The 2015/16 football season kicks off this weekend – and you can warm-up for the new campaign with our comprehensive guide to all 20 of the Premier League teams.
Below you’ll find links to top flight team profiles, complete with all the transfer news, line-ups, fixtures and predictions on each club.[separator type=”thin”]
For the third summer in succession, Arsenal have had substantial funds available to add quality to the squad and have not had to sell a player against their will. These two factors combined together have been the key behind Arsenal’s slow but steady improvement over the last three years.
The list of honours collected by this group of players stands at back to back FA Cups. The question on every Gooner’s mind is whether they can take to next step and become Premier League champions.[separator type=”thin”]
After challenging the established top 4 under Martin O’Neil, Aston Villa have tumbled down the Premier League in recent seasons with fans now more accustomed to being in a battle against survival.
Top scorer Christian Benteke and club captain Fabian Delph have both moved on to pastures new during the summer, meaning Tim Sherwood’s recruitment will decide the outcome of the Villains’ campaign.
Liverpool and Tottenham have both struggled to get new squads to gel in recent seasons where as Southampton flourished last year despite selling many of their major stars showing that Sherwood’s task is tough but nonetheless achievable.[separator type=”thin”]
AFC Bournemouth are Premier League newbies, but The Cherries will be hoping to do more than just make up the numbers, as they look to surpass the feats of Swindon Town, Blackpool and Barnsley and avoid instant relegation. Winning the Championship title with 90 points, Eddie Howe’s men played some of the most aesthetically pleasing football in the country and bring top flight football to Dorset for the first time.[separator type=”thin”]
Chelsea come into this season as defending champions. Following a dominant campaign that saw The Blues lift both the Premier League and League Cup, Chelsea have been very quiet this summer. Despite the lack of transfer activity, it is clear that José Mourinho and his squad are gearing up for a title defence.[separator type=”thin”]
After a strong finish to last season and some astute business in the transfer window it looks as though The Eagles are going to continue establishing themselves as a mid-table Premier League side. Can Crystal Palace possibly improve on their highest placed finish of 10th in the top flight which they achieved in May?[separator type=”thin”]
Everton have established themselves in the upper echelons of the Premier League during recent years, first under David Moyes and then in Roberto Martinez’s first season at Goodison Park. The ever present Premier League club have been battling for Europe during the majority of campaigns and will hope to return to those heights after a blip last season.[separator type=”thin”]
It all seemed too good to be true at the start of summer for The Foxes as they survived the drop with a tremendous run of results. The Midlands club first lost Pearson’s son and other members of the youth team after a racist scandal, then they lost Pearson himself after an ongoing tense period between himself and the powers above.
Now with Claudio Ranieri at the helm, they will want to build on survival and attempt to establish themselves in the top flight. However, it may just prove too big a task to complete.[separator type=”thin”]
It is often said that an animal is at its most dangerous when wounded. Will this be case with a Liverpool team with a huge point to prove? Last season was one to forget for Rodgers and company, and everyone at the club will be raring to put the recent past far behind them.
Money has been spent on fresh talent and it appears yet another partially new-look team will take to the field come August the 9th. Will the revamped Liverpool be good enough to secure a top four finish?[separator type=”thin”]
With the Premier League season less than a week away we’re looking at how Manchester City performed last season, as well as previewing and predicting the key players for Manuel Pellegrini’s side this season.[separator type=”thin”]
It is season number two for Louis Van Gaal at Manchester United and expectation levels have risen higher than just finishing in the top four, almost reaching the dizzy heights of life under Alex Ferguson. The Old Trafford faithful are expecting a title charge but with the added stress of Champions League football to contend with, will Van Gaal’s men be up to the task in the coming campaign?[separator type=”thin”]
Norwich completed the rarest of rare feats last season, bouncing back into the Premier League at the first time of asking after relegation in the 2013/14 season. Finishing 18th and slipping into the relegation zone only as the season drew to a close, Norwich completed good business in the off-season with Snodgrass and Fer leaving for big fees.
Cameron Jerome and Lewis Grabban were brought in and hit 30 goals between them as Norwich finished 3rd before winning promotion through the play-offs. Norwich have spent this summer strengthening the side in key areas, and with exciting young manager Alex Neil at the helm, they will be looking to enjoy the 2015/16 season as much as possible; their 25th in the top flight.[separator type=”thin”]
After the intense media speculation surrounding Southampton last summer where meltdowns, boardroom chaos and even relegation were mentioned following what many perceived to be an asset strip, Ronald Koeman steadied the ship in his first season in English football.
Now he faces a different challenge; trying to achieve the same results but with European football and increased speculation. Oh, and without arguably the finest Saints player for a generation.[separator type=”thin”]
As Stoke City enter their third season under Mark Hughes, Potters fans will be hoping for another successful campaign as the Welshman continues to cement the club in the top half of the Premier League table whilst playing aesthetically pleasing football at the same time.[separator type=”thin”]
Sunderland being a Premier League club in 2015-16 is something of an achievement in itself. The last three seasons have seen managerial changes as the board desperately tried to keep the club up.
