Following on from the first part of the Premier League Preview, here are the next five teams. I imagine some controversial thoughts on who might finish where in the top 5, the next five could possibly balance that one out… I say possibly.
First up it’s Tottenham. The north London club finished fifth last season pipping Liverpool to the spot after their end of season fall away. This season I suspect it may well be Tottenham who drop to sixth, not by miles on the points but unless they make a few more super stunning signings, Im not sure that they will have enough to push them into the top four. Whilst they have had major clear out, they have only signed Alderweireld and Dele Alli who are of any note. They have of course been linked with various strikers and if they are to make a real push, they will certainly need to strengthen. Harry Kane might be the man of the moment, but there is only so much he can do up front.
For me its sixth place for the Lilywhites (Trips to Tottenham may not be happening very often – a number of my family may disown me for this prediction, but hey it’s only a game….
Now this is where it gets interesting. Southampton may have seen Clyne, Schneiderlin move on amongst others, but Saints manager Ronald Koeman has not hesitated to splash the cash and ensure he has a strong squad. To add to Bertrand from Chelsea, Caulker had moved from QPR, signed talented Dutch midfielder Jordie Clasie.
Having seen several big names depart the season before, many thought the Saints would struggle, but in fact they went one place better than the season before. The South coast club will be up there again and although I can’t see them finishing higher than seventh, I can see them securing that position once more.
Swansea City look certain to make it another top ten finish. Whilst they have not been too busy in the transfer market with multi big name signings, they did manage to acquire Andre Ayew on a free transfer. Playing as a winger or a second striker, the former Marseille man can give the Welsh club another strong attacking option. He had been linked with several Premier League clubs, but opted to move to Wales, for me its an eighth place finish.
Mark Hughes has certainly been busy in the transfer market and has made some interesting signings. Whilst the likes of Begovic, Huth, N’Zonzi and Palacios have left the Britannia stadium, the likes of Affelay from Barcelona, Van Ginkel on loan from Chelsea, Shay Given on a free along with Glen Johnson, could give Stoke great strength and continue to make themselves difficult to beat at their ground. With the experienced signings, I can see Stoke finishing ninth and becoming the launchpad to a future higher finish.
The Crystal Palace revolution continuing under Alan Pardew will see the South East London club pushing yet another top ten finish. Having notably upset the applecart several times over the last couple of seasons, the club is taking huge steps towards breaking into the top ten. The club has made several key signings including the return of Yohan Cabaye to the Premier League, Connor Wickham, top young keeper Alex McCarthy. If Palace can build some consistency and avoid injuries I see no reason why establishing another top ten position cannot happen.