Nearly done...

Published: Tuesday, 16 May 2017

It's hard to believe we're just about to complete our 4th Premier League season working with the mighty beINSports. It's incredible. When Andy and I first arrived in Qatar - 2022 seemed a lifetime away - this coming weekend the first WC stadium opens for the Emir Cup Final. The country is unrecognisable from the one I first saw in 2008 and now we're racing towards what I believe will be the best 'finals' ever. I know it doesn't suit a lot of you to read that, but my friends here in the Middle East are going to put on a spectacular festival.

Anyway, back to business - we're nearly there, another Premier League season is all but over.

Let's start at the top - well done Chelsea. If you finish top you deserve all the accolades that come your way. In short, you're there because you've been the best. Chelsea have been a champions mix of both entertainment and power. Brilliant. You'll get no arguments from me about their return to the summit.

I'm disappointed for Spurs. They're the team I enjoyed watching this season more than any other, but sadly a poor January cost them. My fear for this group (modern day phraseology!) is that they might never get any closer. I'm with Tim Sherwood - I just can't see them winning a title out of Wembley. Walker is leaving this summer, Eriksen could just as easily go as well and if he does - then what?

Why do I believe he might leave? Well, because it would follow a long standing 'Daniel Levy' transfer pattern. Historically he's always sold a player for the best price - that means at the top of their game and at the right age. He's had Ross Barkley ear-marked as a replacement for some time now, but after a recent meeting with Barkley's representatives in London I'm told Spurs aren't as convinced as they were. Watch this space..... 

I don't see any other 'short term' departures - but another season from now I think there'll definitely be significant movement.

City flopped - badly. I said in August that the Premier League would provide Guardiola's first 'genuine' test as a coach - it did and he failed. He's been honest enough to admit as much - so will he adapt to 'us' - or continue to try and change our league by sticking rigidly to his beliefs?

Jurgen Klopp looks like he's got Liverpool back in the Champions League - now he needs players that can complete in it. In my view, Liverpool are nowhere near strong enough to mount a serious challenge in that competition. Oh, and holding onto Coutinho would be the best piece of business they could do this summer.

I don't see any change at Arsenal - but even if there is - I just want someone to make a decision. The 'will he stay/will he go?' Arsene Wenger saga is tedious.

It's difficult to judge Mourinho yet. United were my tip for the title this year but like City, they've come up well short. Yes, Mourinho has delivered a trophy and he might yet double up, but unless he starts making United fun to watch again he's not going to last very long at Old Trafford - trophies or not. He has GOT to inject excitement back into his red 'machine'. Ok, they also went on that terrific unbeaten run, that took them from 6th to......6th, but my goodness they were hard to watch. It's Manchester United, but not as their fans know it and they won't stand for it.

Koeman has done a good job at Everton. I think they're in for a busy summer though.

I'm sorry David Moyes had such a miserable season. Of course he has to take responsibility for what happened, but it's been in the making for five seasons now. I know what he's said about being on a 4-year contract, but I don't think he'll stay.

Perhaps there's a job there for Nigel Pearson - or perhaps we'll see him at Middlesbrough? We'll definitely see Marco Silva again, he did really well at Hull, but they never looked like recovering from the pre-season shambles.

I was delighted Paul Clement and Big Sam struck a blow for British coaching. Now let's see if Sam can finish above West Ham - he'd like that! 

I'm sure there'll be change at The Hammers. Slavisa Jokanovic is well thought of there, but don't rule out Silva.

What can you say about Burnley and Bournemouth other than 'fantastic'. Sean Dyche and Eddie Howe have pulled off miracles, but if Howe spends again this summer it needs to be more wisely than he did last year. He's got away with a massive mis-spent splurge because he kept his team up.

Tony Pulis couldn't have done any more, but Mark Hughes certainly could. 'Stoke 9th', have underachieved.

Just a few thoughts before the last day, let me know yours.