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Fixtures for the new Premier League season will be released at 9am tomorrow morning, so let's make some predictions for the new season which will probably look stupid in six months or so: 

  • Spurs will only scrape top-4 due to the Wembley effect.
  • Pep's Man City will struggle again due to Ederson failing to settle.
  • Arsenal to finish 6th.
  • Huddersfield and Brighton will survive. Newcastle will be relegated with a different manager in place by Christmas.
  • Watford will be relegated. Bournemouth will finish above Southampton.
  • Bilic or Puel will be the first manager to be sacked.

Talking of Newcastle...

Mike Ashley finally appears ready to sell Newcastle United after 10 turbulent, often unpopular years in charge, following the club’s promotion back to the Premier League. It is unclear how solid the reality is of the Chinese investors rumoured to be interested in buying Newcastle, given that overseas football takeovers have now been restrained in China, but it is seen as significant that Ashley has not moved to deny reports.

In recent years Ashley has moved strongly to reject periodic reports that he is preparing to sell the club, which he bought for £134m from Freddy Shepherd and Sir John Hall’s families in 2007, but this time Newcastle merely offered no comment. One of Ashley’s key operators in his Sports Direct businesses, Justin Barnes, was increasingly seen at St James’ Park last season, adding to perceptions that Ashley might be preparing the club for a sale.

Reports emerged on Monday that Chinese investors are in talks to invest in Newcastle, but so far none have been identified. In 2015 China’s president Xi Jinping’s call for China to buy into football led to a flurry of very expensive player signings by Chinese clubs, and Chinese business interests buying clubs including Aston Villa, Wolverhampton Wanderers, West Bromwich Albion and Birmingham City. China Media Capital also purchased a 13% stake in the holding company of Manchester City. After such huge expenditure, Xi’s attitude changed; in January a government spokesman said “irrational spending” in football would be curbed, and since then the flow of Chinese takeovers has stalled.

Ashley previously signalled his willingness to sell Newcastle after his chaotic first two years in charge culminated in relegation to the Championship in 2009. When no buyer materialised, he resolved to run the club less as a trophy asset and more as part of his business empire, streamlining procedures, cutting costs and branding St James’ Park with Sports Direct advertising. He has loaned £129m interest-free, paying off debts built up by the previous owners, and will want that back, plus his initial investment and a hearty profit for a sale, potentially around £400m.

Newcastle United’s most recent financial statements, for the relegation season of 2015-16, show the club made income of £126m, the Premier League’s ninth highest, and a £4m pre-tax profit. Run by managing director Lee Charnley, Newcastle are assumed to have coped financially with relegation, and Ashley has said publicly that the huge windfall from promotion into the Premier League’s booming TV deal will enable cash to be spent on players.

That financial position, the retention of Rafael Benítez as manager, and Newcastle’s status as one of England’s truly big and well-supported clubs, add up to an attractive prospect, in principle.

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I will grant you all of that.    Mind you, still not as funny as Stevie G saying that Liverpool mustn't let things slip, only to then go and slip on his arse against Chelsea.

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We're back! :w00t: 

Looking to travel over for Liverpool at home and Tottenham away this year at the very least. For a pissup with all my Liverpool fan friends and to see Newcastle at Wembley.

Here's hoping the fixture gods are kind to me in this regard.

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16 minutes ago, Rich said:

Hang on, I thought the new season began on or around 22 June?

To celebrate my birthday? 

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Its bizarre but Newcastle do make for a pretty attractive investment so soon after relegation. Rafa, the fans, the stadium and that sweet Premier League money make for a good combo.

I'm wary of the unknown because for every Man City, there's a Blackburn but its hard to worse than Ashley right? :mellow:

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1 hour ago, TCO said:

We're back! :w00t: 

Looking to travel over for Liverpool at home and Tottenham away this year at the very least. For a pissup with all my Liverpool fan friends and to see Newcastle at Wembley.

Here's hoping the fixture gods are kind to me in this regard.

@TCO pint?

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8 hours ago, TCO said:

I'm wary of the unknown because for every Man City, there's a Blackburn but its hard to worse than Ashley right? :mellow:

I mean considering the plight of clubs like Charlton, Blackpool and Leyton Orient, Ashley might actually count as not one of the worst owners in football.

