summer:

Sebastien Haller – Finally a quality striker for West Ham….hopefully. Was brilliant for Frankfurt and has impressed in the preseason, creating multiple chances for Hammer’s front four and bagging a goal.

Flop of the season:

Angelino – Hasn’t looked particularly convincing in the preseason – gave away a penalty (should’ve been two) against West Ham. Feel like he’ll get squeezed out by Zinchenko and Mendy if they are fit.

The first manager sacked:

Graham Potter (Brighton) – Can’t see Brighton staying up this season and a few too many early defeats will see Potter out the door.

 

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The Top Four: 

1st – Manchester City – Best squad and Manager in the league.
2nd – Liverpool – Incredible first 11 but lacking the squad depth of City.
3rd – Tottenham – Proven to be a top team in the last few seasons. This pick would change if Spurs don’t keep hold of Eriksen.
4th – Manchester United – 2 fantastic signings in Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire in positions Man Utd desperately needed replacements. Lacking the world-class forwards needed to finish higher. Ole’s at the Wheel and is driving United back to the Champions League…

The Bottom Three:

18th – Aston Villa – Have spent a lot in this transfer window, as did Fulham last year and we know how this worked out…
19th – Brighton – Brighton were dangerously close to falling to the Championship last year and now with a new manager, unproven in the Premier League, I can only see the Seagulls taking the dive.
20th – Newcastle – Lost their biggest asset in Benitez. Bottom of the pile for me.

One to watch:

Raheem Sterling – Sterling was arguably City’s best player last season and he’ll continue to be one of the first names on the team sheet in 2019/20. I see Sterling being just as fantastic this season as City cruise to their inevitable 3rd title in a row.
Sterling scored 17 goals and got 10 assists last season.

A rising star to watch:

Mason Greenwood – The two-footed 17-year-old’s breakout seems inevitable within the next 2-3 seasons. I’m banking on it being in 19/20.

The striker made appearances in some big matches last season including Manchester United’s incredible win against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League Round of 16. Watch this space.

The signing of the summer:

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – Was the 2nd best right-back in the league last season after Trent Alexander-Arnold, I can only see Wan-Bissaka being even better in 2019/20.

The 21-year-old joined the Red Devils from Crystal Palace this summer for a fee roughly around £50 million.

Flop of the season:

Nicolas Pepe – Was amazing in France last year but with the service Arsenal’s midfield offers, I can’t see the Ivorian living up to the hype this season.
The winger recently came to the Premier League from Lille where he scored 22 goals and got 11 assists.

The first manager sacked:

Steve Bruce (Newcastle) – I respect Steve Bruce greatly but has he got what it takes to give Mike Ashley what he wants this season? I don’t think so.

 

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The Top Four:

1st – Manchester City – With further additions in the summer and Kevin De Bruyne fully fit, it’s difficult to see anybody matching the sheer strength of City.

2nd – Liverpool – They’ve proven they can be consistent, but a big injury could rock the boat and it’s a huge ask for the starting XI to repeat last season’s efforts.

3rd – Tottenham – Pochettino has been backed in the transfer market and Harry Kane will be looking to score over 30 goals this season. They’ll be a force to be reckoned with.

4th – Arsenal – Pepe, Aubameyang and Lacazette will be out to prove that they’re the most potent attacking force in the league. The test for Emery will be to find a way to stop goals going in at the other end.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Sheffield United – It’ll be close, as ever, but Sheffield United look short on firepower.

19th – Brighton – They needed to do more in the transfer market and will struggle again.

20th – Norwich – The team is ill-equipped to deal with a season at the top level.

One to watch:

Moise Kean – Everton have never really found a Lukaku replacement and Kean could well be that.

A rising star to watch:

Harvey Elliott – Joined from Fulham, 16 years old and full of confidence. He’s looked so assured in pre-season and if Liverpool can go on a cup run, he has every chance of getting his opportunity.