With Dick Advocaat being persuaded to stay on as manager for one more year after guiding them to safety last season, many fans will be hoping to see them enjoy a safer season. In reality, the squad hasn’t improved that much and it is likely to be another nerve-racking final couple of months to the season for the Black Cats’ supporters.[separator type=”thin”]
Before looking at what Swansea can hope to achieve in what is set to be one of the most competitive Premier League seasons to date, it is important to first place into context the achievements of Swansea City in last year’s campaign under the ever-impressive tutelage of Gary Monk.[separator type=”thin”]
Tottenham Hotspur seem to have been in a perennial period of transition now for a good few seasons, with summers of disruption and shake-ups being all too commonplace.
However, they have had a stable transfer window thus far with no significant departures and in retaining Mauricio Pochettino, they have a man at the helm with a clear understanding of how to get the best out of the technically gifted players in the squad.
Whilst Harry Kane will still most likely be their main man, I expect them to have a more balanced season which is not so dependent on the England striker this time around.[separator type=”thin”]
Watford return to the top division of English football after an eight year absence as they look to preserve their Premier League status beyond the first season for the first time ever.
They will be looking to build on some brilliant form last season as they look to follow in the footsteps of Leicester City and beat the drop at the first attempt.
The Hornets look to combine the core from last season with lots of additions to the squad as they look for relative success.[separator type=”thin”]
West Bromwich Albion go into their sixth consecutive season in the Premier League on the back of a 13th-placed finish under the guidance of a manager who has never been relegated.
Tony Pulis; who joined the club at the turn of 2015, will be eager to assemble his own side after inheriting a squad containing 10 of Alan Irvine’s signings that; Lescott apart, have all struggled.
A recent takeover from a Chinese consortium failed to materialise so Jeremy Peace remains the owner going into the new season, doubtless with debatably realistic ambitions of replicating the 11/12 and 12/13 seasons by finishing in the top 10.[separator type=”thin”]
West Ham United will be embarking on their fourth consecutive campaign in the top flight since their return in 2012. It will be their first time not playing under the guidance of Sam Allardyce following his rather unceremonious removal and replacement by Slaven Bilic once the 14/15 season had come to a close.
This will be the Hammers’ final season at The Boleyn Ground before they move onto the Olympic Stadium. They hoped to give it a fitting send-off as the club returned to European football for the first time since the 2006/07 season, but an early exit in the qualification rounds put pay to this ambition.[separator type=”thin”]
Legends printed for FREE at @CampoRetro this weekend. Pick up a classic shirt from only £20: http://bit.ly/1CSHHj7
Why Jose Mourinho’s treatment of Luke Shaw has crossed the line
The Portuguese manager has been highly critical of Luke Shaw this season.
The fractious relationship between Jose Mourinho and Luke Shaw plumbed new depths when the left-back was substituted at half-time in Manchester United’s FA Cup victory over Brighton & Hove Albion. The 22-year-old had been handed a rare opportunity to impress at Old Trafford but lasted only 45 minutes.
Speaking about Shaw in his post-match interview, Mourinho said: “Luke, in the first half, every time they came in his corridor, the cross came in and a dangerous situation was coming. I was not happy with his performance.”
The differences between the pair now appear to be irreconcilable. Shaw, who was signed by Louis van Gaal in the summer of 2014, has been used sparingly by Mourinho. The former Southampton starlet has made just 18 Premier League appearances under the Portuguese in a career that has been blighted by injuries.
Being substituted at half-time is almost as embarrassing as it gets for a player and Shaw’s mood will not have improved after being publicly criticised by his manager. It’s certainly not the first time Mourinho has chosen to talk candidly to the media about his concerns with the 22-year-old.
Some players require an arm around the shoulder to perform at their peak, while for others it takes a kick up the backside. Mourinho, opting for the latter, does nothing without reason and has clearly tried to spark a reaction from Shaw, without success.
From being one of English football’s brightest prospects after making his World Cup debut aged just 18, Shaw, who has seven England caps to his name, is in danger of not fulfilling the potential that convinced United to spend what was then a world-record fee for a teenager.
Mourinho’s tactic of singling out individuals who have not met his standards is in stark contrast to Sir Alex Ferguson, who never blamed his players in public. It has divided opinion among pundits, with Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier claiming the United manager is ‘destroying’ Shaw.
Mourinho is an expert at using smokescreens to distract from his side’s unconvincing performances. And this latest controversy has moved the narrative on from United’s shock Champions League exit at the hands of Sevilla.
Tough love is one thing, but the sustained, public attack on Shaw is unacceptable. If Mourinho genuinely believes he is not good enough to represent United, then fair enough. But to continually vilify the youngster’s performances is a step too far and one that could irreparably damage Shaw’s confidence.
This is not to say that Shaw is a completely innocent bystander. Mourinho’s predecessor, Louis van Gaal, also questioned his desire and general conditioning when he joined United four years ago. Indeed, the Dutchman signed Shaw up to a tailored exercise regime in an effort to improve his fitness.
