Premier League Preview: The Potential Aspirants Of The Top-Six
The next season of the Premier League is right around the corner and table dynamics will certainly be fascinating.
Increasingly over the years, the traditional top six positions have been crumbling and giant echelons of power have seen erosion.
As such, one can no longer be certain about how the top of the table will look like. The transfer windows that some of the big clubs have been having further complicates matters.
Having said that, it would be of some merit to discuss the aspirants of those positions.
At the top, the Premier League title race may not be as straightforward as many pundits reckon it to be. While by a pure measure of roster strength, Liverpool do remain the favourites, the clubs immediately below them will fancy their chances. Klopp has the personnel for the job but squad quality is a facet he’ll still have to face.
In contrast, a Lionel Messi-less Man City will be revamping their hopes as Pep Guardiola goes back to the drawing board on other transfers. In that regard, it is Chelsea who could instead make a real serious run at the title. Frank Lampard could attempt this solely on the back of the transfer window he’s had, with the likes of Kai Havertz, Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Thiago Silva, and Ben Chilwell adding to the potential that their roster already had in plenty.
As for Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s Manchester United, the rebuild is still likely to keep them at bay for a real title challenge although the top-three spot could certainly be bettered upon as the Red Devils seek to up the ante with a bolstered midfield.
It is from here that the potential is really something. The fourth to sixth positions of the table could see serious contention in a manner that had not been the case for a while now. On paper, it is solely the Europa League spots that are on the line but the sheer quality that some teams have shown in the recent past could see these spots become vital transitionary stepping stones.
Leicester City are the obvious favourites to keep, if not better their spots. Given how painstakingly close Brendan Rodgers’ side came to Champions League football last season, it is no surprise that they could make a proper effort this time around. Of course, that potential has been seething since the dream run itself and it could go either way.
Everton could certainly throw up a surprise or two in this race. Carlo Ancelotti is not a man to be content with mid-table football and the Merseyside club is certainly preparing for an ace campaign. The summer additions of James Rodriguez and Abdoulaye Doucouré will certainly help their attacking ambitions.
Similarly, Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur will not be aiming for a botched season. The London side looked to be serious title contenders a few seasons ago and the Special One will be rallying for the redemption of a similar hope, no matter how grim their transfer endeavours may seem.
Likewise, Arsenal cannot be entirely discounted either. Their acquisitions show potential and Mikel Arteta’s emerging system could reclaim something still. In that regard, the dynamics of the top six will be certainly powered by these two rivals trying to maintain their traditional spots.
Lastly, the Premier League, by design, could still throw up a surprise. Wolverhampton Wanderers came close last campaign and will have that momentum driving them forward. Leeds United, now financially stable, could certainly mark their return to top-tier football with the bang that was their hallmark in past decades.
All in all, nothing can be said for certain and this weekend’s fixtures will mark the start of a long journey in these exceptional times.