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Among all the latest debates in the past month or so I've come to a realization that separates our top 6 fan-clubs into 2 groups. In the last 10 years the only clubs to win the premiership have been Chelsea, United, and City (excluding the last year). Go back 20 years and you can add Arsenal to the group as well (last won in '03-'04). It's become apparent from the majority of the users on here that those top 3 teams that have won the title most recently continue to crave more silverware and have become dependent on that in terms of success. Meanwhile, Arsenal, Spurs, and Liverpool seem to be in their own group of measuring success as long as they play good football, go far in competitions, and show team togetherness, and youth promotion (maybe not Liverpool so much on the last one). It's just funny to see the debates where you have 1 group saying that winning is all that matters because that's what they're used to. Then we have the "almost" teams that seek out other parts of the sports to fulfill their own happiness. Let's just remember that success means different things to different people. So when we're on each other's forums, let's keep that into consideration when we are huffing and puffing about this and that about who's better, more successful, how much this club spends, etc...
+2
It's hard once you taste winning to not measure success in the same manner
+1
Agree with most of what you said Shaymoose,just curious with the Liverpool and there youth promotion statement. Are you referring to the PL specifically or?
I definitely see your point, but don't entirely agree that there are established "groups."

For instance, one reason (among many) that LvG was told to go was because his football was not up to scratch. It was slow and boring, even though he won us an FA Cup. Even with Mourinho, it has clearly been emphasized that he's expected to win all the while playing the "United way"--in other words, adapt his pragmatism to club standards.

In addition, there's still a big push at United for youth. Nowhere near on the scale of the setup through the 90s, but we still have that long streak of including a player from the youth setup in every matchday squad. Every club will take pride in one of "their own" coming through the ranks.

Similarly, I wouldn't peg Arsenal, Liverpool, and Spurs as being in the same group. All those 3 teams are still driven by the desire to win silver (among other things, of course), but they all 3 come from different places. Even United this season will determine success not by winning the title (though there are other trophies up for grabs). Talk to any City fan this season, and I'm sure they'll also talk about the desire to cement a footballing philosophy; Pep sure has. I just think these barometers for success are constantly changing.

So essentially I think that each individual club defines success in its own way. That said, I still think you're right that this should be acknowledged, +1 for the post
+1
I don't think it is as easy as that to peg different clubs into such defined brackets. It is important to understand what stage of development each club is at and that gives a lot of context and depth to how we measure success or progress.

Now I don't think there is any real football fan who does not value their team playing an attractive style - although yes certainly pragmatism at certain times does make sense. If I take Spurs for example growing up I've never really seen us compete for silverware at a high level or challenge for the title and now I've seen us do it for 2 consecutive seasons - I think us fans see things differently because all of our teams are at different levels of development. I don't think that necessarily means Spurs, Liverpool and Arsenal fans don't value winning and trophies as much as City, United and Chelsea fans I think it speaks more to how well our respective teams are doing now considering where we were maybe 10 years ago; and certainly I can say Spurs have come a long way so for me yes that is success but like I said it really depends from club to club - I think it is difficult to compare.
Of all mentioned in that group Spurs are the only one who stand out and whose achievement is more resounding. They did not need huge injection of cash to join the big boys club and did it while playing youth which is a slap in the face for their immediate neighbours that to any other member of the top 6.

We all enjoy and want to watch fluid entertaining footbal but if you ask a City fan now if he would like Pep to sacrifice more fluent play for compact defence I bet they wouldnt mind. It is good to have an identity but when you compete in elite sports you must be ready to adapt because top opponents will always find a way to nullify you.

I think for Chelsea, Spurs and Liverpool their method is working for them and are basically above expectations atm, United seem to be recovering but Arsenal and City are underperforming and certainly below expectations of their fans and pundits. The cliche yopu cannot keep doing the same thing all the time and expect different result comes to mind. This is not to say anyone is right or wrong but when results dont meet expectations, when input is below output, when the level of investment doesnt produce an equally proportionate profit then perhaps it is time to re-evalute and refocus so that one doesnt fall into the abyss of irrelevance. There are 4 spots with 6 teams competing there are abound to be 2 who miss out every season for the foreseeable future.
+3
Everyone including Sunderland fans crave for WIN!!!

United , City , Chelsea fans talk more about winning because winning is the only way to grow the club. i.e Get better sponsorship deals , Attract Top managers, Attract Top players , Attract more global Fan, Increase club revenue etc.

