As of September 22, Manchester City sits atop of the Premier League with 6 games played and 15 points. Venerable Manchester United, their arch rival in the city, has played the same number of games but drew one of their games. The hunt is clearly on for the title, but how will things shake out nearer Christmas?
Southampton Almost Pulled Off a Surprise Victory
Whilst Southampton surely lack the fame or notoriety of a team like Manchester United (or their player purchasing budget for that matter), they put on a spirited fight in their match on Sunday 20 September against Man U.
It was a back and forth battle with the Saints laying on the pressure throughout the game. Pelle, who at the time was not marked by a defender, found some free space and scored a late goal in the last few minutes of the match.
Ultimately, Man U managed to scrape through at full-time with a narrow 3-2 victory. What is interesting is that whilst one would think Man U would completely outshine Southampton who with the same number of games played in the Premier League only has 6 points to the Man U tally of 13, that simply didn’t happen.
Arsenal Picking Up the Pace But Not Without Its Difficulties
Arsene Wenger has been involved with the London-based team, Arsenal, for almost two decades. The last week has been particularly challenging for him with three of his best players being sent off due to incidents on the pitch.
There have been calls for more discipline among the players who are seemingly running amok on the field. George Graham, former Arsenal manager, was particularly vocal recently about this issue.
The antics on the pitch haven’t stopped the goals from flowing. Despite losing to Chelsea on Sunday, Arsenal are sitting in fifth position with 10 points which could easily be made up over the next 3-4 months. That is as long as Wenger can get his players back under control again.
Who’ll Be Ahead By Christmas?
Manchester United are the clear favourite to be ahead on points by the time snow is on the pitch in late December. One shouldn’t count out Manchester City who are currently leading the Premier League and will be loath to cede the leading position to their bigger rival.
Arsenal may keep coming on strong and slide in a few late wins to improve their position but it is unlikely that they’ll be leading the League table later in the season.The dark horse is possibly West Ham who have either won or lost their matches so far, never settling for a draw. They’re currently in third place only 3 points behind Manchester City and could be a contender if they can push the losses into the winning column in future games.
It’s tough to call a leader going into the winter months this early in the season with the growing strength of the teams in the Premier League.
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