Monday, 25 May 2009
Thank God for Tottenham, Newcastle, Stoke and Fulham.
So it is all over and as I look back over nine months of action and then look at the Premiership table, one haunting question occurs, "What was the point?" All that effort, all that money spent and the Premiership table is almost exactly as any pundit without a club affiliation would have predicted before the season kicked off.
If I go back to my own predictions, Villa failed to break into the top 4 but that was always hope more than expectation, a desperate desire to see the Arsenal-Chelsea-Liverpool-Man Utd monopoly broken. As it was, they had a pretty good shot at doing it and added some spice to the top of the table for half a season. Yes they faded but that shows the danger of European football with a thin squad - Everton and Fulham beware!
The Mancs were an easy call to win the title, especially after the appointment of Scolari. I said that one would end in tears, predicting he would be sacked before Christmas. Not a bad forecast but you didn't have to be a genius to call it. Liverpool and Arsenal ending up trophy-less were also easy enough to predict.
Down at the bottom, I called relegation to be between the three promoted clubs and Boro. Although I thought Fulham might also struggle.
Look at the rest of the table. Every team outside of the four identified in the title are exactly where you would have expected them to be. Everton in the top 5/6; anybody surprised? West Ham just inside the top 10; just as we expected? Man City in mid table; that was always on the cards, big cash injection or not. And so it goes on.
Fulham have surprised us and so have Stoke, which is why I called Woy and Pullis as leading contenders for Manager of the Season. Newcastle and Tottenham, meanwhile have underperformed. Although I bet on Newcastle to go down at Christmas, I didn't see it coming back in August. And Tottenham? Well, before the sale of Barbietop and Keane, I was expecting them, along with Villa, to push hard for a top 4 slot.
And the point of this post? If the division becomes too predictable, interest will inevitably decline. What's the point of playing a 38 game season if only 4 teams are going to finish in surprising positions?
Posted by Hammersfan at 08:39