END OF SEASON: THE ROUND UP

2019/2020 SEASON ENCORE

Yep, it’s over. Took a while but we got there in the end, yes we did. I’m sure there are many moments and memories we will remember about this season but I won’t state the obvious. Instead lets take a moment and maybe a bow for Jurgen Klopp and the Liverpool class of 2019/20 for bringing home the crown after a 30 year hiatus. A season with unexpected turnarounds, a return to the champions league for a certain red devil and a return to the championship for a Harry Hornet (sorry Troy!!). Meanwhile Jose becomes a lillywhite, Arteta finally finds his Arsenal and Frank gives Chelsea the blues (well a top four finish ain’t bad).

CHAMPIONS

I am pretty certain the party and celebrations haven’t stopped since Liverpool were officially crowned champions. As the confetti dropped while Henderson hoisted the trophy in air, the fireworks rang out all over Liverpool. Fans and Supporters could be heard singing the popular medley…….and…… you’ll….. never walk…..(something along those lines) all over the country and possibly the world at large. Believe it or not they actually do have a huge following. Let us not forget they had the 80s on smash.

The team amassed a total of 99 points just falling short of breaking the all time record. If they hadn’t taken their foot of the gass during the closing stages of the season then perhaps they would have achieved the record. However, I’m sure they aren’t complaining, after all they are winners of the division. Can they defend a premier league title? Now that is a very interesting question, in my humblest opinion, I don’t think so. Man City will be hungry next year and Man United seem to have found a rhythm in identity and style under Ole (if you minus their last few performances that is).

TOP FOUR FINISH

The top four ended with winners Liverpool (obviously), runners up Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea with the latter two having to go down to the wire on the last day of the season. It is definitely a surprise for many that Man United are back in the champions league having started the season in an unconvincing fashion. There was a lot of scrutiny under Solskjaer and at times he looked odds on to be a managerial sacking casualty. However, credit to the owners for sticking with their man as the faith they showed in him proved to be the right decision. I believe the acquisition of Bruno Fernandes in the January transfer window made the biggest impact on this team.

Pep and City will be all smiles now knowing they will be back in the champions league having had the ruling to ban them from the competition overturned. They will go into battle next season after their team captain David Silva called it quits but with their financial clout, I’m sure they won’t struggle in finding an adequate replacement.

5th – 10th FINISH

Leicester, Tottenham, Wolves, Arsenal, Sheffield United and Burnley make up the rest of the top ten. The positioning of all the teams in this category could have gone either way but notably for Spurs, they have finished a topsy turvy above North London rivals Arsenal once again (me tinks its starting to become the norm hehehe!!!). Judging by the celebrations and embrace at the final whistle at the game against Crystal Palace, its fairly obvious that Tottenham are satisfied with gaining a place in the Europa League next season. Arsenal meanwhile have a trip to Wembley booked in yet another FA cup final against Chelsea. Some supporters feel exclusion from European commitment next season could aid their charge in an attempt to capture the league title (errr think again….definitely not happening!!).

Leicester will be kicking themselves for failing to make the top four having been 3rd in the league for the duration of the season (that’s football for you, it’s never over till its over). Brendan Rodgers has done a phenomenal job since taking over as manager. He turned a top 10 side into almost a top 4 side. The transition midway through the season reminded supporters of their 2016 heroics. Unfortunately, lightning did not strike twice and they will have to make do with the Europa League. Wolves, Sheffield United and Burnley gave a good account of themselves and thoroughly deserve their positions.

11th – 17th FINISH

For teams that finish within this category, I feel it’s almost like a bitter sweet victory. Happy not to have been relegated but bitter not to be in the top half of the table. Nevertheless, they will all be back for another crack at the campaign and will possibly look to give a better account next season. Everton will definitely finish in the top 10 next year and may well qualify for the Europa League also.

Aston Villa and West Ham battled till the very last day to ensure safety and won’t want to go through the same scenario again next season. If they apply themselves and make the right signings, they should be well clear of the relegation zone next season. Newcastle were hoping to have new owners and an influx of financial clout, however, the potential investors seem to have pulled out of the possible £300 million take over. This would potentially have put Newcastle back in the mix with the top clubs but I guess it will be a long summer of speculations.

RELEGATION

We have to say goodbye to Norwich, Watford and Bournemouth. Norwich were already finished before the season finale and both Watford and Bournemouth had a glimmer of hope. Unfortunately, they couldn’t escape the drop and will now have to face the reality of championship football next season.

Make no mistake, all 3 clubs are more than capable of gaining promotion back into the premier league but that championship league is probably one of the most difficult leagues teams compete in around the globe. We wish all of the clubs and personnel well but the show must and will go on.

Best in the business!!!! Champions 2019/2020!!!