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2019/20 Premier League season at Superbru

The Premier League returns next week with Liverpool facing Norwich at Anfield on Friday the 9th of August. A long and action-packed football season begins this weekend at Superbru with the Championship, Scottish Premiership and PSL all getting underway but it's the Premier League that is our main event in terms of popularity and I can't wait for it to get started.

Here's a reminder of the games we have available for you along with my thoughts on how this season may shape up.

Our games

All three of our Premier League tournaments from last season are available to play once again for the 2019/20 campaign. As you may well have already read in an article a couple of weeks ago, our Exact Score Challenge is also back meaning you could pick up some prizes this season in our predictor game if you manage an especially good round.

The Predictor game is nice and simple to play, we're delighted to already have lots of you involved and it tends to bring out the most competitive side of people when you're taking on friends/colleagues throughout the campaign. Make sure you get your pools set up soon if you haven't already to give people time to get signed up before Liverpool vs. Norwich!

If you're more into fantasy football, or want to play some fantasy alongside the predictor, we have two games available. The first is our full fantasy game where you select a squad of 15 players before settling on a starting XI for each week, while our 5-a-side tournament is a daily fantasy game where you select an individual team for each and every day of Premier League action.

With all three of those games in mind, here are my thoughts on what we can expect in the 2019/20 Premier League season.

The Big Six

You won’t be surprised to hear that I make Manchester City favourites for the title once again this year. It’s hard to see any other team getting their hands on the trophy until Pep Guardiola has left England. City’s business off the pitch is often as good as their performances on it, with Rodri being the latest excellent signing that makes total sense in order to ensure the midfield three isn’t weakened if and when Fernandinho declines.

Liverpool are likely to remain the team that finishes closest to City but I can’t see them remaining in the title race for as long as they did last year. In my opinion, Liverpool’s playing style and comparative lack of squad depth means they’re far more likely to ‘drop off’ this season than Pep Guardiola’s side are and they’ve had a pretty dreadful pre-season so far. Of course, current results don’t really matter and Sunday’s Community Shield will give us a better understanding of where both teams are at, but the Reds also have to deal with key players returning late from summer tournaments (Salah, Firmino, Alisson and particularly Mane).

That leaves us with the same four teams as last year battling for the remaining Champions League slots. I feel Tottenham should make the top four fairly comfortably this season after finally making some signings of their own this summer which leaves a tough call between Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United for fourth. Spurs have their first full season at their new stadium coming up, Pochettino still in charge and Tanguy Ndombele providing a much-needed midfield engine which should prove particularly handy in the games against their top four rivals.

My concerns about the other three contenders all relate to the defensive side of things. Arsenal, as things stand, appear to be ignoring their main issues in the transfer market once again (they still really need a powerful CDM and CB), Manchester United’s backline and midfield still looks short as we enter the final week or so of the window and Chelsea look as though they’ll be having more issues at the back than when going forward while adapting to life under Frank Lampard.

Arsenal and United do of course still have the opportunity to bring in more players and strengthen ahead of the season (Chelsea don’t), though both Solskjaer and Lampard appear determined to work with younger players as they look to introduce intense approaches with high pressing. Manchester United v Chelsea in Round One should be very interesting! In my opinion, it’s United who have the pressure on them this season with the largest expectations of a top four spot but Arsenal and Chelsea currently seem the more capable of achieving Champions League football. That said, if Harry Maguire and a new central midfielder arrive at Old Trafford before the season starts then I’d have more confidence in them taking fourth place.

The Best of the Rest

Though Watford threatened to finish 7th for much of last season, Wolves, Everton and Leicester ended up 7th, 8th and 9th respectively and I expect those three teams to be the ones closest to breaking up the top six again this year. Of the trio, I'm backing Leicester to have the most successful league campaign. The permanent signing of Youri Tielemans along with Ayoze Perez feels like good business for the Foxes and under Brendan Rodgers I expect them to compete well in the vast majority of games. They have a pretty tough start to the season so may not pick up too many points initially but I think they’ll be very close to 6th by May.

Wolves are also strengthening an already impressive squad but their involvement in Europe has to be considered. I think they'll be far more competitive in the Europa League than Burnley were last season but that will ultimately result in more games and potential Premier League slip-ups. Everton have the potential for a big season but Idrissa Gueye is a huge, huge loss. With Marco Silva’s teams already suspect defensively, I feel the Toffees may concede too many goals this season unless they can find a strong replacement for Gueye.

To be relegated

When you’re looking for likely relegation candidates you always have to consider the newly promoted sides first and I’m struggling to see how Sheffield United and Norwich will stay up this season. Aston Villa have the luxury of a larger transfer budget (and the fact that they are a bigger, more attractive club for potential signings) and have certainly used it this summer so you have to make them the most likely of the three to survive. We saw Huddersfield manage to escape relegation two seasons ago with a squad that arguably had less quality than Norwich and Sheffield Utd but it would still be a surprise to see either of them compete in the 2020/21 Premier League in my opinion.

Since I don’t think it will be Villa joining them, who will be the third side to be relegated come May? For me, you have to worry about Newcastle without Rafa Benitez. Joelinton is a strong addition to the squad but when you consider the Magpies have lost both Rondon and Perez, they aren’t any stronger up front this season and they’ve lost a Champions League winning manager. The atmosphere at St James’ Park is understandably set to be very negative and with some tough opening fixtures - Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool in their first five - I’m not sure they’ll be able to recover from a slow start as they did last season.

Crystal Palace are another team that could struggle, especially if Zaha leaves, whilst it will be interesting to see how Brighton get on with their Graham Potter experiment. I think the Seagulls will be strong enough at home to stay up relatively comfortably though, just like Burnley and Southampton.

Get involved

Let me know how you expect the Premier League table to look at the end of the season in the comment section below! Just like the last Premier League campaign, I’ll be posting my picks each week so that we can discuss every game throughout the new season. I’m also considering a fantasy equivalent, naming a few players that are worth considering for your full and 5-a-side teams ahead of each round so keep an eye out for that if you’re interested!

For all other content relating to our tournaments, social media is the place to go. We’ll have regular updates on Facebook and Twitter but our Instagram is entirely dedicated to football so make sure you’re following us there if you’re particularly interested in our football games.

Best of luck for the new season! 38 challenging (but also hopefully fun) rounds coming up…
13,021 caps
Good evening Jack!

My Top Ten:
1. Manchester City
2. Liverpool FC
3. Tottenham Hotspur
4. Chelsea
5. Arsenal
6. Manchester United
7. Wolverhampton Wolves
8. Everton
9. Leicester City
10. Watford

Relegated Teams:
Norwich City
Sheffield United
Aston Villa
31 Jul 17:01
1,293 cap
Man City
Arsenal 2 Aug 22:43
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