The new Premier League season kicking off in less than a weeks’ time.
With the in mind, fans and pundits are already discussing whether any team in the division will be able to rival current champions Manchester City, never mind topple them by wrestling their crown from them. With several sides vying for a position in the top 4 this term, who will be the outfits to rival Pep’s side and could they beat them to first place?
Manchester United were City’s closest rivals in the Premier League last season but ended up 19 points short of their neighbours. United have added Fred and Diego Dalot so far this summer but haven’t strengthened enough so far to suggest they will get any closer to City this season. Mourinho has already expressed his dissatisfaction in regard to the club’s transfer activity and unless there are further additions of real quality, United may not be able to keep up.
Spurs have proven themselves to be strong campaigners consistently and with Harry Kane in their side they have goals guaranteed. There have been question marks levelled at the club for their lack of transfer activity, but they’ve managed to hold on to players such as Kane, Alli and Christian Eriksen, while manager Mauricio Pochettino has stuck around too. If they can add a little bit more quality before the window closes, they could rival City based on how consistent they can be.
In many people’s eyes, Liverpool are the side who will not only rival City, but potentially knock them off their perch too. They’ve proven they can beat any team on their day and have added real quality this summer, while also strengthening their weak points significantly. If they could add another elite centre back to their ranks, they could go close, especially if Mo Salah can recreate the form he showed last season. Jurgen Klopp’s side should be the ones to watch in 2018/19.
Chelsea could be a bit of an unknown quantity this season under new boss Maurizio Sarri. His Napoli side did well under his guidance, but the Premier League is a whole different ball game. If the players can take on board his ideas, they should go well, but with rumours of the likes of Thibaut Courtois, Willian and Eden Hazard heading for the exit door, it could be a season of transition before they mount an actual title challenge.
A new era has begun at Arsenal, with Unai Emery taking over from Arsene Wenger in the hot seat. The Gunners have been well off the pace for a while now and under Emery they should improve but it’s unlikely this will be the season where they can get anywhere close to the top two positions in the league. Progress will be key for Arsenal this season as they look to rebuild in order to be a threat again, sooner rather than later.