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Premier League special

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England is ‘blue’, but Europe hasn’t been conquered. The record season still resonates in Manchester. In addition to the Premier League and League Cup titles, the ‘citizens’ achieved the most points (100), the highest number of wins (32), the most triumphs at home (16), consecutive victories ( 18), top scorer (106), biggest goal difference (+79) and widest distance to second place (19 points).

Pep Guardiola and his team are challenged to repeat an outstanding league championship. For this, the arrival of Mahrez and the recovery of Mendy are the reinforcements for a season where all eyes will be on their performance in the Champions League. Last year they couldn’t get past the quarterfinals. It will be the third season of the Catalan coach at City, although he has a contract until 2021.

Objective: Champions of the Premier League.

It’s Mourinho’s turn to win again. It’s up to Manchester United to get back on track. Although there were three titles in the first year of Mourinho at Old Trafford, the past year they were too far from the title and didn’t respond in the other competitions. In addition, the Portuguese coach has complained about a lack of new signings and has warned fans that “it will be a difficult season.”

Fred, Dalot and Grant are the three signings, Pogba stays in spite of the rumours, Lukaku is entrusted to score goals and they pray that Alexis, after his winter signing, gets to the level expected of him.

Objective: Champions of the Premier League.

Tottenham are looking to continue to win without a transfer. Not a single signing has been made by Tottenham all summer. And no one has left either. The squad is identical for Pochettino, who will try to secure a place in the top four. In the last three seasons, Spurs have two 3rd place finishes and one 2nd place. With Harry Kane as a world-class goalscorer (four seasons over 27 goals and the last reaching 41), the rest of the weight will fall on the numbers made by Dele Alli, Eriksen or Son. The main request from the fans are titles.

This year they will stop playing at Wembley to return to a shiny new White Hart Lane.

Objective: Champions League qaulification.

Klopp has a squad ready for everything. Two questions at Anfield. The first: Will Salah return to repeat his great season? After 44 goals in 52 games, the bar that the Egyptian set is very high. At 26, he’s one of the main stars of the Premier League.

The second issue lies in the signings: Does Klopp have everything he needs to fight the league? The arrivals of Alisson, Fabinho and Naby Keita, as well as Shaqiri’s reinforcement for the attacking trident , suggest that the ‘reds’ will be much stronger than a few months ago. An elite goalkeeper and two midfielders with a margin of improvement to complete a squad that will continue to leave the responsibility to Salah, Firmino and Mane.

Objective: Champions of the Premier League

Sarri has a new Chelsea. The frantic last days of the market have finished shaping the team. After a year at Napoli that put him on everyone’s lips thanks to his attractive football – Guardiola said that they were one of the three teams in Europe that played best -, the ‘blues’ decided a drastic change of style was needed and said goodbye to Conte. Sarri has brought Jorginho, who will be an indisputable starter with Kante, while the continuity of Hazard has been celebrated by all.

He will change the pattern of recent years (goodbye to 3-5-2 and hello to 4-3-3) and there will be a new tenant in the goal: Kepa Arrizabalaga, the most expensive goalkeeper in history. After not qualifying for the Champions League and with Kovacic’s transfer, they have to win the title.

Objective: Champions of the Premier League

Year 1 without Wenger: the Emery era begins. Unai Emery’s reign will be evaluated with a magnifying glass. After 22 years, the Arsenal coach will not be Arsene Wenger, a fact that brings pressure but also provokes the sensation of novelty that the spectator is very grateful for before every start of the campaign. In addition to the reinforcements of Lucas Torreira, Sokratis or Leno, will be the opportunity to see a full season of Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang.

Regaining a position in the top four seems like the priority after two years without playing in the top European competition.

Objective: Champions League qualification.

Dyche’s manual of miracles. Burnley’s miracle ended with a European ranking thanks to their 7th position in the Premier League. Sean Dyche’s men, with their style of play so direct and basic, maintained the level and at the moment they are disputing the qualifying phase of the Europa League. During a stretch of the last campaign, they had only 19 points scoring 10 goals, but finished with a total of 54 points despite scoring just 36 goals. Mid-table will be a joy for a club that has been at the highest level for two years.

