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Next Year's Title Winners...
...I hate to start my first blog entry by quoting a Liverpool legend but Bill Shankley's "Football is a simple game complicated by idiots" seems to hold true every season I watch the Premier League season wind down. When you go through the squad of every title winning team throughout the years there are 4 'must haves' to every winning team....
From Van der Saar, De Gea & Peter Schmeichel to Cech & Courtois, Lehman & Seaman to Joe Hart. All the title winning teams have an excellent goalkeeper. Even the 2 surprise packages in Blackburn (Tim Flowers) and Leicester (Kasper Schmeichel) had a very good goalkeeper.
The next 'must have' is a quality central defensive partnership. Sir Alex would always say when building a new squad that you start with your centre backs and build from there. Bruce-Pallister, Stam-Johnsen/Berg, Vidic-Ferdinand. All 3 partnerships won leagues and the later 2 won the Champions League. The ideal partnership is a determined leader, who will die for the cause, Tony Adams like defender, joined by a Rolls Royce baller who is quick and can read the game like Rio. Kompany is a special case who can do both. John Terry for me is the best the Premiership has ever had and he wasn't even quick. Can't believe Chelsea are letting him go this summer. Says a lot about the club.
Moving into midfield. All the great teams had not only a great player but a player who will drag team mates with them when things are not going well, a Winner! Roy Keane is the standout here (1999 Champions League semi final rings a bell when he got a yellow and knew he would miss the final but proceeded to run all over Davids and Zidane and drag United to the final) closely followed by Patrick Vieira. I still watch the video of those two fighting in the tunnel before United spanked them 4-2 at Highbury. A great rivalry we will never see again. That pathetic show of handbags been thrown around by the pretenders of Tottenham and the sour Chelsea players at Stamford Bridge yesterday was so false and incredibly transparent. If you were actually tough and a winner, like Keane and Vieira you would have found a way to win the game and left it all on the field. You certainly would not have drawn to West Brom at home when in a title race. Tottenham have a lot of talent and 3 of the 4 'must haves' but no heart in their midfield. Eric Dier could be that player in the future, if so, and they hang on to all their players, they could be a force to be reckoned with. Chelsea need a clear out.
No surprise that all title winning teams have a consistent goal scorer. Whether its the grafter like Jamie Vardy, the fox in the box Van Nistelrooy or world class talent coming in from the left like Ronaldo & Henry. Every title winning team has a quality goal scorer. Aguero, Drogba, Rooney, Shearer to name a few more.
Nothing that I have mentioned above is rocket science. It is all pretty obvious. Which makes you wonder about the likes of Wenger and Van Gaal (if you are a fan of Van Gaal you probably wont like my posts).
If I was an Arsenal fan I would have had enough of Wenger aswell. He time and time again fails to buy the necessary tools to make up a winning team. Cech was a great signing but he was never going to be the difference. They are still lacking the CB partnership, the heart in midfield and a goal scorer. If he cant recognize that then maybe he just isn't that good of a manager? Moving on to Van Gaal. Spent an absolute fortune and comes back with the likes of Rojo and Memphis selling any natural goal scorer we had in our squad. Similar to Arsenal we have a great goal keeper but no Centre back and no goal scorer. People say he has given opportunities to many youngsters. That is great but not by design. It only happened because his training methods leave us with 40+ injuries per season and he bought 4 left backs rather than buy what we needed.
For me its a banker City will win the league next year. Pep alone with this squad could win it, add in a world class CM that he will buy and another Centre back they will be un-stoppable. Tottenham you missed your chance this year, Pep is coming and Mourinho is coming back, hopefully, you had your chance and you let Leicester win it. At least the rest of them, who decided to take a year off, have already won it....
1 - City
2 - United (If LVG is sacked)
4 - Arsenal
5 - Chelsea
6 - Liverpool
7 - Leicester