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Opinions on other clubs.


James
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Now the transfer window is coming to a close, and we've seen each team play two games, what are people's initial impressions on the other clubs?

 

Here are my impressions:

 

Arsenal: Nasri looks a good replacement for Hleb, but they haven't found a replacement for Flamini, and they could struggle in the centre of the park, especially when Fabregas is out. Can't see them improving this season, and there is too much reliance on Adebayor and Fabregas that has the potential to be a disaster. Of course, Wenger might be able to bring in a fantastic new kid, so you can never write off Arsenal.

 

Aston Villa: Just as good in attack, worse in defence. Will win plenty of games and score plenty of goals albeit with inconsistent results. Look to be better than Everton, but have they done enough to hold off other clubs?

 

Blackburn: When the chips are down, Blackburn will miss Bentley's ability to make something out of nothing. Otherwise, they've got a reasonable squad and so far look able to churn out reasonable results. As long as Ince doesn't turn out to be dreadful, they'll have another comfortably mediocre season.

 

Bolton: Elmander could fill half of the gap left by Anelka. Signs would suggest the same old anti-football Bolton who will grind out results and finish between 12th and 16th.

 

Chelsea: Look very good, and have the best strength in depth. Will have an outstanding season, as much as I hope they don't.

 

Everton: Lost their best player (Fernandes), lost Johnson, and lost Carsley. Have failed to make any inroads in the transfer market. Likely to have fallen behind other clubs right now. A couple of injuries could be catastrophic.

 

Fulham: Team has had a nice upgrade, and Hodgson seems to have a good eye for a good player. Won't pull up trees, but I fancy a return of their good home record, and that will keep them safe.

 

Hull: Seem to have a good attitude compared to other promoted clubs. I fancy some of their players to become as revered as some of the Wigan players. Might just stay up, especially if they can keep Geovanni motivated.

 

Liverpool: Looking good, and seem to have made some nice tweaks to their squad. Keane should prove to be a very good purchase. If they don't finish closer to the top of the table, Benitez should be shown the door.

 

Man City: Can't say I was convinced by Jo at the Olympics, and did they really need two new center backs? They've got a good squad, but boardroom uncertainty breeds inconsistency.

 

Man Utd: Showing right now that they struggle to score without Ronaldo. Giggs and Scholes are fading forces, but so far there are no adequate replacements. Their defence is more important than ever, with Vidic and Ferdinand now the two most vital players after Ronaldo. They need Berbatov, but will they get him? If they don't they'll be fighting with Liverpool, not Chelsea.

 

Middlesbrough: Look alright at the moment, but how long will Mido's form last? Another safe but inconsistent team.

 

Portsmouth: Nightmare opening fixtures makes the Portsmouth team hard to judge. Crouch-Defoe makes an interesting combination, but Muntari is a huge loss. Last season's peak will be difficult to maintain, I'd expect a slightly worse season.

 

Stoke: Not the joke the bookies made out about after Bolton, but I still think they'll go down albeit after a scrap and a couple months of early optimism.

 

Sunderland: New signings will keep them safe, and help them get the occasional big result, but I think the top half is a glass ceiling for the Mackems that will take Keane a couple years of stability to break.

 

Tottenham: Set for another disappointment if they don't sign at least one good striker and solidify their midfield (even if it is just replacing Jenas with Huddlestone). Very much a case of wait and see.

 

West Brom: Look poor. This is the same old West Brom team that alternates between promotion certainties and relegation certainties.

 

West Ham: Do not underestimate the importance of Ljungberg and Solano to West Ham's points haul last season. Continued injury problems, and a squad littered with average players breeds averageness, and eventually starts going backwards.

 

Wigan: No better or worse last season. Form will depend on keeping their small squad fit. I reckon they'll start OK, but fade badly, possibly after selling Palacios.

 

 

Predicted League Table:

 

1. Chelsea

2. Man Utd

3. Liverpool

4. Arsenal

5. Newcastle

6. Aston Villa

7. Portsmouth

8. Blackburn

9. Manchester City

10. Tottenham

11. Middlesbrough

12. Everton

13. Sunderland

14. West Ham

15. Fulham

16. Bolton

17. Hull

18. Wigan

19. West Brom

20. Stoke

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I don't think Wigan will go down. They comfortably outplayed Chelsea and Bruce has done a good job there.

