The 2022/23 Premier League season has officially arrived! Release the confetti, put up the bunting and crack open the lager (other refreshments are available).
As such, you just know that predictions are in full swing across the globe with everyone from pundits, journalists, fans, bookmakers and supercomputers trying their hand at calling the final table nine months before it’s actually locked in.
However, the one table that you haven’t yet feasted your eyes upon is the one that you obviously care the very most about, the one that you’re gagging to get ahold of: the GIVEMESPORT prediction.
We predict the Premier League
Oh yes, it’s that time of year where your humble GMS writer disgraces himself by pretending that they actually have a footballing crystal ball that allows them to see what May will look like all the way back in August.
But for every forecast that I’ve bungled over the years, there have also been some inspired shouts such as correctly predicting the exact top four and its order for the 2020/21 season before a ball had been kicked.
Then again, this is the same supermarket-own-brand Nostradamus that thought Donny van de Beek, Harry Maguire and Ben Godfrey would be in last year’s Team of the Season, so it’s swings and roundabouts really.
Jokes aside, though, there is some level of skill that comes with the seemingly impossible task of foreseeing how an entire season of football will play out and I have indeed tried my upmost to get things absolutely spot on.
And yes, ladies and gentlemen, that does mean there will be some shocks along the way because if you think that each and every Premier League season plays by the book and as foretold, then you’re very much mistaken.
Predicted 2022/23 Premier League
So, without further ado, let’s throw caution to the wind and put my credibility on the chopping block as I take on the ultimately silly – but infinitely fun – task of predicting the final 2022/23 Premier League table:
I’m predicting it, you’re predicting it, your dad’s predicting it, Tom Cruise probably woke up this morning and whispered quietly into his postman’s ear: “I’m predicting Bournemouth to finish 20th in the Premier League this season.”
And it’s not for no reason because the jury is very much out on whether Scott Parker’s expansive and attacking football will translate to the Premier League when squad depth is at a premium.
Expect the Cherries to snatch a few unexpected results by playing direct to Dominic Solanke and Kieffer Moore, but it’s a simple equation for me: I can’t see them scoring enough and I can see them conceding too often.
Ralph Hasenhüttl’s Saints have an enviable record of proving me – and a lot of other people – wrong, but just like the Sean Dyche dream finally falling apart at Burnley, all good things must come to an end.
While I’ve got a lot of love for Southampton’s recent investment in youth, I have a hard time seeing Sékou Mara as the answer to their goalscoring issues and envisage a late, doomed scramble to survive having sacked Hasenhüttl in early 2023.
I really, really, really wanted to predict Fulham to stay up because the fact that the Cottagers seem to be playing switcheroo with Norwich City every season is a worrying sign of the cavity forming between the Championship and Premier League.
However, my gut just tells me that Marco Silva will be the first manager to go and that their defence will ultimately let them down despite the quality signings of João Palhinha, Bernd Leno and Andreas Pereira.
Ah, second-season-syndrome sucks. It’s a real thing, trust us, because Huddersfield Town, Sheffield United and Leeds United have all experienced it in recent years even if they haven’t necessarily gone down.
And that’s how we see the Bees shaping up in a sophomore year without Christian Eriksen, wading through brutal losing streaks along the way to a close-shave survival propped up by Ivan Toney’s critical supply of goals.
16. Leeds United
I’ll be honest and say that Leeds were a really difficult side to rank because I’m torn between my reservations surrounding Jesse Marsch being the right man for the club and how impressed I’ve been with their transfer business.
Nevertheless, I’ve opted to err on the side of pessimism because snapping up Brenden Aaronson, Luis Sinisterra and Marc Roca, though impressive, can only account so much for Kalvin Phillips and Raphinha’s departures.
15. Nottingham Forest
Throwing money at the transfer market and hoping for the best can often blow up in the face of newly-promoted sides, but rest assured that Forest have conducted their business in far more surgical style than it might seem at first.
