“At it’s best, life is completely unpredictable” – Christopher Walken
We as humans revel in the unknown – it’s part of what makes life interesting. And nowhere is the joy of unpredictability more obvious than in the world of football.
However, this season is producing a rather predictable outcome in Premier League terms. Stamford Bridge appears to be the only destination for the trophy and it seems there’s nothing we can do about it.
Chelsea’s current closest competitor is Southampton. However good the Saints are currently performing , no one expects them still to be in contention come May. If they really pushed Chelsea to the end with a genuine title challenge it would be on of the most impressive over-achieving performances in the history of the Premier League.
Beyond Southampton, others have offered more reasons to rule themselves out of the title than to justify inclusion in the conversation. Manchester United have certainly taken their name out of the hat for this year at least. Arsenal are forever aiming for fourth, and after an impressive season last year, Liverpool can’t handle the extra games that the Champions League inclusion creates. The only other genuine title contenders, Manchester City, have so far struggled to get going.
There’s no doubting that City have the squad depth and quality to handle a Premier League title challenge.
Unlike Chelsea, Manchester City look likely to drop out in the group stage of the Champions League, allowing them to switch their entire concentration to the Premier League and FA cup. European competitions often prove detrimental to league form and the Champions would certainly expect to benefit from having fewer games than their rivals from West London.
Most considered the title race to only be between Chelsea and Man City, and so far that is proving to be the case – albeit with the temporary inclusion of Southampton.
As aforementioned, this season is unlike many before it was largely predicted to be a direct race between Chelsea and Manchester City, and is transpiring to be the case. Unless you’ve stuck a few quid on the outcome, it is actually rather disappointing to be able to predict accurately in football.
Chelsea are almost in a position where they already feel champions elect. That’s very strange for the Premier League, especially as last season the lead changed hands 25 times.
Chelsea are top – holding this spot since the third match day – and don’t look like giving up their position anytime soon. Last season went right to wire in a three-way title race – with two teams (Chelsea & Liverpool) finishing within 4 points of the eventual Premier League champions Manchester City.
It went down to the final day and that is increasingly unlikely to be the case this season. Chelsea may well go through this entire season unbeaten, and that is a feat only done once before in the history of the Premier League.
You wouldn’t write them off being able to do that, and if they do they will undoubtably finish league champions. It may be disappointing that they’re so predictably dominant, but we can still watch in awe and admire them this season.