Why do we love the Premier League?
It attracts some of the best players and managers in the world and offers drama cannot be found in any other league.
Jose Mourinho, who has managed in Portugal, England, Spain and Italy, believes the Premier League is above all other leagues in Europe.
“Can you tell me now who is going to win the Premier League? You can’t tell me,” Mourinho said in 2014.
“Can you say which one of the top five is going to be outside of the Champions League? You can’t say.”
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And that’s just it. England’s top flight is unpredictable, with a team fighting to avoid relegation still able to defeat a team in the top four.
We’ve already seen that this season, with Norwich City beating defending champions Manchester City in September.
They’ve listed the most shocking result in the Premier League from each year since 2002.
Let’s get into it.
2002: Sunderland 2-1 Liverpool
Sunderland lost 27 matches in the 2002/03 season and were relegated to Division One after collecting just 19 points.
But one of the few highs came with a 2-1 win against Gerard Houllier’s Liverpool in December 2002.
The Black Cats had gone over 500 minutes without scoring heading into the game but goals from Gavin McCann and Michael Proctor sealed a surprise victory.
2003: Arsenal 2-3 Leeds
Arsenal relinquished the Premier League title to Manchester United after losing at home to Leeds United.
In the 36th game of the season, they were beaten by a Leeds side that would be relegated the following campaign.
Mark Viduka scored in the 88th minute to hand The Whites all three points at Highbury.
2004: Wolves 1-0 Man Utd
Man United’s title hopes in 2003/04 were dealt a blow when they lost 1-0 to Wolves.
Wolves were in the relegation zone when they welcomed a Man United side that was aiming for the title to Molineux.
Sir Alex Ferguson’s side dominated possession but Kenny Miller’s 66th-minute goal handed the hosts a shock win.
2005: West Brom 2-1 Arsenal
Arsenal travelled to the Hawthorns to take on a West Brom side that had won just one of their opening eight league matches at the start of the 2005/06 season.
But goals from former Gunner Kanu and Darren Carter gave West Brom an upset win.
The Baggies would go on to get relegated at the end of the season.
2006: Middlesbrough 3-0 Chelsea
Chelsea arrived at Middlesbrough in February 2006 in first place and having lost just one game all season.
But Jose Mourinho’s side were undone at Riverside Stadium through goals from Fabio Rochemback, Stewart Downing and Yakubu.
That wasn’t enough to prevent the Blues from cruising to the title.
2007: Portsmouth 7-4 Reading
Chaos ensued when Portsmouth welcomed Reading to Fratton Park in September 2007.
The match is the highest-scoring game in Premier League history and even has its own Wikipedia page.
Benjani netted a hat-trick for the hosts and there were nine different scorers in total.
Portsmouth: Benjani 6’, 37’, 70’, Hermann Hreidarsson 55’, Niko Kranjcar 75’, Ivar Ingimarsson 81’ (og), Sulley Muntari 90+2’ (pen)
Reading: Stephen Hunt 45’, Dave Kitson 48’, Shane Long 79’, Sol Campbell 90+4’ (og)
2008: Middlesbrough 8-1 Man City
The 2007/08 season ended in humiliation for Manchester City.
Richard Dunne was shown a red card in the 15th minute and it was downhill from there, with Afonso Alves scoring a hat-trick for Boro.
It was Sven-Goran Eriksson’s final game in charge of City. What a terrible way for his reign to end.
2009: Wigan 3-1 Chelsea
Nobody could have predicted this.
Chelsea were spectacular in the 2009/10 campaign, winning a Premier League and FA Cup double.
They scored more than 100 goals in the league and had icons in Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard, John Terry and Petr Cech.
But on September 26, 2009, they suffered their first defeat of the season in remarkable fashion.
Goals from Titus Bramble, Hugo Rodallega and Paul Scharner handed Roberto Martinez’s side an unlikely win.
Wigan would finish the season just six points above the relegation zone. They lost 9-1 to Tottenham Hotspur, and Chelsea thrashed them 8-0 in the reverse fixture.
And yet they were still able to defeat Carlo Ancelotti’s side in handsome style at the DW Stadium.
2010: Liverpool 1-2 Blackpool
Blackpool were a lot of fun to watch in the 2010/11 season.
They were involved in some high-scoring games, including a 5-3 defeat to Everton, a 4-3 win over Bolton Wanderers and a 6-0 loss to Arsenal.
While their attacking style ultimately cost them – they were relegated to the Championship, conceding a whopping 78 goals in total – there were some highs along the way.
One included a 2-1 win against Liverpool at Anfield on October 3, 2010.
Charlie Adam’s penalty and Luke Varney’s strike gave Ian Holloway’s side a 2-0 lead and they held on after Sotirios Kyrgiakos pulled one back.
The result left Liverpool in the relegation zone after seven matches of the 2010/11 campaign.