But while van Gaal’s treatment had the desired effect, Mourinho’s has done the opposite. Being publicly humiliated on a routine basis does neither party any favours.
In all likelihood, Shaw’s disappointing United career will come to an end this summer. A fresh start away from the toxicity under Mourinho is exactly what he needs.
Keanan Bennetts has perfect opportunity to impress Mauricio Pochettino this week
The left-sided star has a chance to impress in first-team training during the international break.
With the international week in full flow, plenty of teams in the Premier League have seen their squads diminished by call-ups to national teams.
Tottenham Hotspur are one such side. Nonetheless, with most of the first-team squad away with their respective nations, work continues at Hotspur Way.
In order for Spurs to have a full complement in training, plenty of young talent needs to be pulled in to the ranks.
Mauricio Pochettino will, therefore,e get a chance to see some of his young players training with regular first-team players such as Fernando Llorente, Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura.
One player who will be training with the first-team this week is talented wide-man Keanan Bennetts, according to London Live.
The 19-year-old left-winger has been catching the eye for the club’s youth team in recent weeks, making the news after scoring a fantastic goal for the under-19s against Monaco in the UEFA Youth League last month.
Bennetts has also been attracting interest for his positional dexterity. The wide-man has played at left-back in recent times and it could be that is his future best position.
This week he will be up against some excellent players such as Lamela and Moura, who did not receive selection to the Argentina and Brazil national teams, respectively.
If he can prove himself with this calibre of player, Pochettino will have to take notice.
It is coming to a point in his Tottenham career when Bennetts has to make such an impact. The teenager is out of contract at Spurs in the summer and needs to ensure he is kept on for at least one more season.
Tottenham fans who follow the youth teams are certain he is deserving of such a chance. If he can show Pochettino what he is capable of this week, then a new deal will surely be in the pipeline for the talented wide-man.
Despite improvement, Everton should not rekindle Thomas Vermaelen interest
The Belgian defender has been in better form for Barcelona this season.
Rumours have emerged today suggesting Everton could be back in for Belgian defender Thomas Vermaelen.
Catalan newspaper Sport has reported that the 32-year-old could be offered a new deal by Barcelona, with a team from the Premier League interested in signing him.
Sport Witness has openly hypothesised that Everton could be that team. Whilst there is no confirmation or substantiated report that is the case, the boot certainly fits.
Last summer Everton tried to sign Vermaelen.
As reported by the Liverpool Echo, at the time Barcelona vetoed a loan move to Everton as they felt the defender could be a useful asset.
The Belgian certainly has. After struggling with injuries and form throughout most of his Barcelona tenure the former Arsenal man has enjoyed a good season.
The 32-year-old has been a genuine asset to the Catalans, despite still being used sparingly, and such form has even seen him win back a place in Roberto Martinez’s national selection for Belgium.
If it is Everton interested in Vermaelen it is easy to see why. Centre-back has been a major problem for the club this season.
However, Vermaelen, or a player of his ilk, is not the answer to the Toffees’ woes.
The Belgian is obviously a talented player with plenty of experience, but Everton need to freshen up their back-line.
Ashley Williams and Phil Jagielka’s age has shown in recent months.
The pair have been, at the best, inconsistent for the past 18 months and Everton need fresh young talent in the heart of defence if they are to succeed.
Vermaelen is not only 32 but also immensely injury prone. Everton need reliable figures to plug their leaky defences and the Belgian can simply not be relied upon.
Whilst on paper it seems a good deal, and one Everton could certainly turn to their benefit.
The truth is supporters of the Goodison Park outfit will hope they are not the club reportedly keen on bringing Vermaelen back to the Premier League.
Are Chelsea finally going to see the best of Alvaro Morata?
Sessegnon or Bale? Past or future? Spurs must make right move this summer
Amadou Haidara released by Leeds United, bringing an end to bizarre transfer chapter
Jack Wilshere’s Everton arrival would surely spell the end for Morgan Schneiderlin?
Matthew Pennington’s future looks away from Everton after loan woes
Tottenham Hotspur3 weeks ago
Tottenham Hotspur must push Toby Alderweireld toward Barcelona
Liverpool3 weeks ago
Jurgen Klopp’s brave January decision is playing off thanks to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Brentford4 weeks ago
Romaine Sawyers – Blossoming in the Championship with play-off contenders Brentford
Liverpool4 weeks ago
Mohamed Salah: Is Liverpool’s Egyptian star the best player in the world right now?
English Premier League3 weeks ago
Liverpool 2-0 Newcastle United: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain growing into role under Jurgen Klopp
Chelsea4 days ago
Are Chelsea finally going to see the best of Alvaro Morata?
Liverpool3 weeks ago
Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold finds himself at the centre of Jurgen Klopp’s plans
Arsenal4 weeks ago
Arsenal 0-3 Manchester City: Three talking points from Wembley