2021 has been a feast of football.
Indeed, with last season condensed into the kind of frantic schedule most supporters would never have seen before and a raft of international tournaments to sink our teeth into, these last few weeks have felt a little empty.
While there are many valid questions as to how much football is actually necessary to play, the fact we’ve pretty much gone cold turkey since the European Championships and Copa America have finished has been a strange shift.
There is just nothing quite like the feeling of a new season, especially now fans have returned to stadiums.
The new signings. The lovely kits. The trips around the country.
Optimism is aplenty.
Well, in some quarters, at least.
Sky Bet recently released their ‘Optimism Table’, a survey held in conjunction with YouGov that ranks each fanbase’s collective excitement ahead of the kick-off later this month.
Manchester City lead the way (9.09/10) after winning the Premier League at a canter last season with Chelsea just behind (8.82/10) having already conquered Europe during Thomas Tuchel’s brief stint in charge.
Fellow giants Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal sit 11th and 12th respectively as the likes of Leeds United (6th), West Ham United (7th) and Aston Villa (8th) look ahead to a new campaign following impressive seasons last time out.
Towards the bottom, Crystal Palace‘s busy summer has done little to excite their supporters at this stage if seems with Patrick Vieira’s side sitting 19th in the table. Still, it’s not quite as bad as the feelings at Newcastle United.
Bottom of the table (3.94/10) amid more takeover problems and a quiet summer on the transfer front, Steve Bruce’s side aren’t exactly heading into the new season full of joy.