Usually when we write the intro to our predictions blog we try to make an impassioned case for why the upcoming football season will be the very best and most exhilarating to date. But seeing as 2019/20 finished only what seems like fifteen minutes and two ad breaks ago we’re going to cut to the chase: this season could be a difficult one to watch.
Hold up, we said could be. While there’s every chance this season may be dogged by injury and fatigue owing to a unfathomably packed schedule (or cut short altogether) it could also be just as marvellous as ever. Think about it this way: with Pep, Frank, Ole and Jose on their tails, Liverpool are defending an English title for the first time in decades! Chelsea have bought a vast amount of exciting continental talent! Leeds United are back! The UEFA Champions League is as wide open as it has been for years! And there are still three episodes left of that Jose Mourinho documentary!
For all these reasons and more, we promise 2020/21 will be a lot of fun. And even if it isn’t, we still get UEFA EURO 2020 for dessert next summer.
So, on the eve of opening weekend in the Premier League, we, the staff of Icons.com, are back after a year off from embarrassing ourselves with wayward predictions like Spurs finishing second and Jean Michael Seri being signing of the season for 2018/19. This year we hope to more accurately answer the burning questions keeping everyone awake at night. But don’t just take our word for it, send us your predictions for the season ahead on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. As ever, you can hardly do much worse.
Edward Freedman, Non-Executive Chairman
Premier League winners: Pep Guardiola has learned from last year’s mistakes and has added to his MANCHESTER CITY squad well enough to overturn Liverpool who need to strengthen and haven’t. They don’t have the depth. Keep an eye on Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal – hanging on to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was huge for the Gunners.
2nd – Liverpool 3rd – Chelsea 4th – Arsenal
Relegated: Fulham, Newcastle United and Aston Villa
Golden Boot: GABRIEL JESUS has to step up this season with Leroy Sane gone and Sergio Aguero ageing. It’s a bold choice but I don’t want to be boring and go with Harry Kane!
Serie A winners: If Luis Suarez ends up in Turin expect him to further improve JUVENTUS with goals. The man loves a challenge!
La Liga winners: There will be big changes at FC BARCELONA and while I don’t trust Ronald Koeman, I just see the club getting it right again. I don’t want to bet against them in any way.
Bundesliga winners: How can anyone bet against BAYERN MUNICH? They’re just a juggernaut who remind me of FC Barcelona at their 2011 peak.
UEFA Champions League winners: If Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann gel as well as they can, and Ansu Fati steps in to replace Suarez, FC BARCELONA get it done.
UEFA Europa League winners: I like NAPOLI here.
Signing of the season: KAI HAVERTZ could be the next Kevin De Bruyne. He’s the signing that closes the gap to the top two.
Mark my words… Erling Braut Haaland will sign for FC Barcelona in January. He’s a very marketable player and with all the departures at the club, the striker is just what they need.
Dan Jamieson, CEO
Premier League winners: The best team of last season has not weakened. LIVERPOOL will top the table once again. City, definitely second best last year, now are without David Silva and Leroy Sane. Chelsea have made great signings on paper but it’ll be too difficult to integrate them all at once.
2nd – Manchester City 3rd – Chelsea 4th – Manchester United
Relegated: Fulham, West Bromwich Albion and West Ham United
Golden Boot: MOHAMED SALAH does the business for the champions.
Signing of the season: I was excited to see TIMO WERNER at Anfield but I have to say less so now.
My team, Liverpool, will… will own our perch once again with English title number 20 and European crown number seven.
Mark my words… Pep Guardiola will be gone from Manchester City by the end of the season. Everyone will fall in love with Leeds United boss Marcelo Biesla and Lionel Messi will decide to stay at Barça til the end of his career.
Ben Soley, Sales and Marketing Manager
Premier League winners: I could list the top four in almost any order as this year’s title race will be much closer than last year’s with Manchester United and Chelsea strengthening so much. That said, I’m sticking with LIVERPOOL.