The acquisitions of Taiwo Awoniyi, Omar Richards, Lewis O’Brien and Dean Henderson plug a lot of the gaps left behind by the departure of loan signings, while Jesse Lingard adds that little bit of pizzazz in attacking areas.
Plus, they also happen to have the most underrated manager in the whole division. Watch this space.
One of my more rebellious shouts, it must be said, because everybody seems to have the Toffees locked in for a place in the Championship, but I’m here to tell you that they’re going to surprise people in 2022/23.
Don’t get it twisted, 14th still isn’t great for a club of Everton’s stature, but Frank Lampard is a much better coach than he’s made out to be and will really reap the benefits of having a full pre-season to integrate his style of football.
Marry that to shrewd moves for James Tarkowski, Dwight McNeil and potentially Idrissa Gueye as well as the removal of the ‘oh my god, we’re going to get relegated’ panic and don’t be surprised if Everton never actually seem at risk of going down.
13. Wolverhampton Wanderers
Look, I’m a fan of Bruno Lage and think he has a lot of potential to be a great Premier League coach for years to come, but my nose tells me that there’s a tough, tough season on the horizon at Molineux.
The simple fact of the matter is that Wolves didn’t score enough goals last time out and the permanent acquisition of Hwang Hee-chan alone looks unlikely to fix that, particularly given Raúl Jiménez’s latest injury.
It only takes Jose Sa to experience a dip in form or for the move to a back four to falter, and Wolves could well be on course for a brutal year that sees a different manager in charge next season.
12. Brighton & Hove Albion
These mid-table places are incredibly fiddly, so don’t be surprised if Brighton finish anywhere between 10th and 15th, but I do foresee last season having been a high watermark for the Graham Potter project either way.
The end of this season could be a good time for the future England manager – in our eyes, at least – to call time on his tenure on the south coast as a tough transitionary year lies ahead without Yves Bissouma and Marc Cucurella.
11. Leicester City
On a similar note, I can’t help but get the feeling that ‘the times, they are a-changing’ at the King Power Stadium as a Leicester side flailing around the transfer market sheds Kasper Schmeichel and potentially Youri Tielemans.
Ultimately, an eighth-place finish last time out looked better than it actually was and we remain uneasy about the Foxes’ defensive options if they lose Wesley Fofana, so prepare yourselves for a potentially underwhelming coda to the Brendan Rodgers era.
10. Crystal Palace
One of those predictions that could easily look silly come May because this ultimately comes down to whether or not Patrick Vieira is the right man to steer the ship at Selhurst Park in the long run. There is, after all, a world in which Palace could go down this season.
However, I’m unabashedly succumbing to the positive vibes because there’s a really exciting project going on here in which the likes of Wilfried Zaha, Michael Olise, Marc Guehi and Eberechi Eze could bring about a top-half finish.
9. Aston Villa
Another tough one because Villa are such a hodgepodge of top-class players who are yet to be moulded into a coherent system and even when they’re close, the end result is often an exploitably narrow approach reliant on individual moments.
So why am I predicting them to improve this season? Well, it all comes down to my conviction that Steven Gerrard is a top manager destined for the Liverpool job and a near future where Villa’s rich pool of talent starts singing from the same hymn sheet.
8. Newcastle United
Sorry, Toon fans, but the Champions League anthem won’t be blaring out of the St. James’ Park speakers just yet, though we are predicting Newcastle to make great strides in their first full season under Eddie Howe.
While eighth might not leap off the page as a watershed moment for the north-east giants, the early signs of future glory will indeed be present as they start picking up more and more points off the big guns.
Not only am I predicting Nick Pope to make it into the Premier League Team of the Season, but I’ll also go out on a limb and forecast Bruno Guimarães to amass more than 15 goal contributions. You heard it here first.
7. West Ham United
Doubting David Moyes’ West Ham is a dangerous game and trust me, I know, because I predicted them to decline last season in a world where Michail Antonio was their only real recognised striker. But alas, they finished 7th.
