2015-16 Premier League Predictions
Last season was one of the most unpredictable in Premier League history as pre-season relegation candidates Leicester City defied all the odds to romp to the title by 10 clear points over nearest rivals Arsenal. But the Foxes’ triumph wasn’t the only surprise of the 2015-16 season.
Reigning champions Chelsea suffered a monumental collapse that resulted in the sacking of Jose Mourinho, while 20-time former league winners Manchester United once again finished out of the top four, despite a mammoth spending spree.
Tottenham Hotspur also raised a few eyebrows by remaining in the title race before falling away in the last few weeks, while Manchester City fell well below par with a 66-point haul that left them in fourth place.
So can this season live up to the excitement of last? And will it be any more predictable for those punters looking to enter the Futures or Ante Post markets?
New faces set to have an impact
Well at first glance, it may seem easy to suggest that Leicester City will struggle to retain their title. After all, Manchester City now have former Barcelona and Bayern Munch boss Pep Guardiola at the helm, while their cross-city rivals have replaced Louis van Gaal with the controversial but successful Portuguese coach Jose Mourinho.
Over on Merseyside, Jurgen Klopp will start his first full season as Liverpool gaffer with a team that has been enhanced by his own signings, while down in London, Chelsea have recruited three-time Serie A-winning coach Antonio Conte.
Add to that the stable presences of Arsene Wenger at Arsenal and Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham Hotspur and we already have seven realistic contenders for the top four places.
Outside of those seven, there is a strong argument to suggest we can also add last season’s sixth and seventh placed teams, West Ham United and Southampton, into the equation as potential top-four challengers.
West Ham have strengthened their squad with half a dozen new signings and will also be playing their first season in their new stadium in Stratford. Meanwhile, Southampton have improved on their league position in each of the last four seasons despite consistently selling their best players and working with different coaches.
So let’s start with a few predictions. Firstly, Leicester City will not retain their Premier League crown, in fact, they will not even finish in the top four. Claudio Ranieri’s team performed something akin to a footballing miracle last year and as much as it would be satisfying to watch the Foxes secure back-to-back titles, all common sense suggests that it won’t happen again. With Champions League football now on their agenda and a host of world class managers snapping at their heels, the heat will be just too much for the defending champions.
Secondly, Chelsea will not finish as low as 10th place. The Blues’ fall from grace was almost as shocking as Leicester’s rise and once again, the chances of that happening again are slim. With a new world class coach at the helm, the London club should be right in mix for a top four finish this season.
But while this season will not be as shocking as last, it could prove to be even more exciting. With so many top coaches now gathered in the league, we could see one of the most fiercely-contested title battles in years.
The Main Contenders
We predict that this year’s Premier League champions will come from a group of six teams: Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool.
Three of those clubs (City, United and Chelsea) have new managers, and of those three, only Jose Mourinho at Manchester United has previous Premier League experience. However, both Pep Guardiola (at Barcelona and Bayern Munich) and Antonio Conte (at Juventus) have shown previously that they know what it takes to win titles at the first time of asking.
Veteran Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will be kicking himself after finishing above all of his usual rivals last season but still missing out on the title. It has now been 13 years since the Gunners bagged the league crown and last season must feel like a massive missed opportunity. It will be interesting to see how the North Londoners react to that disappointment.
Likewise, last season must have felt like a wasted opportunity for Spurs who remained in contention for the title before fading away. However, Mauricio Pochettino seems to be building something special and White Hart Lane and his team will once again prove difficult to beat this year.
It’s impossible to ignore Jurgen Klopp, the German made an instant impact at Liverpool last season leading the Reds to two finals in his first eight months on charge. He has expressed his satisfaction with the squad now at his disposal having made significant reinforcements over the summer, and they laid down an ominous marker by cruising to a 4-0 win over a strong Barcelona side at Wembley last Saturday.
Top four predictions
Jose Mourinho will give Manchester United an instant boost and guide them to a top four finish – but can he land the title at the first attempt? Pep Guardiola has won six league titles in his seven seasons as a coach – the only exception being a second-place finish behind Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid. These two will battle it out for the ultimate prize with City just pipping their rivals to the title.
Jurgen Klopp has no European football to worry about this season and will have the chance to prepare his side properly for every game. Liverpool could be this season’s surprise package and look a good bet for one of the other two Champions League spots.
The final place in the top four will be straight battle between Chelsea and Arsenal with Wenger’s men just edging out their fellow Londoners who could take a while adjusting to a new system under Italian coach Antonio Conte.
- Manchester City
- Manchester United
- Manchester City to win the league can be backed at 5/2
- Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool Tricast can be backed at 33/1
- Liverpool to finish in the top four can be backed at 11/8
For the best betting options and great prices, we recommend Betfair. New customers can get enhanced prices on Manchester city or Manchester United to win the Premier League. Visit Betfair for more details.
Last season was one of the most unpredictable in Premier League history as pre-season relegation candidates Leic…