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  • Spurs fail to make the Top 4
  • United continue to be stuck in perennial Europa League hell
  • Arsenal finish 3rd
  • City win the league
  • Huddersfield go down despite a valiant fight and being the token "breath of fresh air" club
  • Newcastle finish comfortably mid-table
  • Crystal Palace make an unexpected assault on the top half
  • Stoke are unlikely relegation candidates
Edited by Nerf
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Sending one of the promoted teams to Stamford Bridge for the opening weekend seems like the sort of thing they'd do.

Plus giving us a home game on Boxing Day for the FIFTH BLOODY YEAR IN A ROW just to force me to miss one of my season ticket fixtures.

I dunno about the season as a whole. My standard hope is that Chelsea are still in title contention come April. Then again the benchmark these days is more likely to be "don't do another 15/16".

Quarter finals in Europe would be great too (although just the 2nd round is probably more realistic).

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Mourinho will continue to be boring despite spending a ridiculous amount of money this summer but will end up winning the League cup or FA cup and finishing outside the top 4, just missing out but finishing 6th. 

Everton continue to shit the bed when it comes to a derby but will comfortably finish 7th by being simply the best of the rest. 

Arsenal finish 5th but will have a good Europa League run. They will be conflicted by whether to focus on the Europa league or pushing for 4th and will inevitably fall short on both. 

Top 4 stays the same (Chelsea, Spurs, City, Liverpool) except City will finish 2nd and Spurs will finish 3rd. They'll struggle with being at Wembley but Kane will continue to score a shit ton of goals. 

Liverpool will get to at least the quarters of the Champions League and will win a cup this season. 

Newcastle will finish in the top 10 along with Southampton and West Brom. 

Huddersfield, Brighton and Swansea will be the relegated teams. Watford and Swansea will keep interchanging who looks most likely to get relegated.  Huddersfield will be seen as a nice change of pace within the Prem. 

First manager sacked will be Billic or Puel if they haven't been sacked by the start of the season.  Watford will change manager at some point.  

 

 

 

 

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And oh look, on Boxing Day we're AT HOME TO SODDING BRIGHTON WHY

The back-to-back away games at the two Manchester clubs at the end of Feb looks bloody ominous.

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I'm happy with our fixtures. Don't seem to have a horrible run in at any point. 

Although it's weird we have the home game against Everton first. Used to it being the other way round. 

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I suspect our opening game against Spurs won't go quite the same way as when Spurs were last at St. James.

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Arsenal to win the Premier league undefeated, defend the FA cup and win the Europa League so hard they just give us the champions league trophy as well out of respect.

 

 

 

What?

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13 minutes ago, Kaney said:

Arsenal to win the Premier league undefeated, defend the FA cup and win the Europa League so hard they just give us the champions league trophy as well out of respect.

 

 

 

What?

Alternatively, fans burn the Emirates down by October.

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10 minutes ago, Nerf said:

Alternatively, fans burn the Emirates down by October.

An optimist, I see.

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We've been doing a predictions thing in work. I went with:

 

1. Man City

2. Chelsea

3. Man Utd

4. Tottenham

5. Liverpool

6. Arsenal

______

18. Crystal Palace

19. Burnley

20. Huddersfield

 

I will of course be wrong about all of this.

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16 hours ago, Lineker said:
  • Huddersfield and Brighton will survive. Newcastle will be relegated with a different manager in place by Christmas.

Shola in!

I fancy Huddersfield to do alright if he gets a bit of backing. Clearly gets the best out of his players and has contacts. And glasses.

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1 hour ago, Bigal said:

We've been doing a predictions thing in work. I went with:

 

1. Man City

2. Chelsea

3. Man Utd

4. Tottenham

5. Liverpool

6. Arsenal

______

18. Crystal Palace

19. Burnley

20. Huddersfield

 

I will of course be wrong about all of this.

Me too!

 

1. Chelsea

2. Man City

3. Liverpool

4. Arsenal

----

5. Tottenham

6. Man Utd

7. West Ham

8. Everton

9. Newcastle

10. Southampton

11. Bournemouth

12. Stoke

13. West Brom

14. Burnley

15. Crystal Palace

16. Brighton

17. Huddersfield

---

18. Leicester

19. Watford

20. Swansea

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1 hour ago, Colly said:

Shola in!

I fancy Huddersfield to do alright if he gets a bit of backing. Clearly gets the best out of his players and has contacts. And glasses.

I assume what happens is Liverpool buy all of Southampton (players, staff, stadium etc.) and then loan it to Huddersfield, who finish in the top half.

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