As 2014 comes to an end, 19 matches have been played so far, which marks the half way point of the season. This makes it a great opportunity to assess how all 20 teams have done so far this season.
Chelsea – 1st (A+)
Top of the class, only one defeat all season. It has been an excellent season so far for Jose Mourinho, his summer blockbuster signings in Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas have fired on all cylinders, with the likes of Hazard, Oscar, Matic and Courtois all playing their part. Only City look like stopping them to another title. Rightfully on top right now.
Man City – 2nd (B-)
City will be satisfied to be within striking distance of the leaders, but they had an underwhelming start to the season by their standards, losing 2 games by October. But a brilliant 7 game winning streak has taken them right back into contention. Though their over-reliance on the injury prone, but brilliant Sergio Aguero has been well demonstrated. Injuries have led to the likes of Milner being played up front. With Yaya Toure off for the African Cup of Nations, Man City will have to step up if they are to take that title away from Stamford Bridge.
Manchester United – 3rd (B)
The Van Gaal era did not get off to the best of starts. An opening day defeat, followed by 2 draws, and that stunning defeat at Leicester, where they contrived to lose a 3-1 lead in the second half to lose 5-3. Finding themselves down in 12th. But since then, the team have clicked well, and a run of 7 wins has taken them 3rd. Including big wins against rivals Arsenal and Liverpool. The title will be a long shot, but fans will be happy just to be in a top 4 spot.
Southampton – 4th (A)
After a miserable summer, almost losing half their starting 11 to rival teams, it seemed like Southampton would be favourites to make the drop down to the Championship. But Ronald Koeman made some great signings in the likes of Tadic and Pelle. A blistering start to the season had many sceptics saying it wouldn’t last, but to their credit, with the new year around the corner, the team still finds itself in the top 4, even if its only by goal difference.
Arsenal – 5th (D+)
Its been a stuttering season for the Gunners, after a summer of good transfers, and not losing any key players for once, it would have seemed a title challenge would be ominous after running close last season. But injuries and poor performances have left the Arsenal floundering at times. 4 defeats already, and several defensive implosions have left question marks over the team, only the sensational Alexis Sanchez has saved Arsenal further any blushes. Much improvement will be required over the second half of the season.
West Ham United – 6th (B+)
For the Hammers, its been a season of change. After the difficulties of last season, the teams dynamic has changed hugely. With the addition of the likes of Enner Valencia, Alex Song & Diafra Sakho, the team has been able to play a more attacking fluid game, rather than the long ball tactics they were associated with for the last few years. They find themselves well placed in the top 6, and will want to move into 2015 with the same form, and maybe even secure a top 8 finish.
Tottenham Hotspurs – 7th (C)
Their home form has been surprisingly poor, Tottenham are usually on good form at White Hart Lane, but the home fans have already seen 4 defeats, whereas the defeats to City and Chelsea were expected. Christian Erikson has been the shining light, saving Spurs on several occasions already this season, especially with winners against Swansea, Hull and Leicester. With only 2 points separating them from the Top 4 positions, the team still have a chance if they can string together a run of results.
Liverpool FC – 8th (D-)
The sale of Luis Suarez was expected to impact the performance of Liverpool, but with a host of new faces coming in, it was hoped Liverpool could kick on from last seasons near miss. The team has already lost more games this season, than the entire of last season. They have also been knocked out of the Champions League after fighting so hard to get back into it. The title is a long, long shot, Top 4 is still a reasonable target, but they are leaving themselves with very little margin for mistake.
Swansea City – 9th (C)
9th is where most would expect a team like Swansea, a mid table team in mid table. The Swans though have been among the top 8 throughout the season, Gary Monk still doing a decent job. They also crashed the welcome party, winning at Old Trafford in Van Gaal’s first game. A huge win against Arsenal, coming from a goal down was also another great result for them. Not much has been expected of the team, they should be safe from the relegation scrap. They will aim for a lucrative Europa League position come May.
Newcastle United FC – 10th (C+)
Its been a tumultuous season so far for Alan Pardew, a horrible start left them with 4 points from the first 7 games, not recording a single win. The pressure from the fans on the manager and the team was immense. It soon turned around, with an amazing 5 game winning run, including a stunning victory against Chelsea, who had at the time, been undefeated in the league so far. Since then, results have dropped back to the early season form. New signing Ayoze Perez though, may prove to be the bargain of the season. A mid table finish will be the target, but who knows what will happen, as it appears the manager may soon be departing.