Although Liverpool have not won PL in many years. I have seen the desire in the fans and club to win a PL title for decades.Just like any Top club they have tried different managers different players and spend good amount of money hoping to build good squad and win PL.

Yes playing good football is a major need for fans, but der is nothing stopping any club from playing good football and winning the tile. People who come with excuse "We dont care about winning trophies. We care about good football and Philosophy to develop youth etc" need to stop fooling themselves because every club that won PL over last 20 years have done that and played good football to win PL titles.

United , City , Chelsea , Liverpool , Arsenal all have scored more are less same no. of goals every season over last decade. So, I really dont understand what is this good football blah blah bulls*t fans comeup with.

One simple example about why Winning is important - Chelsea , United and City Who have shared PL over last 12 years(Nike & Adidas) others?

Any stats that can prove teams who dint play best football in the league won the title?
'United , City , Chelsea , Liverpool , Arsenal all have scored more are less same no. of goals every season over last decade. So, I really dont understand what is this good football blah blah bulls*t fans comeup with.'

. Just look at Arsenal's 4-0 win last week and Spurs 4-0 one. You could tell the difference in quality of the performance with naked eye, which stats won't.

PS: Not trying to stir s**t about whats more important but simply pointing out that stats/scoreline can be misleading.
Suraj same way Arsenal 3-0 win against Chelsea, Chelsea 4-0 against united , Chelsea 5-0 against Everton...in all these games you can see the quality with naked eye.

which proves my points about every team playing good football over a season. Ofcourse der will be game which you will have to win 1-0 because the opponents are too stubborn to breakdown.

PL is won over 38 games and not 10-15 high scoring free flowing games against mid-table teams. Yes winning in style sounds cool...but nobody will win 38 games in style atleast not in competitive league like PL
I think ALL teams are playing equally great football this season.
Last season Leicester played the best
Season before it was Chelsea/Man City
And the season before was Liverpool/ man city
Bundesliga to debut video review for 2017-18 season

Good start...I hope PL will be next!
When?
Next season Bundesliga to start the review and they might roll-out to other leagues after
SkySports predictor has both the Manchester clubs missing out on Top 4 this season.

Based on form, fixtures and home advantage they predict the table to end:

Chelsea 82
Tottenham 76
Arsenal 74
Liverpool 71
Man Utd 69
Man City 68

On current form I would say that order looks very possible. Anyone disagree? What alternate orders do you predict?

http://www.skysports.com/football/news/11096/10734321/premier-predictor-manchester-united-and-manchester-city-to-miss-out-on-champions-league
+3
Could easily see it

Edit: by that, I mean that I could easily see anything. This league is not predictable
+1
lol! so Chelsea can afford to drop 21 points(double of points dropped so far) in next 17 games and yet win the title?.
Also i dont think united and city will collect only 28 points out of remaining 17 games.
Anything is possible with my defence lol. We got Vardy having parties, Everton Massacrers, the list can still go on until the end, just have to watch and see how things turn out, maybe Jesus can save us, we have two so hopefully one can pull us through.
+2
Liverpool 85
Chelsea 80
Arsenal 71
Tottenham 70
Man City 67
Man utd 65
+1
how can you trust something that say's spurs will finish above arsenal
Tottenham 96
Chelsea 82
Liverpool 75
Man United 70
Arsenal 67
Man City 62
This is when I realize that if City does not get 3rd place we are doomed. The fourth place remains static, solid and firm as a rock week in week out, no matter what happens around it. Pep has a harder job on his hands than he realizes.

Sorry guys for the constant 4th place jokes :P anything to up my spirits atm
+1
It's kinda ironic that the two managers that people consider best in the world are sitting 5th and 6th.
I think Mourinho is better placed because he is building up strength by strength. I personally feel Pep has more potential but currently his team is by far the lost one.

But to your point - yes - the Manchester teams should be up there, not battling it outside of the CL group. The EPL has come a long way
I think it's a bit tiresome that people joke about Arsenal finishing 4th. There is a difference between 4th and top 4.

For example, we finished 2nd and 3rd in the last 2 seasons and people still interchange that for a 4th placed finish to suit a joke that has been flogged to death.
+2
^ dont get too serious mate its about old habits and all.
I know, I'm just grumbling.

Back to the OP, I don't think City are doomed even if they finish outside top 4. The owners have clearly wanted to bring Pep in for a long time. Now they have got their man I expect they will back him in the transfer market and City can afford to drop out of the CL places.

Guardiola is a manager of such calibre that players will still want to sign for and play for him even if they are not competing in CL for one season, and City can afford to offer top wages. The same can be said of Utd.