 

Also, however funny it is (and believe me I'm loving it), Spurs won't finish as low as 10th.

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You seriously think we'll finish 5th.

 

I think 7th at an absolute maximum.

 

It is between us and Villa in my opinion (unless something happens in the transfer market)

 

You post should say IF something happens in the transfer market, if we sign some proper cover and 1 - 2 quality players in vital positions it could happen if everything fell into place. If not it should say something about this on Newcastle "Looks improved from last season, new signings look promising. Will struggle if or when injuries strike especially in defence and attack."

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Aston Villa: Just as good in attack, worse in defence. Will win plenty of games and score plenty of goals albeit with inconsistent results. Look to be better than Everton, but have they done enough to hold off other clubs?

 

 

How are they worse in defence, yes Mellberg left but they have brought in Cueller, Young and Shory as well as bringing in a better keeper in Friedel...

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Way too soon to make some of these assessments - I think WBA will do OK when they settle down, have played Arsenal away and Everton at home and only lost by 1 goal ; remember when NUFC got into the Prem in 1993 ? We lost our first 2 matches(Spurs at SJP, Coventry away by 0-1 & 2-1 respectively), yet finished 3rd...

Mowbray has made some shrewd signings, including Valero from Real Mallorca who, reputedly, NUFC also wanted and the team will improve as it settles down to the prem.

 

I think you are way out by predicting a 5th place finish for NUFC, esp if we fail to make any more decent signings - the first team is OK when at full strength, but injuries will decimate the season. I expect no better than 9th/10th - maybe 8th if we strengthen.

 

Man U will again be challengers - last season, Arsenal looked the best side early on but faded away ; this might happen with Chelsea, but I think they will still challenge well into the season.

Expect a surprise season from Boro, and a top 6 finish for Villa...

Hull to slip away after a bright start, Stoke likewise....

Mackems MAY just pip us unless we have strengthened by end of August...

 

Its a long season - lots will happen but the top 4 will remain the same.

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Aston Villa: Just as good in attack, worse in defence. Will win plenty of games and score plenty of goals albeit with inconsistent results. Look to be better than Everton, but have they done enough to hold off other clubs?

 

 

How are they worse in defence, yes Mellberg left but they have brought in Cueller, Young and Shory as well as bringing in a better keeper in Friedel...

 

In my opinion, Young and Shorey are worse defenders than what they had before.

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Aston Villa: Just as good in attack, worse in defence. Will win plenty of games and score plenty of goals albeit with inconsistent results. Look to be better than Everton, but have they done enough to hold off other clubs?

 

 

How are they worse in defence, yes Mellberg left but they have brought in Cueller, Young and Shory as well as bringing in a better keeper in Friedel...

 

In my opinion, Young and Shorey are worse defenders than what they had before.

Agreed, Mellberg and Bouma(Serious Injury) are better than Shorey and Young,  Cuellar may not adapt to the league a la Boumsong.

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Guest optimistic nit

i think its a dead heat atm between every club from 5th to about 13th/14th as to who finishes where. boro and sunlan could even put a bit of a fight up. its not inconcievable for everton to finish 5th imo (or us), we all have our weaknesses and stregnths.

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Man City: Can't say I was convinced by Jo at the Olympics, and did they really need two new center backs? They've got a good squad, but boardroom uncertainty breeds inconsistency.

 

 

Hughes said he bought Kompany to play as a defensive midfielder.... only as defender in emergency

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Now the transfer window is coming to a close, and we've seen each team play two games, what are people's initial impressions on the other clubs?

 

Here are my impressions:

 

Arsenal: Nasri looks a good replacement for Hleb, but they haven't found a replacement for Flamini, and they could struggle in the centre of the park, especially when Fabregas is out. Can't see them improving this season, and there is too much reliance on Adebayor and Fabregas that has the potential to be a disaster. Of course, Wenger might be able to bring in a fantastic new kid, so you can never write off Arsenal.