The signing of the summer:

Rodri – Possibly been overlooked as he isn’t the most glamorous signing. He looked very comfortable in the Community Shield and is still young, he’ll dominate the City midfield for years to come.

Flop of the season:

Ayoze Perez – Leicester have overpaid for a player who didn’t particularly stand out at Newcastle. Overhyped and can’t see him living up to expectations.

The first manager sacked:

Chris Wilder (Sheffield United) – We’ve seen it so many times with owners who are desperate to keep their club’s in the Premier League. My bet is on the Sheffield United ownership to get twitchy before Christmas and pull the trigger.

 

The Top Four:

1st – Manchester City – Because of Pep Guardiola, no other reason needed.

2nd – Liverpool – Had a poor pre-season so will fall short once again.

3rd – Arsenal – Making moves in the transfer window, building a strong squad and Pepe is a great addition.

4th – Tottenham – Ndombele will keep them competing for a long time.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Southampton – Haven’t strengthened enough.

19th – Norwich – Lack of squad depth.

20th – Sheffield United – Lack of premier league experience will prove costly.

One to watch:

Youri Tielemans – He’s young, had half a season in the premier league and has a great reputation. Performed great and adjusted to the league quickly and seamlessly.

A rising star to watch:

Sean Longstaff – You’re wanted by Manchester United for a reason. Was a mainstay in the middle of Newcastle’s midfield at the back end of last season and has no sign of losing his place.

The signing of the summer:

Nicolas Pepe – Was in blistering form for Lille last season and was one of the players of the season. Second top goalscorer only to Mbappe and was only one of two players in Europe’s top 5 leagues to register over 20 goals and 10 assists. The other player was Lionel Messi…

Flop of the season:

Christian Pulisic – Will be compared too much to Hazard. Will need time to acclimatise to the premier league and lost his place to Jadon Sancho last season. Could not work out for him.

Pulisic has joined the Blues from Bundesliga club, Borussia Dortmund.

The first manager sacked:

Ralph Hasenhüttl (Southampton) – I don’t see the Saints doing well this season. Their signings are risky with little Premier League experience and the fans can quickly get frustrated.

 

The Top Four:

1st – Manchester City – Fully expecting another go at reaching 100 points this season. Man City and Liverpool are in a league of their own and I think man city will just about edge this one again.

2nd – Liverpool – As above. I can’t see any other team challenging for the top 2.

3rd – Tottenham – The arrival of Ndombele and the emergence of Kyle Walker-Peters replacing a poor Trippier last season will only strengthen them more.

4th – Manchester United – It is an absolute must than Man Utd finish in the top 4 this season. If Pogba has ambitions of Real Madrid he cannot afford to have another poor season and I think he will drive them forward this season.

The Bottom Three:

18th – Southampton – The writing has been on the wall for a while and I feel they have failed to make any signings that will improve them.

19th – Sheffield United – At least one relegated side will go down and out of the 3, Sheffield Utd are the weakest.

20th – Brighton – Brighton needed some good signings to keep them up this year but I can’t see much quality in their new arrivals.

One to watch:

Kyle Walker-Peters – Been lurking for a couple of seasons and now Trippier has moved on he will get his big chance to prove himself.

A rising star to watch:

Sean Longstaff – An injury-free season could see him push for the Euro 2020 squad, also look out for his potential centre mid partner and brother Matty Longstaff.

The signing of the summer:

Youri Tielemans – Amazing business by Leicester to sign him permanently. Will cement his place as one of the best centre mids in the Premier League this season.

Flop of the season:

Harry Maguire – To justify the price tag he needs to have a world-class season. He’s nowhere near the level of VVD or De Ligt. The spotlight will be on him this season but I don’t think he will shine.

The first manager sacked:

Graham Potter (Brighton) – Needed to strengthen but have failed to do so.

 

 

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Social Media Executive at Football Index - Arsenal & Leicester City advocate.

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