Arsenal would be in more trouble than City if we were to fall out. Wenger is out of contract in the summer and, if we do not extend his contract, the calibre of any replacement combined with our reluctance to match top wages will have a bigger impact on who we can afford to sign and the general direction of the club.

Arsenal are in a very real danger of doing what Liverpool did under Rodgers - slipping out of Europe and struggling to attract first choice targets.

+1
United deserve to be 6th based on the wasted chances they've squandered this season. 7 draws this season so far and in most of those draws they had a chance to finish the game in the first half.
Lol Deffy sorry man I know the joke has been done to death. But every week I check the standings and guess what I see :P

There was some statistic somewhere about the % of weeks Arsenal have spent in that position and it was staggering. I can dig that out sometime.

All said and done, this does not mean I do not respect Arsenal, far from it. After all, Arsenal has had the natural respect of the entire footballing community for keeping its identity for so long without any external funding or help.
Oh must be so tough deffy...... people have been giving Chelsea a hard time for over spending for years even though CFC has been profitable and spending less than many club for years. Just roll with it. Many clubs wish they were always top 4 and you can laugh at them too
+1
Hands off 4th place, it's ours. Get your greasy mitts away from it Tomi.
Zilch, we already frustrated the bejeezus out of you by clinching it last year. We could pull of a blinder this year too. No matter how difficult it can be done hahah
Share your thoughts on Juventus new logo please.

IMO its really awful with No bull, No crown, No stars...why would they even do such a drastic change to logo of club with great history and popularity all over the world.

Yes, we have seen many clubs make small changes over the years, but nothing of this magnitude
When flat design has gone too far...
How do we feel? How do we *S@^^@&#&&$ feel?


+4
I hate it
+1
I like it.
LOL Conte reminds me of scarface poster but with a football instead of a gun
So much squealing over the 3 stars and now...pouff
I like it for a product of some kind. A drink or a toilet roll. It just conveys zero about a football club image
+3
Stupidest thing ever. Why change a perfectly fine logo?
+1
Nice logo for Juve the brand, not Juve the football club.
+1
Team off the season so far? Here's mine and I'm going 3-4-2-1.

Courtois
Walker
Luiz
Alderweireld
Van Dijk
Rose
Kante
Pogba
Sanchez
Hazard
Costa

I wanted Mane in there so bad but I went with Sanchez. Ibrahimovic was close too but Costa gets the nod. Wanyama was close after pocketing Kante twice but Kante has been immense otherwise.

I think Costa has to be in there, maybe in place of Hazard or Mane. Also not sure about Courtois I think Lloris or De Gea have been better than him so far.

Edit: Ah so you changed your mind
Courtois has most clean sheets by a mile so I went with him.

@doc: yeah I must have changed it while you was typing.
+1
-----------Courtois ------------

Azip---Van Dijk-----Luiz----Rose-

--------Kante--Hendo-------

Sanchez------Dele------Hazard

-----------Costa-------------

Hard choice to pick btw Luiz and Alderweireld..but i went for Luiz for now.
Clean sheets don't give a definitive insight into who the best goalkeeper is; I believe Lloris and De Gea have far superior save success rates than Courtois does but hey they are all top keepers and it is hard to pick one.
Any analysis or stats that can prove Lloris and De Gea have much better save success rate compared to Courtois ? Not saying Courtois is better, but its hard to pick the best without showing stats
Courtois
Alderweireld-Luiz-Vertonghen
Antonio-Kante-Dembele-Rose
Sanchez-Costa-Hazard.

This my dream first Chelsea first team for next season :D

Pickford
Azpi Alderweireld jones
Sanchez Erikson Kante Coutinho Hazard
Costa Zlatan
Jones is a interesting pick since he has only played 10 games this season.
Jones should not be included. He hasn't played enough football. If anything Rojo should be above Jones and that's coming from someone who is not a fan of Rojo. I'd pick any CB from spurs or Chelsea above the united pair ATM.
+1
I don't think Hazard should be in and Wanyama ahead of Kante.
Anyone not picking Walker is taking the piss.
Goalie: Loris : Plays a larger role for Spurs (Captain)
Defense: Walker - Alderweireld - Luiz - Rose (Stats speak for itself)
Midfield: Wanyama - Kante - Eriksen - Dele - Hazard (Really came down to personal preference)
Striker: Zatlan (First season in EPL - 14 goals)


Pep needs a pep talk.
+9
He needs messi
+2
...and xavi, iniesta etc lol
+3
Form is temporary. Class is permanent.
+2
For me its not about man city position on the table. Its about these big losses against decent teams. Pep needs to fix that then he'll be set.
Jesus to rescue Pep? wait and watch!
I think he needs time to adapt..

