So they say that if you’re top of the league at this time you are in the best position to win the league. It’s also true to say that if you’re at the bottom, you’re destined for the drop. So let’s see who was where this time last year and see where they ended up to give some predictions to where teams are going to finish this year.
Last season after 20 or so games this is how the table looked.
So half way through the season and Chelsea sat top of the table ahead of Manchester United by two points and Arsenal by four points. The battle for 4th spot was a four-way between Tottenham, Manchester City, Aston Villa and Liverpool, with only 4 points difference between 4th placed Tottenham and 7th placed Liverpool. Portsmouth were rooted to the bottom of the league with 14 points and above them Hull, Bolton and West Ham were on 18 points, Wigan and Wolves on 19 points and Burnley on 20 points.
As the season continued, Forms changed, points were won and dropped and teams change postion and some stayed put. . Chelsea won the league by just one point with Manchester United runners’ up. Arsenal by the end of the season were fighting to keep third place from Tottenham and Manchester City and did so finishing on 5 points clear of Tottenham on 75 points. Tottenham finished three points clear of City, Tottenham beat Manchester City on the penultimate game of the season 1-0 to guarantee them fourth place, leaving Manchester City 5th, three points ahead of Aston Villa and 4 points ahead of Liverpool who finished 7th. Everton had a great second half to the season finishing 8th on 61 points. After 20 games they only had 22 points and were on 12th so to finish on 61 points was a great accomplishment. Bolton too had a great second half of the season as they were in a relegation battle on 18 points but finished the season 14 placed on 39 points. Hull and Portsmouth were not as lucky, especially Portsmouth who were docked nine points for entering administration condeeming them to relegation, and Hull finished on 30 points . Burnley who had a stunning start to the season couldn’t keep it up and only picked up 10 points finishing on 30 points and along with Hull and Portsmouth were relegated.
Now that we have looked at what happened last season let’s have a look at the current league table.
This season is a lot closer than last seasons with Wolves bottom on 18 points with four points the difference between them and 13th placed Everton who are on 22 points, and from what we saw with Burnley last season, teams like, Newcastle and Blackpool who have had good starts to the season could still falter and find themselves in the relegation zone, even though thy are 10th and 11th respectively. Chelsea have hit a run of bad form and find themselves 5th on 35 points. Last season didn’t see any change in the league positions from 1st all the way down to 7th. If that were the chase this season, it would be a tragic season for Chelsea, Arsenal would again finish third and Tottenham will again gain Champions League Football, while Sunderland and Bolton fans would be greatly pleased with their teams’ progress. Bolton who this time last year were in a relegation battle, but this season are in a fight for Europe. Everton last season had resurgence and are more than capable to do so again. Will Liverpool be able to regain some momentum and surge up the table and do better than 7th last season, and if they did would that keep Roy Hodgson his job? Are Newcastle and Blackpool able to sustain their good form? and who is going to go down, at the moment things don’t look good for Wolves who are playing some good football but are unlucky on results, if that doesn’t change they could be relegated, but more so at Aston Villa where things have got worse and worse since Martin O’Neill left and hasn’t got much better since Houllier has taken over. If things don’t chance soon for them they could have a similar fate to Newcastle 2 years ago and be one of the big Premiership teams to go down.
One thing is for certain and that is the second half to the season is going to be an exciting one with more twist and turns than last season.