English Premier League – Season Predictions – 2012/13
The 2012-13 English Premier League season is set to start on August 18, 2012 with Manchester United looking to unseat rivals Manchester City. It was a dramatic finish to last season as Man City scored a late goal to edge United for the league title.
So, who will win the title this season and which clubs will be relegated? Below are my predictions for the upcoming season.
Who wins the title?
The race is likely only between City and United with an outside chance to Chelsea and slim chance to Arsenal. City have not made many moves in the transfer window but are a very deep squad that should only be improved from last season. United have added a few players including former Arsenal striker Robin van Persie.
The addition of RVP improves United’s chances but City remain the favorites. United will need to get more consistency from Nani and significant contributions from Ashley Young, Anderson, and Michael Carrick. There also could be concern for United’s back-line with an aging Rio Ferdinand along with the youthful Chris Smalling and Phil Jones.
Chelsea are hard to predict and will need a strong start. If they can find the form they showed in last season’s UEFA Champions League, it could be a three-way title race. While they could surprise, Chelsea just don’t appear to have the consistency and quite enough quality to compete with the Manchester clubs.
Predicting the title winner this early is always tough but I think it’s going to be City. They are just too strong and if all things go well could win the title by a comfortable margin.
Who will get relegated?
The relegation battle can often be more entertaining than the title race as clubs fight to stay in the EPL. Last season was one of the exceptions as none of the promoted sides were relegated and all three survived. Unfortunately, that probably won’t be the case for Reading, Southampton, and West Ham United.
West Ham have been in the EPL recently and led by Sam Allardyce. He’s an experienced manager who knows what it takes to avoid relegation. This leaves Reading and Southampton. Both teams will probably struggle to finish in the top half and likely be in the relegation battle for most of the season.
Other teams that should be in danger are Wigan, Norwich City, Swansea City, QPR, and Aston Villa. Norwich and Swansea surprised many with great seasons but are going to be prone to second season slumps (look at Reading for recent history). Wigan have escaped for several seasons but may have run out of lives.
I’m predicting that Southampton, Wigan , and Norwich City will be relegated. It’s really a guess for who gets relegated but it will probably be at least one newly promoted, a team that has barely escaped relegation in recent seasons (Wigan), and a club who will have a letdown after a strong season (Norwich).
What will the final table look like?
- Manchester City
- Manchester United
- Tottenham Hotspur
- Newcastle United
- Stoke City
- Aston Villa
- West Ham United
- Queens Park Rangers
- Swansea City
- West Bromwich Albion
- Norwich City
- Wigan Athletic