 

Thinking along the same lines, desperately need a Barry or Alonso just to have a similar squad of last year. The team is a year older, and unlike most clubs this is a big deal to Arsenal with so many young players about. Same kind of season as last, possibly better if they bring in an Alonso or Barry type player

 

Aston Villa: Just as good in attack, worse in defence. Will win plenty of games and score plenty of goals albeit with inconsistent results. Look to be better than Everton, but have they done enough to hold off other clubs?

 

I believe Villa will be the team for the 2nd teir to beat. Improved slightly, but consistancy in their squad, selection and management is what is making Villa tick, and its another season of that, we league posaition improvements for me

 

Blackburn: When the chips are down, Blackburn will miss Bentley's ability to make something out of nothing. Otherwise, they've got a reasonable squad and so far look able to churn out reasonable results. As long as Ince doesn't turn out to be dreadful, they'll have another comfortably mediocre season.

 

Think they'll take a step backwards, even if Ince runs with his luck, its going to fall apart for big spells throughout the season

 

Bolton: Elmander could fill half of the gap left by Anelka. Signs would suggest the same old anti-football Bolton who will grind out results and finish between 12th and 16th.

 

Anelka was more important to Bolton than you give him credit for, Elmander won't be able to live it up, and to lose Diouf as well means they are looking pretty toothless against top opposition

 

Chelsea: Look very good, and have the best strength in depth. Will have an outstanding season, as much as I hope they don't.

 

Looking good, much more of an attacking threat than their previous managers could muster, well so far, but with a Robinho transfer just around the corner, that trend doesn't seem like its going to fade, i reckon they are the team to beat this season

 

Everton: Lost their best player (Fernandes), lost Johnson, and lost Carsley. Have failed to make any inroads in the transfer market. Likely to have fallen behind other clubs right now. A couple of injuries could be catastrophic.

 

All is not well, Everton really looking like a club in crisis. Players not replaced, beaten to almost every signing in the transfer market, stadium fiasco ongoing, Moyes unhappy and contract running out. Twitchy bum time for Everton fans, wont take a massive step back, but can't see them going forward or even maintaining their position

 

Fulham: Team has had a nice upgrade, and Hodgson seems to have a good eye for a good player. Won't pull up trees, but I fancy a return of their good home record, and that will keep them safe.

 

Going through some pretty major changes since Hodgson has come in, some decent, a lot poor. Think his inconsistancy in the transfer market will be their letdown, and putting all his eggs in one Andy injured Johnson basket will be his downfall. Can see them surviving, but doing nothing of note. Typical Fulham season.

 

Hull: Seem to have a good attitude compared to other promoted clubs. I fancy some of their players to become as revered as some of the Wigan players. Might just stay up, especially if they can keep Geovanni motivated.

 

No fear football, promising start but as soon as a big beating is handed to them, i can see them falling faster than Gary Glitter's trousers in a creche.

 

Liverpool: Looking good, and seem to have made some nice tweaks to their squad. Keane should prove to be a very good purchase. If they don't finish closer to the top of the table, Benitez should be shown the door.

 

Another typical Liverpool season ahead. Looks a good cup team, but can they transform all those draws in to wins? Is Keane the type of player to spark Torres? I'm not sure, so will sit on the fence and go for the usual Liverpool season, enough positives to keep Rafa there another year.

 

Man City: Can't say I was convinced by Jo at the Olympics, and did they really need two new center backs? They've got a good squad, but boardroom uncertainty breeds inconsistency.

 

Making our club look like Arsenal, something straight from the writers of Dream Team, and for that they will suffer. Fans are anxious, a few bad results and fans will turn on the club, and the press will take advantage. Citeh fans really could be in for a season of glory, or a massive season of failure, should be fun for a neutral.

 

Man Utd: Showing right now that they struggle to score without Ronaldo. Giggs and Scholes are fading forces, but so far there are no adequate replacements. Their defence is more important than ever, with Vidic and Ferdinand now the two most vital players after Ronaldo. They need Berbatov, but will they get him? If they don't they'll be fighting with Liverpool, not Chelsea.

