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Supercoach's Super Preview: Part 2

by The Supercoach on Aug 14, 2011

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The Supercoach continues his EPL predictions. Check out his tips for the title and top four here.

Europa League

As much as it pains me to write, I genuinely believe that Arsenal will miss out on the top four this year. Heck, they may even get knocked out by Udinese in the qualifiers for this year’s Champions League!

At the time of writing, they hadn’t addressed the issues at centre back, but had instead signed two youngsters from League 1 (a right back and a winger) and a winger from Ligue 1. Additionally, even if (and it’s a big if) Samir Nasri and Cesc Fabregas stay, then will their hearts be in it? I doubt it.

Fitness is a major concern for the increasingly important Robin van Persie, while Marouane Chamakh seems to have gone backwards and is only a threat with his head.

Wenger missed a trick by not making his signings early and for that reason, he may miss out on his targets altogether. The fact that rumours suggest Phil Jagielka doesn’t want to move to Arsenal speaks volumes.

Fans recently booed Arsenal at a pre-season friendly, and I think that this will be the year that Arsenal slips out of the top four due to poor transfer dealings and defensive lapses.

Relegation

The usual suspects will be pulled into their yearly relegation battle, but Fulham, West Brom, Wolves and Newcastle will all survive. Aston Villa will briefly feature in the race to the bottom, but I’m sure that they’ll be fine. Others clubs however, will not be.

I like Roberto Martinez, I really do. He tries to play proper football and was somehow able to keep Wigan up last year. For me, football was the winner as Birmingham went down. That said, it looks as though this may finally be the year that they go down. It will be tight, but I think that they’ll finish in 18th, despite the admirable efforts of players like Maynor Figueroa.

Hopefully a Premier League club signs up Martinez, because what he has achieved at Wigan, a rugby town with little to no finances, has been close to miraculous.

While they conceded the least amount of goals last year in the Championship, normally a sign that a club will stay up, I simply can’t ignore the internal issues at QPR. While I think their signings have been okay, they just haven’t done enough in the market and as such will go straight back down. I think they’ll finish 19th.

Finally, I think that Norwich will struggle massively this year. Yes they scored the most goals last year in the Championship, but they conceded a lot and will now be up against much better defensive units and attacking players. My guess is that they’ll resort to long ball by about October, but they’ll still finish 20th.