Well it is about time. The Premier League season kicks off on Friday night with Leicester taking on Arsenal at Emirates Stadium.
It’s sure to be another enthralling, exhilarating and exciting campaign as champions Chelsea look to stave off their hungry rivals as they attempt to defend their title.
It is impossible to predict the outcome of the season, given the turbulent nature of England’s top-flight, but here at Tribal we’re a bit more optimistic than that, so we have gone and compiled a bunch of predictions from our writers and let’s just say they don’t all agree…
Chris Beattie: Tough to name a title winner, but I don’t see Manchester City making the top four. Yeah, they’ve spent a lot of money on decent players, but there’s nothing there that actually makes a huge difference to what Pep Guardiola had last season. I question whether any team can win the league without a centre-forward in England. And as for individuals, I reckon young Sandro Ramirez at Everton will surprise many. Wouldn’t be a surprise if we see his agents putting it about before Christmas that bigger clubs are in for him.
Paul Vegas: Listen, don’t worry about where the title’s going. The big story from this season will be Everton – and Wayne Rooney. Everton and Rooney will finish above not only Liverpool, but also Manchester United. Rooney will lead them into the Champions League and also lead England into the World Cup. And one to watch? Jordon Ibe. He’ll have a breakout year with Bournemouth – who will finish in the top half of the table.
Carlos Volcano: It’s Pep’s year. Guardiola will lead Manchester City to the title – and by some distance. And the prediction is by the end of the season we won’t be talking about back three’s but City’s tiki-taka – everyone will be copying the master technician Guardiola. Also, Chicharito to rebuild his reputation with West Ham after a tough year at Bayer Leverkusen.
Ian Ferris: On the 25th anniversary season of the Premier League the Champions will be Manchester City followed by Chelsea, Manchester Utd and Tottenham. And Sergio Aguero for the Premiership Golden Boot. Meanwhile, at season’s end Huddersfield, Burnley and Brighton will be set to ply their trade in the the Championship next season.
Phillip Ekunem: West Ham will qualify for the Europa League this season, either through winning a cup competition or securing a Europa league finish – it could be a repeat of the Payet season. I strongly believe Michy Batshuayi will be Chelsea‘s main striker this season. Alvaro Morata may have been signed for an astronomical fee, but Batshuayi looks determined to fight for his place in the Chelsea team and he could very well win that battle.
Alex Keble: Liverpool to win the title: Jurgen Klopp’s team only fell away last season when Sadio Mane went to the Africa Cup of Nations, so if he stays fit – and links well with Mohamed Salah – then Liverpool will be better prepared for the season ahead than either Manchester club. What’s more, Philippe Coutinho‘s new deeper role should make him the standout player of the season.
Andrew Maclean: Arsenal will win the league this season. Hear me out for a second. Chelsea and Leicester, the two previous title winners, didn’t play in Europe during their championship win. Granted, Arsenal will be a part of the Europa League, but expect Arsene Wenger to use the competition as a training run for his squad players. Finishing outside the top-four was a travesty in May, but now that sights are set towards the 2017/18 season, the Gunners have a clearer road to glory. Also expect Alexandre Lacazette to bag 20+ goals.
Freddie Taylor: Tottenham will drop out of the top-four. Cracks have already started to appear in Spurs’ tight budget this summer. Their failure to bring in any talent is telling. And even though their squad is filled to the brim with talented players, their competitors have improved also, which will mean Tottenham will fall short. Harry Kane will win the Golden Boot, although it will be for a lost cause.
Joe Baker: Manchester United have the team structure to win the Premier League. With the firepower of a proven goalscorer in Romelu Lukaku and steel in Matic, Mourinho has finally got the ingredients to make a real push for the title this season. Without Coutinho, Liverpool will struggle to make the top 4, whilst Arsenal may struggle for consistency again, especially in the centre defence where unlike Man United and Chelsea, they have failed to add a strong centre-back for stability.
Vyom Chaudhary: Manchester United to finish outside of top four. Jose Mourinho has failed to finish in top four in his last two seasons in Premier League and I think this trend will continue. Many see them as title contenders but I don’t think they have a squad strong enough to compete on multiple fronts.