We’re only six games into the new season and already this year’s Premier League is shaping up to be one of the most open and unpredictable years we have seen for a while.
Following managerial changes at Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea, there was always going to be a possibility that last season’s top three teams would struggle to adapt change in personnel.
However with the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool Tottenham and even Everton all strengthening their squads this year, the race for this season’s title is anyone’s guess.
With six games of the 38 gone Arsenal lead the way on 15 points out of a possible 18 with Arsene Wenger’s critics fading by the day. This year’s Arsenal side looks a much improved outfit compared to 12 months ago with players like Olivier Giroud and Aaron Ramsey demonstrating their ability which was at time questioned last season.
The signing of Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid was a major statement that the Gunners are determined to end their eight year trophy drought and re-establish their reputation as one of Europe’s top teams.
Liverpool are another team who are striving to reach the highs they were at a couple of years ago. So far this season they have looked a real force, as they continue to develop under Brendan Rodgers.
Daniel Sturridge has been the division’s most prolific striker with five league goals so far. Even better news for Liverpool fans is that Luis Suarez is now eligible to play following his ten match ban, he and Sturridge have formed a formidable partnership as good as you can find in Europe.
Tottenham may have sold the world’s most expensive footballer Garth Bale; however Andre Villas Boas seems to have spent the profits from the Welshman’s sale very wisely indeed.
Roberto Soldado, Christian Eriksen, Erik Lamela and Paulinho have all fitted in well to the Spurs system firing them to third in the league. After two years of narrowly missing out on Champions league qualification, Tottenham’s fans will be expecting a top four finish this time around, maybe even more.
With Jose Mourinho in charge, Chelsea will always be viewed as title contenders. The Special One‘s return to Stanford Bridge has so far been ok but nothing spectacular as yet.
His decisions to leave out last year’s player of the season Juan Mata has caused some frustration amongst the fans, while the Blues still appear to lack an out and out goal scorer. However Mourinho has done it all before and knows all the tricks in the book which could prove vital as the season unfolds.
At the start of the season Manchester City were many people’s favourites to reclaim the title they dramatically clinched in 2012. Their wealth from the clubs billionaire owners again prompted City to spend big this summer, signing Jesus Navas, Alvaro Negredo, Stevan Jovetic and Fernandinho for over £80 million.
New manager Manuel Pellegrini has already experienced the ultimate high after demolishing United in the Manchester derby. But results like Saturday’s defeat to Aston Villa will have to be ironed out if City are to live up to their early season expectations.
David Moyes always knew he would be taking on the hardest job in the world when he became Sir Alex Ferguson’s successor earlier this year.
Moyes’ United career may have just begun; however his tough start to the new campaign has raised a hint of concern amongst the supporters who have witnessed a derby day thumping followed by a 2-1 home defeat to West Brom.
Apart from Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie the squad appears to be lacking real world class players like they’ve had in the past, however as defending champions they can’t be written off and they should be in the mix come the end of the season.
Everton may not realistically be contenders for the title this year but after a strong start their certainly in with a chance of finishing in the top four. The Toffees have adapted to new manager Roberto Martinez’s passing philosophy that the Spaniard was admired for when managing Wigan.
Martinez may have lost Marouane Fellaini to United on deadline day, however he did manage to keep last year’s player of the season Leighton Baines while the capturing of James McCarthy from Wigan and Romelu Lukaku on loan from Chelsea, both have helped in Everton make solid start to Martinez’s reign.
It may be too early to draw any conclusions about where the title may or may not end up, but over the next few weeks and months it will soon become clear who is at the top to stay and who will simply fade into the background for another year.
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