July 20, 2024

Will The EPL Prove To Be Competitive This Season?

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The current defending champions City have won the league title six times in the past 10 years.

FILE PHOTO: Manchester City's Kalvin Phillips and Erling Braut Haaland celebrate with their medals after winning the UEFA Super Cup. PICTURE: REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov

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LONDON: The Citizens’ rise coincides with the EPL’s competitiveness dwindling.

The English Premier League is arguably one of the biggest leagues in the world, with millions of viewers worldwide and truly one of the most lucrative leagues in world football.

Despite the Premier League boasting some of the biggest clubs in the world such as Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea Football Club, Arsenal Football Club, Liverpool Football Club and Tottenham Hotspur the league has become one-sided in recent history and in a way fit the description of a ‘farmer’s league’.

A farmer’s league is categorized by having one club dominating all the other clubs and winning the league title early in the season and the league winner can be predicted before the first match of the season because all the other clubs would be fighting for second place. That has been the reality of the biggest league in the world, under the strong grip of Manchester City.

The Citizens’ rise coincides with the EPL’s competitiveness dwindling, a case of one club being too good and far removed from its closest rivals.

FILE PHOTO: Gabriel Martinelli celebrates after scoring a winner for Arsenal against Man City on Sunday afternoon. PICTURE: Getty Images

To make this point clearer in 10 years the league has been won by four different clubs, which reads well until examined that three teams won the league title a combined four times.

The current defending champions City have won the league title six times in the past 10 years with the previous three being in a row, which highlights the dominance of the Citizens. The other three clubs to win the league are Chelsea twice, Liverpool and Leicester City winning one each.

Another pointer to the lack of competitiveness in the league is the point difference between the league winner, runners-up and the club in third.

To paint a more accurate picture below are the stats from the past four seasons:


• 2020 Winners: Liverpool 99 points
Second: Manchester City 81 points
Third: Manchester United 66 points


• 2021 Winners: Manchester City 86 points
Second: Manchester United 74 points
Third: Liverpool 69 points

• 2022 Winners: Manchester City 93 points
Second: Liverpool 92 points
Third: Chelsea 74 points

• 2023 Winners: Manchester City 89 points
Second: Arsenal 84 points
Third: Manchester United 74 points

FILE PHOTO: Son Heung-min of Spurs in disbelief after the North London club was knocked out of the Champions League by AC Milan. PICTURE: Getty Images

But the 2023/24 season on the other hand is promising to be a race and a proper title challenge. After nine match days, there is no runaway leader or clear favourite like in the seasons before. It is thus refreshing to see four clubs within touching distance of one another.

Spurs, who are at the summit are on 23 points, are not far ahead of second-place Manchester City, who are equal on 21 with Arsenal in third. Then it is Liverpool fourth on 20 points. This current season is breaking away from the symptoms of being a well-resourced farmer’s league.

Having a competitive Premier League would do good for English clubs in Europe as previous winners of the EPL were humbled by so-called winners of the leagues dubbed as Farmer’s League such as Bundesliga (Germany) and or LA Liga (Spain).

With City currently being champions of Europe as holders of the UEFA Champions League it might be a sign of things to come with a much stronger Premier League.

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