The signing of Joe Hart will lead to the departure of Pope or Heaton. Who could’ve imagined that Burnley would have three of the last international goalkeepers with England in their squad?

Objective: Mid-table

After his frustrated signing for Everton midway through last season, Marco Silva arrived at Goodison Park in the summer with the responsibility of demonstrating what was sensed during his stages at Hull City and Watford. The Portuguese replaced Allardyce and promised changes. For now, Rooney, Ashley Williams, Mirallas and Klaasen have already left the club, and an impressive 50 million euro investment has been made for Richarlison, who Silva coached at Watford.

In addition, the arrival of Digne will give Baines more rest. The goals will be Tosun’s responsibility. Andre Gomes, Yerry Mina and Bernard, signed on deadline day, all add quality to the Toffee’s squad.

Objective: Mid-table.

Schmeichel stays and Vardy continues to guarantee goals, however, Mahrez packed his bags to embark on the Manchester City project. His replacement in the playmaker role is the promising James Maddison, for which the Leicester have paid about 25 million euros even though he played in Championship with Norwich.

After the departure of Ranieri and the continuity with Shakespeare, the presence of Claude Puel on the bench gives a more long-term vision to the ‘Foxes.’. With the market about to expire, they tied down two defenders; Benkovic (Dinamo Zagreb) and Soyunku (Freiburg).

Objective: Mid-table.

The most complicated summer for Rafa Benitez. With the owner Mike Ashley willing to sell the club, the Spanish coach has not had the financial resources to reinforce his staff despite his requests at a press conference. In addition, the staff also went on “strike” and refused to participate in the team’s advertising events until the season’s premiums were agreed.

The arrival of Rondon in exchange for the loan of Gayle, will bring goals in attack, while Kenedy returns to Chelsea and Dubravka hopes to continue consolidating as a revelation in goal. After his good performances since Christmas, Newcastle decided to enforce his purchase clause from Sparta Prague.

Objective: Avoid relegation.

All roads point to Zaha. The continuity of Wilfried Zaha is the best news for Crystal Palace this summer. He’s one of the best footballers in the Premier League outside the big teams and he was valued at more than 50 million euros. With only three goals during the past championship, Benteke will remain the main striker but must contribute.

In four of the last five campaigns, Crystal Palace have reached Christmas in the bottom four. Without too many new faces on the team, Roy Hodgson will try to ensure that his team does not suffer the same fate.

Objective: Mid-table.

Eddie Howe’s side stand firm in the top flight. Two years in a row staying in the Premier League not only without suffering, but making history in the club. In 2017 they occupied ninth position and last year finished 12th. Howe knows how to get the most out of his team and has made several good transfers. Above all, the record of transfer of the club: Jefferson Lerma for 25 million euros. In addition, Diego Rico strengthens the defence and David Brooks, from Sheffield United, has already demonstrated his skills in the Championship and for the Welsh national team.

Objective: Mid-table.

Pellegrini returns to the Premier League stomping. West Ham (104.4m) is the second team to have spent the most in the window after Liverpool. The Chilean coach has returned to England, where he has already coached Manchester City, and is looking to take West Ham back to the promised land.

The free arrival of Jack Wilshere, from Arsenal can be added to names like Felipe Anderson (38m), Issa Diop (25m) and Yarmolenko (20m). On the last day, Lucas Perez and ‘La Roca’ Sanchez arrived. In addition, to compete with Adrian San Miguel in the goal, Fabianski cost eight million.

Objective: Mid-table to top half.

Javi Gracia, who arrived in January, has the challenge of keeping Watford in the Premier League but will need more goalscoring efficiency from his strikers. Between Deeney and Gray, they barely reached 10 goals last year.

The definitive arrival of Deulofeu is a new opportunity for the Catalan to shine in England.

