The Premier League’s unbelievable season saw a 5,000-1 shot knockout the big club heavyweights as the fantastic Foxes claimed the EPL crown – but who won the other awards, who were the Golden Boys, the top XI, the and what will the top tipsters be looking at ahead of next season?
1 champion pic.twitter.com/5ynzAp6NWv
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 18, 2016
‘Little’ Leicester will be taking on the European giants in the Champions League and will be joined by Arsenal, Spurs and Manchester City in the world’s top club competition. Manchester United and Southampton will contest the Europa League while Liverpool’s midweek defeat in the EL final to Sevilla, combined with their 8th placed EPL finish, means they won’t be playing European football next season.
However, fans, punters and online football tipsters will remember the last time Liverpool faced such a fate – and the Steven Gerrard slip that cost them the title. Then they had Luis Suarez banging in the goals but now they have Jurgen Klopp in charge with a full pre-season and transfer window to optimize and show his credentials.
Will the Reds challenge for silverware next year or can deposed champs Chelsea drop the ‘chumps’ label and deliver under their incoming new Italian boss Antonio Conte? Find out what the top online soccer tipsters think.
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 20, 2016
THE PREMIER LEAGUE RECORD BREAKERS
The Premier League saw five sides break club records to achieve their best ever seasons and highest ever Premier League finishes.
The Fantastic Foxes, of course, claimed the title for the first time in their 132 year history but Spurs, Southampton, Bournemouth and Watford also achieved their best ever EPL placings.
Though Tottenham’s title challenge withered in the final games – allowing bitter rivals Arsenal to beat them to the runners-up spot – Mauricio Pochettino managed to lead his men to their first top three BPL finish beating their previous best fourth place (achieved twice in 2009-10 and 2011-12).
Bournemouth’s debut in the Premier League meant they were guaranteed their highest ever finish but Eddie Howe confounded pundits by staving off relegation and achieving 16th.
THE SAINTS GO MARCHING ON – UP THE LEAGUE
The Saints continued their year-on-year rise – seven wins in their final nine games earned Southampton a sixth placed finish and online tipsters and bettors will be paying close attention to Southampton next season, especially if they can keep hold of their greatly admired boss Ronald Koeman.
For Watford it was a case of third time lucky – their previous two EPL campaigns saw them finish bottom and they were many punters tips for the drop. However, Quique Sanchez Flores led the Hornets to a 13th placed finish, yet even this was not enough for the owners who announced the popular Spaniard and former Real Madrid star won’t be in charge at Vicarage Road next season.
ASTON VILLA’S WORST EVER
Aston Villa’s worst ever EPL season saw them relegated from Premier League for the first time in their history. The former European Cup winners face life in the Championship with new Chinese owners and the Villans will face tough competition to bounce back at the first attempt.
Not least from Newcastle who also dropped out of the EPL – along with Norwich – but online soccer tipsters will be waiting to see if Rafa Benitez stays before making any predictions about who will be back at the top table.
PREMIER LEAGUE’S GOLDEN BOYS
Premier League goal scorers are golden and Harry Kane’s brilliant season was capped with the Golden Boot Award for finishing as the EPL’s leading goal scorer with 25.
A total 1,026 goals were scored in the EPL and Tottenham’s Golden Boy Kane – who pipped 24-goal-men Sergio Aguero and Jamie Vardy to the award – said: “To finish second in the scoring charts last year and follow that up by winning it this year is something I’m very proud of.”
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) May 17, 2016
Arsenal keeper Petr Cech has Manchester United’s Chris Smalling to thank for be named the outright winner of the Golden Glove award for the highest number for clean sheets this season. Smalling’s own goal against Bournemouth denied Man Utd’s David De Gea a share of the prize which went to Cech in his first season with the Gunners.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) May 15, 2016
THE TOP BOSS, TOP PLAYER, TOP XI
The top boss was table topping Claudio Ranieri who picked up the PFA Manager of the Year Award for his fairy tale achievement with Leicester.
The PFA Team of the Year was dominated by Leicester and Spurs players with four from both clubs named in the XI.
— PFA (@PFA) April 21, 2016
Riyad Mahrez was named PFA Players’ Player of the Year for his outstanding displays for the Foxes while team mate Jamie Vardy had further cause for ‘having a party’ by being named the Football Writers’ Player of the Year.
— harry (@hbukshh) May 13, 2016
THE BPL YOUNG GUNS
The BPL’s young guns came to the fore this season – none more so than Tottenham’s 20-year-old midfielder Dele Alli whose emergence for club and country earned him the PFA Young layer of the Year award.
His team also had the lowest average age for a starting XI – 24 years and 328 days – the only side under 25; while Liverpool fielded the youngest ever starting XI in Premier League history – the side who faced (and lost 3-1 to) Swansea on May 1 had an average age of 23 years and 218 days.
Swansea also faced the oldest BPL XI when West Brom sent out an XI whose average age was 30 years and 315 days on December 26.
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 20, 2016
MAN UTD’s FA CUP FOR LVG
Man Utd take on Crystal Place in the FA Cup final tomorrow (Saturday) – a win could see Louis Van Gaal keep his job after a season of growing discontent. Can the Red Devils beat the Eagles and keep LvG in place? Find out what the best online football tipsters think.
By: Joe Cahal