2nd – Manchester City 3rd – Manchester United 4th – Chelsea
Relegated: Crystal Palace, West Bromwich Albion and Aston Villa
Golden Boot: PIERRE EMERICK-AUBAMEYANG and MOHAMED SALAH will share top spot again unless Sergio Aguero stays fit for more than 30 games. Expect a valiant first season effort from Timo Werner as well.
Serie A winners: LAZIO-POOL with Lucas Leiva, Pepe Reina and Luis Alberto leading the way.
La Liga winners: Though Lionel Messi‘s form will be as strong as ever, a fully-fit Eden Hazard and better organisation from top to bottom wins REAL MADRID back to back titles.
Bundesliga winners: The same old story in Germany as BAYERN MUNICH fend off Dortmund and one other several games from the finish line.
Signing of the season: Let’s go with the obvious choice of TIMO WERNER. Adam Lallana at Brighton and Hove Albion will be a close second.
My team, Liverpool, will… go out of the League Cup early, have a wobble in the Premier League but still end up on 85+ points and win silverware. The front three will be disbanded at the end of the season.
Mark my words… Abdoulaye Doucoure will earn a big move within 18 months of arriving at Everton – perhaps to Paris Saint-Germain? Cambridge United win automatic promotion from League Two. Aleksandar Mitrovic will get sent off at least once with seven plus yellow cards.
Alistair Hunter, Senior Editor
Premier League winners: Sadly, LIVERPOOL haven’t gone anywhere. It won’t be quite the stroll last year turned out to be but it’s clear Manchester City haven’t invested in the right areas (no offence, Issa Kabore). Could a change at the top come just below the title race?
2nd – Chelsea 3rd – Manchester City 4th – Manchester United
Relegated: Brighton & Hove Albion, West Bromwich Albion and Aston Villa
Golden Boot: I love the idea of TIMO WERNER coming into the league and tearing it up. Christian Pulisic in particular is going to love feeding this guy.
Serie A winners: This is it. This is the year INTERNAZIONALE prise the Scudetto away from Juve.
La Liga winners: FC Barcelona are a mess and Real Madrid don’t inspire me all that much. Perhaps it’s time for the highest paid manager in the world to go one better than simply closing the gap. Believe it: I’m picking Joao Felix and ATLETICO MADRID.
Bundesliga winners: Only a mad man would go against BAYERN MUNICH, right? Even I’m not bold enough to predict a changing of the guard in three of the top four major European leagues.
UEFA Champions League winners: At some point PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN are finally going to get it right and I’ll keep backing them until they finally do. We’re entering into year four of me being stubborn about this.
UEFA Europa League winners: So, TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR need to win a trophy and their manager is who exactly? Dare I say it’s all or nothing in Europe’s second tier.
My team, Rangers, will… get the job done and finally win Scottish title number 55. Not only is it a must in 2021 to halt ten-in-a-row, it needs to be achieved while this particularly talented and somewhat expensive squad is still intact. Lest I give up on football and start following Kabaddi.
Mark my words… injury issues will plague a number of teams, not just in England, but all around Europe. We’ll see Mohamed Salah decelerate towards his Anfield exit as he wallows in the absence of dressing room bestie Dejan Lovren. There will be a 6-3 scoreline in the Premier League.
Jamie White, Online Content & Social Media Producer
Premier League winners: MANCHESTER CITY
2nd – Manchester United 3rd – Liverpool 4th – Chelsea
Relegated: Fulham, West Browich Albion and Brighton and Hove Albion
Golden Boot: Chelsea new boy TIMO WERNER will top the scoring charts in his debut season in England.
UEFA Champions League winners: Instead of focussing on the Premier League, which was finally won last season, LIVERPOOL win big in Europe.
UEFA Europa League winners: Them again: I’m going with UEFA Europa League specialists SEVILLA.
Signing of the season: Having spent quite a lot time watching AFC Bournemouth I can tell you Nathan Ake is a terrific player and a superb signing for Pep Guardiola and Manchester City. Timo Werner will also prove value for money.
My team, Liverpool, will… not be nearly as consistent in the Premier League but will instead focus on the UEFA Champions League.
Mark my words… null and void is coming. Another major breakout of Covid-19 will bring an early end to the season.