Objective: Mid-table.

How will Brighton do in the top flight for the second consecutive season? Despite having been the worst home team in 2017/18 (fewest goals with 10, fewest games won with two and fewest points added with 11), Chris Hughton’s players compete again at the highest level. Especially, thanks to the performance offered by Pascal Gross, who participated with goals or assists in 44 percent of the seagulls’ output.

To increase their scoring production, Brighton have taken the services of Jahanbakhsh, who with 21 goals became the top scorer of the Eredivisie. Spanish captain Bruno Saltor (38), thanks to his performance and loyalty, signed a one-year contract extension, and in order to compete with him, Martin Montoya arrives.

Objective: Avoid relegation.

Huddersfield broke a curious record last season. With only 28 goals in favour, the ‘terriers’ were the least scoring team to remain safe in the Premier League. David Wagner already achieved a miracle by getting the team up in 2017 (they had been 19th in the Championship the previous year), and their debut in the Premier League saw them finish 16th.

The arrival of Kongolo will help in defence. Although the main star will still be Aaron Mooy, if Billing plays regularly, he will be a player who will stay in the Premier League even if his team don’t stay up.

Objective: Avoid relegation.

Southampton have been a Premier League team for more than five years. But, if in the first years the sensation was of growth, little by little they’re beginning to leave a bad taste in the mouth. Pellegrino was replaced by Mark Hughes, and the goal was to at least not suffer in the league.

The two main signings of the team are Elyounoussi from Basel and Armstrong from Celtic. Gone are the years in which each year a new young man from the academy emerged. Oxlade-Chamberlain, Bale, Lallana, Shaw and Chambers are long gone. Since Ward-Prowse, few have joined the first team definitively.

Objective: Mid-table.

Wolverhampton have risen and want to stay up. Champions of the Championship by nine points, Nuno Espirito Santo’s have mounted a project that aspires to reach Europe. In the hands of Jorge Mendes, whose contacts have been reinforcing the staff, Wolves have beaten their transfer record four times in a year. The last was Adama Traore, for 20 million euros. But he is not the only one. Ruben Neves arrived for 17m and Helder Costa for 15m. Add Raul Jimenez, Rui Patricio, Jonny Castro, Jota, Moutinho and Dendoncker, formerly of Anderlecht, and one can understand how difficult Wolves will be to beat.

They were relegated from the Premier League in 2012, and even had a season in League One (2013/14), but their economic potential is already able to attract the best players.

Objective: Mid-table to top half.

One of the main favourites to be relegated. The doubt is evident: Does Cardiff have enough to stay up? Neil Warnock’s team have invested nearly 30 million euros on signings, including Bobby Reid (former Bristol City, 19 goals last year), Josh Murphy (former Norwich) and Victor Camarasa (former Betis).

With the core of the squad from the Championship, the bookmakers place them at the bottom of the table. After four years in the Championship (they were relegated in 2013/14), it remains to be seen if the lack of experience at the highest level condemns a Cardiff that is still owned by Vincent Tan. The negative opinion of him has been softening with the passage of time.

Objective: Avoid relegation.

Fulham’s style of play marked a trend in Championship. Jokanovic’s team opted for the ball and a combinative game and the results ended up seeing them promoted. They’ve spent more than 100 million euros on signings where the name of Seri stands out. In addition, they have managed to sign Mitrovic in exchange for 20m. The Serbian striker was a fundamental part of the ‘cottagers’ ascent since his arrival on loan last January (12 goals in 17 matches).

Schurrle, who knows English football at Chelsea, and Mawson, who excelled at Swansea, have also arrived. Sergio Rico (will compete with Fabri), Anguissa, Bryan and Vietto all arrived on deadline day. It will also be a season to measure the impact of the very young Ryan Sessegnon, barely 18 years old, and who was able to score 16 goals during the promotion season playing as a left winger.

Objective: Avoid relegation to mid-table security.

Credit: Marca

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