2011: Man United 1-6 Man City
The 2011/12 season was the one in which the power shift in Manchester began to move to the Etihad Stadium.
Man City won their first ever Premier League title and their 6-1 win at Old Trafford on October 23, 2011, signalled the shift in dominance.
Teams just don’t win 6-1 at Man United’s stadium. But Sir Alex Ferguson’s side were left reeling, with United capitulating in the second half.
They conceded five goals after having Jonny Evans sent off in the 47th minute, falling to their worst home defeat since February 1955.
2012: Wigan 1-0 Man United
Man United suffered another disappointing defeat in the 2011/12 season, this time against Wigan.
The Red Devils were in a great position to win the title. Beat Wigan and they would hold an eight-point lead with five games remaining.
But Wigan had other ideas. Shaun Maloney scored early in the second half to stun Ferguson’s side and breathe new life into the title race.
The rest is history.
2013: Chelsea 0-1 QPR
Rafa Benitez wasn’t a popular figure during his brief spell in charge of Chelsea and a 1-0 defeat against west London rivals QPR only further soured things.
Rangers were bottom of the table and were facing a Chelsea side that was searching for a fifth-straight win.
But a solitary QPR goal – from former Chelsea winger Shaun Wright-Phillips, no less – secured a shock result.
Chelsea’s team included Fernando Torres, Frank Lampard and Oscar, with Eden Hazard and Juan Mata coming off the bench.
They had 26 shots and 64 per cent possession, but couldn’t find a way past QPR’s wall.
2014: Chelsea 6-0 Arsenal
Arsene Wenger’s 1,000th game in charge of Arsenal was a disaster.
The game was over after 17 minutes. Chelsea were 3-0 up by this point through goals from Samuel Eto’o, Andre Schurrle and Eden Hazard, and Arsenal had seen Kieran Gibbs sent off in a case of mistaken identity.
Oscar’s brace and Mohamed Salah’s goal completed the rout.
2015: Stoke 6-1 Liverpool
Steven Gerrard’s final home Liverpool game ended in a 3-1 defeat to Crystal Palace and worse was to come a week later.
The Liverpool midfielder’s last ever outing for the club he spent his entire career at was a humiliating 6-1 defeat against Stoke City.
Yes. Not even a top six side. Stoke City.
The Potters were 5-0 up at half-time and added a sixth through former Red Peter Crouch late on.
The only consolation for Gerrard was his 70th minute goal.
2016: Man City 1-3 Leicester City
Leicester City arrived at the Etihad Stadium on February 6, 2016 in first place and having lost just two Premier League games in the 2015/16 season.
Yet many thought that this game against second-placed City would signal the beginning of the end of their dream to become champions.
Boy were they mistaken.
The Foxes scored early on through Robert Huth and added a second shortly after half-time through Riyad Mahrez.
Huth added another on the hour mark and Sergio Aguero’s late goal proved to be nothing more than a consolation.
The victory handed Claudio Ranieri’s side a five-point lead at the top of the table and they wouldn’t give it up.
2017: Chelsea 2-3 Burnley
Chelsea’s defence of their Premier League title got off to an awful start.
Antonio Conte’s side lost to a Burnley team that managed just one away win the previous season.
The Blues were 3-0 down at half-time and had two players sent off.
Despite Alvaro Morata and David Luiz’s best efforts, they couldn’t snatch a point.
The game provided a hint about what was to come at Stamford Bridge.
2018: Man City 2-3 Crystal Palace
Who would have thought that Crystal Palace would be the team to end Man City’s 100% home record in 2018/19 after nine straight wins?
Pep Guardiola’s side were averaging three goals a game at the Etihad Stadium and were expected to thump a Palace team that was flirting near the relegation zone.
The Eagles had been beaten 5-0 in their two previous trips to City but came away with a spectacular win in what manager Roy Hodgson described as “one of those bonanza days”.
Andros Townsend’s incredible 30-yard volley – later nominated for the Puskas Award – was the highlight in a shock win for Palace.
2019: Norwich City 3-2 Man City
Another year, another upset at the hands of Guardiola’s City.
Newly-promoted Norwich City ended City’s 18-game unbeaten run in the Premier League with a magnificent display in September.
The Canaries were without eight players but, through a mix of disciplined defending and ambition in possession, found a way to win.
City were no match for Teemu Pukki, who made it six goals in five league games, and still haven’t managed to recover their deficit to Liverpool in the title race.
It’s easy to see why the Premier League is the most-watched league in the world.
For sheer entertainment, nothing beats it.
Hodgson can take his Crystal Palace side to Man City and leave with a win. Portsmouth and Reading can compete in an 11-game thriller. Gerrard can end his Liverpool career with a 6-1 defeat.
Every year, you just don’t know what’s going to happen.