You may remember that at the start of the season, a group of us (Martyn, Charlie, Josh and myself) tried to predict how the 2015/16 football season would finish in the top two tiers of English football. I collected it all together in a nice post, which you can read there to refresh your mind.
For those who can’t be bothered, essentially what we did was predict how the premier league and championship would finish, try and guess points required for champions/staying up, who was going to be top scorer and the winners of each of the cups.
Given that we are now over half-way through the season, I thought it was worth re-visiting how those predictions are coming along.
I won’t bore you with the ins and outs of all our tables, because at this point there really isn’t much point. If you want to have a look, then please use the link above.
The basics then: none of us had Leicester in the top four. Indeed, two of us tipped them to be relegated. Two of us thought Chelsea would defend their title, with the other two plumping for Manchester United. All four of us will be wrong on that! The highest Tottenham appeared was fifth, with the lowest eighth. At the other end, only half of us thought Aston Villa would be relegated (although it’s still not a foregone conclusion that they were right), and none of us had Newcastle in deep trouble. Interestingly, only one of us had Watford surviving.
The Championship is being led by Hull and Middlesbrough, and three of us have both in our top six, with one leaving Hull out. All of us thought Derby would get promoted, which could still happen despite their capitulation recently. Between the four of us, only one had Brighton in the play-offs. And even that was an adjustment after the start of the season! Charlton are currently second bottom yet none of us had them any lower than 20th. Half of us thought Preston would be relegated, and so would therefore be surprised to see them as high as 11th. Of course, it’s worth noting that anything in the Championship could happen, it’s such a great league.
Again, there isn’t a great deal of point to this as a lot of goals are still to be scored however it’s worth taking a look to see if any of our predictions are still in the running.
- Charlie: SERGIO AGUERO (14)
- Gareth: ROMELU LUKAKU (16)
- Josh: WAYNE ROONEY (7)
- Martyn: HARRY KANE (16)
- Actual top scorer: JAMIE VARDY (19)
Verdict: Three of us have a genuine shot at getting this prediction right. Lukaku and Kane are joint second on the list, with Aguero joint third. All are part of free-flowing squads that will score a lot of goals between now and the end of the season.
- Charlie: KIKE (3 – before leaving on 2nd Feb)
- Gareth: BOBBY ZAMORA (7)
- Josh: BENIK AFOBE (9 – before leaving on 10th Jan)
- Martyn: CHRIS MARTIN (9)
- Actual top scorer: ANDRE GRAY (18)
Verdict: Half of our players have left, the other two only have an outside chance of overhauling Gray. Not as good as our predictions for the Premier League!
The Outlandish Predictions:
Along with everything else, we placed a crazy prediction in the mix which was incredibly unlikely but would be wonderful if it did happen. This could be anything on or off the pitch. Do any of these still have a chance of happening?
Charlie: West Brom to go the season undefeated against the teams Charlie predicted would finish in the top four (Chelsea, Man City, Arsenal, Man United)
Reality: This prediction failed in the first week of the season, as the Albion lost 3-0 to Man City. They also lost to Chelsea and Manchester United, however did manage a victory over Arsenal and a draw against Chelsea.
Gareth: No English player would score 15 goals.
Reality: I didn’t factor in Jamie Vardy! Or Harry Kane… both have scored more than 15. Defoe on 10 and Barkley on 8 could also reach the 15 goal barrier.
Josh: Steve McClaren to be filmed with a Geordie accent.
Reality: Well, it still could happen. Whether it will or not is a different matter…
Martyn: Fastest red card to be in the first minute.
Reality: It hasn’t happened… so far. The fastest one to date is Alexsandar Mitrovic’s for Newcastle against Arsenal in the 16th minute.
Charlie: QPR, Burnley or Hull to go down.
Reality: Unlikely. There are 15 games left, which means a potential of 45 points. Rotherham, who currently occupy the final relegation spot, could therefore potentially finish the season on 71 points. Hull, the league leaders, have 60 points. Mathematically, this means that all three could still go down, but in reality Burnley and Hull won’t, QPR shouldn’t but are in more danger.
Gareth: Rotherham to get promoted.
Reality: Flip the logic from above, and you arrive at the very unlikely scenario that Rotherham will get promoted. Still possible, incredibly incredibly unlikely.
Josh: Tyler Walker to score 20 goals.
Reality: No goals so far in the league, move on…
Martyn: Lewis Dunk to score 10 goals.
Reality: Again, no goals in the league so far. Not going to happen.
And to finish this off, I take a look at how our cup predictions are coming along…
- Charlie: Manchester United (lost in the fourth round to Middlesbrough)
- Gareth: Chelsea (lost in the fourth round to Stoke)
- Josh: Liverpool (into the Final against Manchester City)
- Martyn: Stoke (lost in Semi-Final to Liverpool)
- Charlie: Arsenal (into fifth round against Hull)
- Gareth: West Ham (into fifth round against Blackburn)
- Josh: Manchester City (into fifth round against Chelsea)
- Martyn: Crystal Palace (into fifth round against Tottenham)
At the end of the season, I will round everything off and use our points system to determine the winner of the 2015-16 English football Prediction League.