 

Poor start but never under estimate Manu. If they can limp to 1/4 mark with what they've got, they'll be in contention by the end of the season. A berbatov move would spark their attack no doubt.

 

Middlesbrough: Look alright at the moment, but how long will Mido's form last? Another safe but inconsistent team.

 

Good start, can't see it lasting.

 

Portsmouth: Nightmare opening fixtures makes the Portsmouth team hard to judge. Crouch-Defoe makes an interesting combination, but Muntari is a huge loss. Last season's peak will be difficult to maintain, I'd expect a slightly worse season.

 

Think they'll have another good season, will be pushing Villa for 5th

 

Stoke: Not the joke the bookies made out about after Bolton, but I still think they'll go down albeit after a scrap and a couple months of early optimism.

 

Can't see them surviving, straight back down

 

Sunderland: New signings will keep them safe, and help them get the occasional big result, but I think the top half is a glass ceiling for the Mackems that will take Keane a couple years of stability to break.

 

Keane has brought in some decent players, for some crazy prices, if they struggle and these mercinaries bottle it, its going to be a slippery slope to the Championship and to bankrupcy, however, i think there is clearly enough quality to stay away form that and to possible have a say at the middle of the table come the end of the season.

 

Tottenham: Set for another disappointment if they don't sign at least one good striker and solidify their midfield (even if it is just replacing Jenas with Huddlestone). Very much a case of wait and see.

 

Poor start, but are suffering from new players needing to settle, and old players needing to leave. Top 7 should be where they finish, and probably will be the time they settle in.

 

West Brom: Look poor. This is the same old West Brom team that alternates between promotion certainties and relegation certainties.

 

Can't see the self named 'Arsenal of the Championship' doing much from playing some decent football and going back down

 

West Ham: Do not underestimate the importance of Ljungberg and Solano to West Ham's points haul last season. Continued injury problems, and a squad littered with average players breeds averageness, and eventually starts going backwards.

 

Totally fooked. Curbs will be the 1st manager to be sacked, unhappy players, fans, manager, board, its all gone tits up, should have went down two seasons ago, now their time could possibly come. It will be a struggle.

 

Wigan: No better or worse last season. Form will depend on keeping their small squad fit. I reckon they'll start OK, but fade badly, possibly after selling Palacios.

 

I think their season will pan out about the same, possibly playing better football and giving the fans more hope. A slight improvement is on the cards.

 

My opinions in red italic

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Arsenal: need to replace Flamini and Gilberto with some experienced players, stop playing Eboue. As with last season they've a good starting XI but lack strength and depth

 

Aston Villa: Improved well on last season. If they keep Barry/replace with some1 similar they have quality throughout their team. A good run in Europe could hamper them though as their squad isn't the biggest although is a lot stronger than last season.

 

Blackburn: Done well to sign up Santa Cruz, will miss Bentley especially giving as they haven't replaced him as such yet. Lower than last season.

 

Bolton: Hard graft will only get you so far and Bolton have no creative players in the slightest to change a game. Had two attacking full backs playing on the wings versus us says it all really. Depending on how well the new teams do could be drawn into another struggle.

 

Chelsea: Stronger than last season apart from upfront, will battle for the title. Have that knack of winning when playing shit n all.

 

Everton: Need to strengthen badly, their transfer policy so far has been comical. Still got a very strong starting XI.

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Fulham: Will be better than last season, have a lot of players that will create chances. Away form will be their killer heel once more. Expect to float outside the relegation zone

 

Hull: Strengthened sensibly but still lack a proven goalscorer at this level. At least they're making a fist of it though thus far. Relegated.

 

Liverpool: New signings, Keane aside, are no better than what they have. Rafa needs to pick a formation and stick with it. Still need a top drawer winger too to take the creative emphasis off Gerrard.

 

Man City: Strengthened well and look very solid once more. If Jo fires & Elano plays for a full season they could be in for a good season.

 

Man Utd: Still the best team going forward in the league but they are missing Ronaldo. Probably need another striker too but everyone said that last season. Will be between them and Chelsea for the title

 

Middlesbrough: Solid but average, same old Boro.