City is the 2nd true test to his management skill, he passed at Barca.. but let's get real, Bayern was a walk in the park.. He needs time and I think he will get time. Not just time.. Lots of money too.
Pep will be fine in a year or two. Honestly his biggest failure right now is with the British media.
Pep was a major flop at Bayern with all the players he had and the freedom in transfers that was offered to him
The Bayern team accomplished pretty little under him, other than getting wrecked on the counter vs all kinds of opposition
City need rebuilding from scratch and I don't think he is the right man. He didn't really rebuild anything at Barca either, he had a strong core of players who came good for him. His tactics were great but let's not kid, if it was anyone other than Messi Xavi Iniesta they would not have had so much success
City don't have that core group of players who can be moulded into a world beating side. I'll be surprised if he turns this side over because it would be a first for him - he has never managed a average side like City in his past jobs and turned them around. Both the teams he managed were pretty much world class squads even before he took over .
+3
@Vaaz

I think Barca was on a major decline when he took over.. He reshaped it to what they are.
+1
^ Eh, no. They just were going through a bad phase. But they already had the players coming through Rijkaards last campaign such as Messi, xavi and andres were already a part of the first team setup. Captain Puyol was already a mainstay in defence, and so was Abidal, Yaya you're and Thierry Henry

What Pep did was bring Busquets through the youth ranks along with Pedro who proved to be an excellent backup. Pique was also bought back Also Dani Alves was a great signing and he made few others during his time there too like Villa

What I mean to say is that the core of the team which formed the backbone of Pep's team at Barca was already there when he took over.

At City I don't find the core players around whom Pep is supposed to build his side. Compared to what he had at Barca, this city job looks herculean.

Aguero is WC striker but he is no Messi, Silva is getting old and so is Yaya Toure. He hoped Gundogan would be a hit but it was not to be. Fernandinho is still good in the middle but his suspensions have costed them dearly: Mainly though the defence is just poor.

I know everyone ought to give him more time, but look at the stark contrast between how both his first seasons (or atleast half of it) at Barca and at City have unfolded - with a few tweaks, he was able to get an underperforming side left behind by Rijkaard to be world beaters, while at City he has spent well over $150m and the squad is still not able to mount any serious challenge on any front.
+3
Gotta agree with that.
Good insights.
Very Good.
I disagree. I think Pep can turn it around. In fact, he already has. Sure we haven't been playing well for the past few months but it would be lie to say that what Pep did earlier in the season and his UCL performance against Barca aren't an indication of what City could look like in the near future. We never had that under Pellegrini or Mancini. Things fell apart due to the lack of quality players that can play in his system consistently and some major injuries to important players. All these I believe will be fixed overtime and with contracts running out in the summer, it would be perfect to wait and spend during the summer period. As of now, Pep is trying to implement his system in a team full of players that can't really replicate good performances in that system as a team. I really believe with a few more players, we can actually turn into a pretty formidable team under Pep.

+1
I agree that Pep needs to be given time, but I digress that Pep can fix all the solutions with transfers. Imo in his career, he has had better luck moulding players into the role he wants them to play, rather than bringing in expensive players.

Also, there is no guarantee that the signings will work out. It takes time and extensive scouting to figure out the kind of the kind of players that will work in the EPL, and if Pep manages to make great signings the coming summer window, kudos to him.

But City supporters from their own experiences must know that signing expensive players is no guarantee that they will come good - look at Mangala, Stones, Sane, Bravo, Otamendi, Bony, Negredo, Jovetic... these are players bought in the last 2/3 years alone who are major flops. I'm not including Sterling and Gundogan as they have been decent earlier this season. The only real successes in the market have been KdB and Fernandinho.
Scoreline prediction results from this weekend

1st place: drogbalampard with 2 correct (Lei vs Che & Hul vs Bou)
2nd place: Bazinga with 1 correct (Mun vs Liv)
3rd place: Everyone else
4th place: .......cue whichever arsenal joke you prefer here
+3
Arsenal should make an appearance in Star Wars with all that fourth they have!
+2
Nice lol
I plead the fourth 🙂 Edit- I plead the fifth 😆
Wenger be like:

I'm the one with the fourth. The fourth is with me.
I'm the one with the fourth. The fourth is with me.
I'm the one with the fourth. The fourth is with me.
I'm the one with the fourth. The fourth is with me.
I'm the one with the fourth. The fourth is with me.
+3
United can star in the Revenge in the Sixth too!!
+2
Ya'll just be thankful we haven't executed order 66 yet
Is Bravo the sh*test goalkeeper ever? or just in the PL?
+2
What next for Pep guys? Apparently he says we don't need to improve our defending or need any defensive players, so what next? Continue and hope for the best? That does not work in the PL. Edit - That was for our forum, but feel free to answer.
+2
I'm pretty sure he knows the defense needs to improve - in the public eye and in front of the media he is just trying to protect his players to keep the pressure off them.
+2
"I don't teach players how to tackle" "We dont need to improve our defending"

Comments like that shows how stubborn he is and does not want to adapt...Most top managers are like that.
+3
I agree Baz. I actually saw this coming despite our hasty start winning games and people getting carried away. If you go back some pages on this forum I believe I said teams will figure us out and Pep will struggle to finish even top 4 this season but my comments were not acknowledged lol, but it is coming to pass.

I do believe if we had all our players he would still struggle maybe not as much but his one way style will not cut it with our current players and especially in the PL. You just can't have 11 midfielders all the time.

I believe just like how players adapt to what suits a manager sometimes a manager need to see what players excels at and adapt to them, best of both worlds, everyone can't do everything at world class level, it's impossible.

Put Zabaleta in midfield and expect a Verrati or Matuidi performance just never gonna happen lol
He should have signed more squad players in the summer when he had the chance instead of playing aged defenders in midfield.
Playing a RB as a midfielder seems to be a pet peeve for him, for some reason. He made a complete full back Lahm into a midfielder and it worked but largely due to the fact that Lahm is technically very good and a very good defender. To think it would work with Zabaleta also is quite naive.
At the moment it's backfiring a lot and making him look clueless
The Bravo Hart situation is also strange, but I didn't think Bravo would be such a flop.
His handling of the media has been quite poor too.
+4
Why was it naive to think it could work with Zabaleta?
Guardiolas team defence was their ball possession and it worked for a while at Barca and Bayern.
+2
Well, It never worked at Bayern. The team played awful in most of the big games Pep managed. All those games vs Pep's former club Barca or Real were such disasters. He kept trying the same thing which was to pack the midfield, and try to tiki taka over Barcelona but failed at it miserably. Then went for it again in the return leg and got thrown out. Rinse and repeat.
With Bayern's squad winning the Bundesliga was never in doubt, but the Champions League performance was so awful. Holding a high line with slow defenders versus fast strikers, and getting ripped on the counter was a regular sight.. A far cry from the counter attacking Bayern that won the UCL just some time before he arrived.
Too stubborn to tweak his philosophy even in the in the slightest and way to naive when it comes to adapting with the payers he had at his disposal. Even with all the injuries Bayern, he played the same way with makeshift players out of position and it was just a joke towards the end.

City is proving to be the same so far, and with just an average squad his mistakes are magnified ten folds.
+4
Hmm fair enough, I mean I feel his use of Zabelata is more drawn out of necessity than naivety - missing the likes of Fernandinho and Gundogan among others.
+2


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Top Goalscorers

 
A. Sánchez
14
Diego Costa
14
Z. Ibrahimović
14
H. Kane
13
R. Lukaku
12
J. Defoe
12
S. Agüero
11
D. Alli
10
E. Hazard
9
S. Mané
9

Seeing Red

Fernandinho
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7 1
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6 1
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Premier League Table

Form
PTS
GD
GA
GF
L
D
W
Pl
Pos
52
30
15
45
3
1
17
21
1
45
29
14
43
2
6
13
21
2
45
25
24
49
2
6
13
21
3
44
26
22
48
3
5
13
21
4
42
15
26
41
5
3
13
21
5
40
12
20
32
3
7
11
21
6
33
9
23
32
6
6
9
21
7
29
0
28
28
8
5
8
21
8
27
-6
33
27
8
6
7
21
9
26
-8
31
23
11
2
8
21
10
25
-7
37
30
10
4
7
21
11
25
-9
35
26
10
4
7
21
12
24
-7
26
19
9
6
6
21
13
23
-13
36
23
10
5
6
21
14
21
-10
34
24
10
6
5
21
15
20
-5
22
17
9
8
4
21
16
16
-10
40
30
13
4
4
21
17
16
-25
45
20
13
4
4
21
18
15
-20
40
20
14
3
4
21
19
15
-26
49
23
14
3
4
21
20
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