Saturday, December 28, 2013

Pennant Fever

In most of Europe, Christmastime is not great for sports fans, because most European soccer leagues are on winter break.  But in Britain, the action is hot and heavy.  It's a boon for the English Premier League, because soccer fans all over the world don't have too many other options.  And this year, it's a boon for soccer fans, because the EPL is having one of its closest races in history.  With Sir Alex Ferguson in retirement, Manchester United no longer has its usual dominant position, and English football is suddenly up for grabs.  After a full slate of games on Boxing Day, the top of the EPL looks like this:

1.  Arsenal:  12-3-3 (39 points)
2.  Manchester City:  12-4-2 (38)
3.  Chelsea:  11-3-4 (37)
4.  Liverpool:  11-4-3 (36)
5.  Everton:  9-2-7 (34)
6.  Newcastle Utd:  10-5-3 (33)
7.  Manchester Utd:  9-5-4 (31) (goal differential of 9)
8.  Tottenham Hotspur:  9-5-4 (31) (goal differential of minus 5)

I would watch out for City; they have the best goal differential of any team in England (32), and they have recently scored big home wins over Arsenal (6-3) and Liverpool (2-1).  I would also keep an eye on Chelsea; Jose Mourinho is a great manager, and the Blues have gone 4-1-1 in their last six matches.  The EPL has games scheduled this weekend and on New Year's Day; so the table could change quite a bit over the next few days.

1 comment:

  1. Is there any talk of Sir Alex Ferguson coming out of retirement?