 

Portsmouth: Will James be as good as last season, probably not which will probably hamper them. Defoe and Crouch have the makings of a decent partnership but Krancjar aside their midfield is poor and they sold their best one, Muntari. Top 10.

 

Stoke: As with Hull.

 

Sunderland: New Boro with more volatile players. Keane has bought well to be fair to him.

 

Tottenham: Bought good players in positions where they didn't necessarily need strengthening (keeper aside). Need to buy a CB,DM, new Berbatov to reach expectations at least. Will be equally as entertaining for the neutral as they were last season it lookslike.

 

West Brom: Going down, defence was poor last season and doesn't seem much better this. Poorer mans Fulham they appear to be in the way they play.

 

West Ham: Could struggle badly if they continue to sell and rely on injured on players however if they do get Dyer, Bellamy, Ashton playing as they can do regualrly will be midtable comfortably.

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Wigan: Same as the end of last season. Well organised and enough quality to stay stafe.

 

 

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Arsenal: As others have said, Need a Flamini replacement, Dream world Yaya Toure, Arsene Knows. Need a winger, when i look at RW options, Eboue/Walcott for the right, Rosicky/Nasri left. Would like another RW'er. Eboue=Gash, get rid! But Arsene thinks he provides "balance" wtf! But ARSENE KNOWS!

 

Aston Villa: Quality first team, better than 'pool imo. Need a bit more depth and they will become a top 4 side!

 

Blackburn: Weakend a little from last season, they will miss Bentley and they will miss Mark hughes. Finish lower than last season.

 

Bolton: Going to be very inconsistent imo, got the players to work hard got a manager who will work hard, but they are never going to get to the level they did with SHit Sam again under Megson.

 

Chelsea: Bastards. Shouldnt have sacked Avram Grant. Stronger than last season, i arent getting caught in this hype, but when drogba is back i think they have a quality side and will win the league.

 

Everton: Strong squad, lost there place as fifth best club in my eyes to Villa. Need a few new players to make a dash for top four again!

 

Fulham: They're just a bit of a Meh club arent they! Not exciting, boring manager, wont get relegated, will be a couple of places above, yes im bitter.

 

Hull: Brought a few good players i think Geovanni could be a very good player for them, relegated. OH and i hate clubs with Orange and Black kits!

 

Liverpool: Need players, a quality quality winger, they also need full backs, that lad i saw at the weekend didnt look up to much. Rafa is a crap manager aswell. Can see them slipping away to Villa!

 

Man City: Quality players, Jo will do well i think. Elano again will be quality, but will Thaksin have too higher hopes and just sack someone again? Sven shouldnt have been sacked!

 

Man Utd: Quality side, Rooney is overrated, they do need a striker, swap Rooney for Berbatov imo! Tevez and Berba up top is just, well,  :fwap: wouldnt stop scoring! Maybe need a right back aswell? But will finish second!

 

Middlesbrough: I think they will be a surprise package, finish quite high imo!

 

Portsmouth: Midfield is a bit crap. Heavy reliance on James, they're an aging team, finish lower than last season, Crouch and Defoe will score alot i think.

 

Stoke: They'll survive i think, they have some quality players. Ab. Faye, Fuller, Lawrence, Am. Faye.

 

Sunderland: How much money have they got? Buying alot, spending alot, wish they'd just go down, i dont like them/keane. Will finish in a good position though.

 

Tottenham: Buying in the wrong places, sold good players, what the hell? Will finish a little over 10th place think. St Totteringhams day will be early this year!

 

West Brom: Most certain team to go down imo, they cant Be West Brazil playing against premier league sides, it wont work. Good on them for trying though. Oh, and Tony Bowbray, how annoying.

 

West Ham: They will be getting relegated at this rate. Why arent they buying and being stingey if they have one of the dearest season tickets in the league and are always selling out? Pathetic club.

 

Wigan: Quality side, Quality manager, tactically brilliant, i think they'll grow and grow and grow. 4/5 years time? i think they could become a top6 side!

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