The international break this past weekend means that we are now a third of the way done with the Premier League season. Three weeks into the season, I wrote a post with my Premier League table predictions giving reason to why and where most of the teams would finish. Now that we have 12 games under our belts for the 2019/2020 season, I am going to go back and make the changes to what I think might happen at the end of Matchday 38.
Here were my predictions three weeks into the season.
West Ham United
Brighton & Hove Albion
Now for the new predictions.
Liverpool has been playing catch up to Manchester City for the past two seasons; however, this year has been shaping up to be their year. Now with Manchester City in fourth and an eight-point gap separating them from second place Leicester City, the light at the end of the tunnel is just getting brighter and brighter for the Reds. All they have to do now is not mess up.
This one is a tough call. Chelsea and Leicester are tied on points and are only separated now by goal difference. However, the recent form of the Blues suggests that they will eventually take over the Foxes for second place. We will see on February 1st when Leicester and Chelsea face off who comes out on top and who falls below Manchester City.
3. Manchester City
The reign of Manchester City is slowly coming to an end. Though they still have a world-class squad, they are already at three losses on the season, and its week 12. For perspective, last season City barely held off Liverpool winning the league by just one point; that season, they lost four games in 38. City has dropped too many points to recover this season and turn it into their third Premier League trophy in a row. Nevertheless, they are still fully capable of holding a top-three spot.
4. Leicester City
It is bound to be a very close race for second place this season with three teams all sitting within one point of each other. In the end, the Foxes will get the short end of it finishing fourth. Although still in a Champions League position, they will look to next season to possibly clinch a spot in the top three. These last three picks were tough and could fluctuate a lot throughout the remainder of the season.
5. Manchester United
This was an emotional pick for me, and I do see United finishing in the top five only if they sign good players in the January transfer window. If they fail to sign two attacking players and maybe a left-back United’s fate could already be settled the moment that the window shuts. Should United fail to sign the players they desperately need in January top five hopes could turn into just dreams.
Arsenal’s season has already been one of ups and downs. The first few weeks saw a side that could give the top three a run for its money. Now, with problems in the technical area, top five ambitions for the Gunners may be a thing of the past. If Manchester United do what they need to do this January, Arsenal could sit sixth or lower come Matchday 38.
7. Sheffield United
A side that has shocked us all this season as they currently sit in fifth. However, some would ask how long Sheffield can keep this run of good form going. Matchday 13’s match against Manchester United is sure to be the test as both sides sit in similar situations. If Sheffield does end up holding on to their fifth-place position, it would be the clubs highest finish ever in the Premier League and bring Europa League football to Bramall Lane.
8. Wolverhampton Wolves
A rough start for the Wolves saw them sit second to the bottom after five weeks of matches. However, after two wins in a row against Watford and Manchester City, they shot straight up in the table as they now sit eighth. They have turned their season around as their hopes for another Europa League football next season still lives on.
Since entering the league in 2015 for the first time in club history, Bournemouth has held its own among some of England’s great clubs. They have avoided the relegation zone for the last four years, only coming as close as 16th in their first season in England’s top league. They have shown constant improvement throughout each season and maybe one day could find themselves playing some European football.
10. Crystal Palace
Another side that has had a very up and down season, Crystal Palace, currently sits in 12th. However, they are in that pack of about nine teams all in the battle for fifth place. Nevertheless, Palace most likely will fall short, finishing in the middle of the table. If they fail to hold onto key players this coming transfer window like Wilfred Zaha and Patrick van Aanholt they could be selling away their top of the table and even Premier League dreams.
Burnley has shown good form in recent years. However, they always have a dip somewhere in the season that causes them to fall out of their preferred position. This season they started strong sitting in sixth after three weeks, but failing to keep consistent form has cost them and will continue to cost them as they fall short once more.
12. Tottenham Hotspur
Tottenham’s season has been slowly getting worse and worse. It all started after their surprise loss to equally as bad Newcastle United on Matchday 3. From there, they bounced around fifth to ninth, eventually now sitting 14th and winless in their last five games. Now that Tottenham has sacked Mauricio Pochettino, it will be interesting to see how the new manager fixes things before it is too late. They have had success in their Champions League group minus their 7-2 loss to Bayern Munich at home. Premier League wise I can’t see them coming out of this hole they’ve dug that easily.
13. Brighton & Hove Albion
Brighton has shown at certain points this season that they can compete for higher spots on the table. One time is when they beat a struggling Tottenham 3-0 at home. Now they find themselves in the pack of nine teams all competing for top seven spots. Nevertheless, as the season goes on, this pack of teams will be stretched out into more defined placements, placing Brighton in most likey in 13th.
14. Newcastle United
Similar to that of Wolves, Newcastle has done well to turn around their season in these past couples of weeks. Earlier in the season saw them teetering along the line of the relegation zone. Now that they are back to decent form, another mid-table finish for the Magpies could be on the horizon. They do have a tough schedule ahead with Manchester City in two weeks and Leicester on the first of the year. We will see how they can hold on to another season in the top flight.
15. West Ham United
West Ham looked very promising at the beginning of the season, only losing once in their first seven games. However, since then, the Irons have drastically dropped off the map as they are now winless in their last five matches and sit in 16th. I don't see much else changing for the London side as a bottom of the table finish is very likely.
Everton has struggled this year. They have had a few good games but not enough to mask the number of losses they picked up. Even though they had a good performance over Southampton in their last match, winning 2-1, they didn't show enough for me to see them have a great finish this season. With key players like Andre Gomes and Bernard out for an unknown amount of time and Jean-Philippe Gbamin out until at least January, it will be tough for Everton to make many improvements.
Just two weeks ago, Watford sat bottom of the table and winless on the season. Now with their win against then second to last Norwich, it has propelled them into 18th. This gives them a chance to climb their way out of the relegation zone and save their season. I see them scraping by, swapping positions with Aston Villa, and sending them back down to the Championship.
18. Aston Villa
Another team on a downward spiral, Aston Villa, have lost three straight games. Now, they are at risk of trading positions with up and coming, Watford. At this point, their only advantage over the three teams in the relegation zone is their goal difference as they have a -3. Watford, who are just below them, have a -15 this big margin gives them a cushion that may end up saving their season.
There is only one word for Southampton's season this far, abysmal. Not only were they thrashed by Leicester 9-0 at home on Matchday 10, but they are also winless in seven matches with a tough schedule still to come. Their only hope now is that Watford will fall off even after gaining their first win of the season. It’s hard to come back from being the victim of the joint worse loss in Premier League history.
20. Norwich City
A lot of people thought that with the help of the surprise form of Teemu Pukki, Norwich was in for a quality season. However, the success of one player does not guarantee the success of the team. They did manage a monumental victory over reigning Premier League champions, Manchester City. However, it isn’t enough as they currently sit dead last after a loss to Watford on Matchday 12. Sad to see the Canaries work so hard to come up just to be sent back down.
These last 12 weeks have been very entertaining for Premier League fans and viewers. We are a third of the way through the season, and we have already seen some shocking results and performances from various clubs and players. From Manchester City sitting in fourth, Tottenham laying low in 14th, and little Sheffield United being in 5th place, this season has been nothing short of unconventional. Though we have 26 games left to play, there is no telling what can happen next.