As such, I just don’t have it in me to predict the Hammers to place any lower with Moyes still in the dugout, Declan Rice enduring at the heart of their midfield and the excellent Gianluca Scamacca finally solving their problems at centre forward.
The storm clouds are forming and vultures are circling at Stamford Bridge, so expect them to drop out of the Champions League places for the first time in four years as they experience teething problems under Todd Boehly’s stewardship.
While Raheem Sterling and Kalidou Koulibaly are great signings, the squad remains unbalanced and full of deadwood regardless with the addition of Cucurella, though exciting, ultimately not proving what the doctor ordered.
I expect Thomas Tuchel to either be sacked around March time or moved on as part of an amicable break-up in the summer of 2023.
Dun, dun, dun. In the interest of transparency, I’m actually an Arsenal fan, so it pains me to say that the Gunners will once again finish shy of the Champions League places. But all isn’t as it seems.
The reality of the situation is that the ‘big six’ is so strong that it’s very easy to miss out and I’m not actually predicting Arsenal to have a bad season. Rather, I see Mikel Arteta going from strength to strength and Gabriel Jesus living up to expectations.
As such, I predict Arsenal to finish with more points than season and perhaps even win the Europa League along the way, but that rising quality elsewhere will work against them.
4. Manchester United
There seems to be two schools of thought surrounding United‘s fortunes this season: Erik ten Hag is the second-coming of Sir Alex Ferguson and will make the club great again or the Red Devils are doomed and things will get even worse before they get better.
I’m in neither.
Rather, I think that Cristiano Ronaldo will stay and chip in with another 15 goals as Jadon Sancho improves, Raphael Varane steps up and Marcus Rashford comes back firing as a harder-to-beat United duly makes the top four.
It’s credit to Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp that predicting them to finish third feels like some sort of catastrophe, but rest assured that I’m still tipping them to be in the title hunt and just four, five or six points behind the eventual winners.
However, I’m inclined to think that the Reds won’t pursue City quite as closely as this time last year in a transitionary season where Darwin Nunez inherits the mantle from Sadio Mane and the pressure of having to ‘go again’ weighs hard.
2. Tottenham Hotspur
Have I lost my mind? Maybe, maybe, but hear me out for a second because Spurs are stirring up a dangerous cocktail of the finest transfer window of any Premier League club this summer and one of the best managers in the world.
Signing Ivan Perišić, Bissouma and Richarlison has instantly moulded Tottenham into an Antonio Conte team and one that – true to the coach’s achievements at Chelsea, Inter Milan and Juventus – will see them compete for the biggest trophies of all.
Look me in the eye and tell me that Conte launching a rogue title challenge that ultimately sees Spurs flop in the Champions League and leads to his unceremonious exit in 2023/24 isn’t something that you can picture.
1. Manchester City
Booooooring. I know, I know, but as much as I’m feeling renegade about predicting Spurs to make a title challenge, I’d be lying if I said that I genuinely think they’ll be able to best Pep Guardiola’s 90-points-a-season machine.
We are, after all, talking about a team that won the league last season without playing a recognised striker, who have now signed a recognised striker considered to be a future Ballon d’Or winner. If that’s not ominous, I don’t know what it is.
To be honest, I hope I’m wrong, because five title wins in six years for City would feel like the Premier League is losing its diversity of winners again, but it’s just so tough to envisage any other result.
Have we got it right?
Take your screenshots, set a reminder and prepare your ‘congratulations’ message because there’s absolutely no chance that a single one of my predictions is going to be an iota out of place.
I am, of course, taking the mickey because the more likely scenario is that I will crawl into a cave of shame having deleted my Twitter account when Spurs are relegated and Southampton qualify for the Champions League.
However, for as long as there’s a slight chance that I’ve pulled off a minor miracle and people will start asking me for the lottery numbers, it’s going to be fascinating to watch yet another year of the world’s best league.
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What can possibly go wrong?!