At the start of the season, the We Only Sing When We’re Winning team got together to go watch the first match of the 2015-16 English Football season. Brighton beat Nottingham Forest 1-0, in a match none of us remember for quality!
On the long drive back to Nottingham the next day, we decided to pass the time by predicting which teams would win the domestic trophies, and how the Premier League and Championship would finish. We came up with a scoring system, and I kept a record of all our data.
It’s now time to start compiling the results – and we’ll start with the easiest, the cups. The scoring system for this was simple: 5 points for correctly guessing a winner, 2 if they were runners-up and 0 if they failed to make the final. Any changes in predictions would be an automatic loss of two points.
Firstly, some introductions:
Photo credits: ©Emma Still
Now, let’s deal with each of our blogger’s predictions in turn, starting with Charlie.
Charlie predicted that:
- Manchester United would win the Capital One Cup
- Arsenal would defend their FA Cup
Manchester United entered the League Cup in the third round, where they defeated Ipswich at Old Trafford. However, the fourth round was as far as they got, suffering a shock penalty shoot-out loss when hosting Middlesbrough.
Charlie must have felt confident about his FA Cup prediction. Arsenal were two-time defending champions when they entered the third round draw, and victories over Sunderland, Burnley and Hull gave them a quarter-final match up against Watford. Despite being at home, it was one hurdle too many for the Gunners.
As neither of his sides reached the final, Charlie gets 0 points for the cups.
Gareth predicted that:
- Chelsea would win the Capital One Cup
- West Ham would win the FA Cup
Chelsea only managed one win in the League Cup. An away victory against Walsall was followed up by an exit at the hands of Stoke in the next round, on penalties. Entering at the third round, they exited in the fourth.
The brave selection of West Ham was not as inspired as I hoped. It was looking good when the Hammers beat Wolves, Liverpool (after extra time in the replay) and Blackburn to reach the quarter-finals. Drawn against an out-of-form Manchester United, the semi’s beckoned. However, United found their touch and dumped West Ham out of the tournament.
Gareth gets 0 points for the cups.
Josh predicted that:
- Liverpool would win the Capital One Cup
- Manchester City would win the FA Cup
Josh was an inspired Willy Caballero away from getting all five points on offer for the League Cup. After a run to the final knocking out Carlisle, Bournemouth, Southampton and Stoke, Liverpool scored an 83rd minute equaliser to take the final into extra time. However, three penalty misses ended their chances of glory.
Manchester City may have won the League Cup, however they weren’t able to repeat this success in premiere domestic cup. Fielding youngsters, as they had bigger priorities, they lost 5-1 to Chelsea in the fifth round. The only highlights were victories over relegated clubs Norwich and Aston Villa.
Liverpool’s final appearance means Josh gets 2 points for the cups.
Martyn predicted that:
- Stoke would win the Capital One Cup
- Crystal Palace would win the FA Cup
All in all Martyn had a pretty good year with cup predictions. Stoke were a penalty away from reaching the League Cup final, after eliminating Luton, Fulham, Chelsea and Sheffield Wednesday. The Potters won the second leg of their semi against Liverpool, however it was only enough to play extra time, and eventually penalties.
Crystal Palace went very close to producing a surprising FA Cup winner. Wins over Southampton, Stoke, Tottenham Hotspur, Reading and Watford propelled them into the final. At Wembley, they took the lead against Manchester United in the 78th minute. However, they couldn’t hold on, and Jesse Lingard’s 110th minute volley finally put the Eagles to bed.
This surprise finalist means Martyn gets 2 points for the cups.
The first set of results are in, leaving the table as follows: