EPL set to return

EPL

A day every soccer fan has been waiting for

Man City Vs Arsenal to kick us off

Mark your calendars for June 17th. If all goes according to plan, the EPL is set to return with Aston Villa Vs Sheffield United, and a showdown between Manchester City and Arsenal. All other matches are slated to start June 19th-21st.

EPL teams have agreed on a provisional end date of July 25th with 92 matches left to play. Moreover, with The Champions League and Europa League set to play in early August, it’s going to be a soccer bonanza. All of these matches coming in such a short period of time is great for fans, but what about the players?

Injury and fitness worries

Jurgen Klopp, and countless other managers have had their say on how fixture congestion effects their teams. Injuries and match fitness will be a concern for all managers. Borussia Dortmund suffered a setback with Erling Haaland picking up a knee injury against Bayern, after he played three matches in 10 days. Dortmund are unsure about the amount of time he will be out, and it will defiantly have an effect on their title chase. Although, it may already be over. That amount of game time is taxing on the players bodies, even when they have access to season long training. The effects that limited training during stay at home orders may have had is going to be something players and managers will have to think about.

Learning from the Bundesliga

Liverpool have all but secured the EPL crown. An Arsenal win Vs Manchester City, along with the Reds winning their next match would make sure of it. The relegation battle is a little bit tighter, as is the fight for the European qualification spots. From what we have experienced watching the Bundesliga post COVID-19 matches playing at home hasn’t been much of an advantage. Home teams have only won five matches, with away sides winning a staggering 12 times. Making up the rest of the results are 10 draws. The momentum and advantages teams may have held prior is surely a concern for some, because all teams are basically starting off equal, mentally at least. Add to the fact, some high profile matches may be played at neutral venues due to safety and security concerns. Although, this suggestion has been greatly opposed by most teams.

Sheffield United in the Champions League

If the Budesliga trends are replicated in the EPL, Sheffield United should like their chances. The Blades have a match in hand, and have played two less away matches than most teams. They currently sit 7th in the away league table, ahead of Manchester United who occupy 5th place in the EPL standings. Emphasis has been put on 5th place since it could be a ticket into The Champions League. Sheffield United surely have their eyes set on the prize. The way things have shaken out in the Budesliga, we wouldn’t bet against it happening.


Who will go down?

So what does it look like at the bottom? Realistically, providing nothing crazy happens, six teams are fighting the drop. Norwich sit at the bottom of the table and will most likely go down. That leaves two relegation places. In The Gaffers opinion, these five teams will be fighting to avoid the drop; Aston Villa, Bournemouth, Watford, West Ham and Brighton. Southampton seem to safe. They have one of the best Away records this season in the EPL, and a nice cushion that almost guarantees survival.

West Ham will stay up. They have the talent, and a better away record than the other teams involved in the scrap. We feel Brighton have enough to beat the drop, especially with Graham Potter in charge. He is a quality coach and knows his stuff to see Brighton to safety. It’s Watford and Bournemouth that we think will go down with Norwich. Both of these sides have been languishing in the middle of the table in past seasons, it’s time for some new blood. And, we want Aston Villa to survive. The Gaffer likes Villa. They have some talented players, with a rich club history. It’s been nice to see them back in the Premiership. Let’s hope they can stay there.

Soccer, we’ve missed you

Watch La Liga on fuboTV

To reflect on life without soccer, it has just been plain awful. We might have discovered new talents and hobbies, but nothing will ever replace soccer. To say we have missed soccer is an understatement. Hope though is on the horizon. We can finally get back to watching our favorite EPL teams and players take the pitch once more. Around the world, the French, Dutch, and Scottish leagues ended their seasons early. However, the Spanish La Liga is set to begin June 8th, and the Italian Serie A will start June 20th. There will be plenty of soccer to keep us fully satisfied.

We know you’re probably just as a excited for the season to restart as much as we are. Let us know what you have missed the most, and what you’re most looking forward too in the return of the EPL!

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