I haven’t seen an EPL thread lately, so I thought I’d start one in hopes of attracting some discussion. Given that I am fortunate enough to own cable (Thanks, Fox Sports World), I have been able to see quite a bit of English Premier League football this season. In any event, here’s my views on the season so far.
Looks as if Chelsea is poised to take the Premier League title away from Arsenal. With roughly 12 games to go, Chelsea holds a 10 point lead over Arsenal. Barring some catastrophe, it looks like the battle will be over who gets into Europe for next season. Along with Chelsea, Arsenal and Man Utd look to be locks. Everton is holding firm in 4th place (and I really hope that they can hang on to their position in the standings).
The real battle shaping up is who will be relegated to the Championship. Southhampton, Crystal Palace, Norwich, and West Brom Albion are at the bottom of the table. I’d really like to see Norwich stay up (I was especially pleased that they came back from a 4-1 deficit with 10 minutes to go to tie Middlesbrough 4-4; that and they really have a scrappy, never-die attitude most of the time).
Looks as if Chelsea might have a shot at a quadruple (Premier, FA Cup, League Cup, and European Cup). Whether they will pull it off remains to be seen; but if they do, I think it will solidify themselves as the premier team in Europe (and will push Mourinho into legendary status as a football genius).
Impressive players (to me at least):
Arjen Robben - he’s been the catalyst of the Chelsea juggernaut once he was inserted into the line-up after his injury. Chelsea looked sluggish in the early part of the year without him - with him they’ve been almost invincible. I really like him and Duff on the wings - both can fly, both are left-footers, and both can set-up their strikers effectively.
Theirry Henri - leading goal scorer for Arsenal. Has been simply brilliant throughout most of the year.
Brian (?) Downing of Middlesbrough - impressive young winger; another pacey left-footer.
Ledley King - Tottenham defender. Giant in the backfield.
Thomas Gravesen (now with Real madrid) - the gritty and determined mid-field catalyst of Everton. Will definitely be missed.
Man Utd. versus Exeter. Nice FA Cup story (think New York Yankess versus A or Rookie league team). Exeter tied Man Utd. 0-0 in their initial match (at Old Trafford), setting the stage for the replay at Exeter. Exeter lost, 2-0, but the money generated from both matches helped them with their debt problems.
Djibril Cisse (Liverpool) injury - ugh! every time they show it, I have to close my eyes. For those who haven’t seen it - think Joe Thiesmann and how his leg was broken. Djibril Cisse’s was worse because it appeared the the inury was caused by the pitch. I watched the match and knew instantly what had happened. Glad to here that he’ll be playing again in the near future.