The hectic festive schedule does not give any respite the EPL clubs even after the turn of the year and the expectations of the fans only increases the pressure on the manager and the franchise. However, a New Year and a fresh round of fixtures gives fans some hope of an improved performance in the second half of the season.
The New Year is that time of the year where resolutions- no matter how minor- will be ringing in everybody’s mind. Here is a piece on the New Year Resolutions of top clubs in the Premier League:
1. Arsenal – Open their wallet in January:
After a 3rd place finish in the previous season, manager Arsene Wenger did not do too much business in the summer transfer window and almost paid the price for it in the midst of the festive period. The long list of players who are sidelined due to injuries has hampered the progress of the club even as they enter the New Year at the top of the pile. It will be interesting to see if the club and the manager look into the January transfer window to try and increase the depth in the squad and as an insurance to injuries.
2. Manchester City – Worship Pep Guardiola
The biggest news for the Citizens recently has been the talk about Pep Guardiola reportedly accepting terms with the Etihad franchise for a move this summer. Guardiola has expressed that he will not stay in Germany after the summer and if rumors are to be believed, Pellegrini will face the axe irrespective of the results this season. Pep will surely love the unlimited supply of funds and will hope to create a dynasty in the country with one of the top clubs. City fans will surely be hoping and praying that the Spanish maestro will not snub their club for a better offer.
3. Manchester United – Provide some entertainment
Louis van Gaal has been under tremendous pressure in recent times with United falling to a 7 match winless streak with no win in December. If results are a problem in itself, the Old Trafford club have been accused of playing boring football and rightly so. They lack any kind of intensity on the field and have been wasteful in the final third. They will have to improve on their recent performances and should try and play some entertaining football which seems to be the only way for Van Gaal to win over the fans and the pundits in this demanding league.
4. Liverpool – Hand Sturridge consecutive starts
The biggest problem for the Reds in recent times has been goal scoring. They have created plenty of chances this season but have lacked the finishing touch that is needed to see teams off. But the fans were given some good news by star striker Daniel Sturridge who is now fit to face the first fixture in the New Year. However, the Anfield faithful will be aware of the pitfalls of having their star striker back, Sturridge has not been able to keep himself fit for a run of games and having him start two consecutive matches without facing an injury will be high in the priorities at the club.
5. Chelsea – Move on from Mourinho:
After sacking the most successful manager in their history, Chelsea who are languishing in the bottom of the table are just three points off the drop zone. Jose Mourinho had a tough time this season losing 9 games in 16 and was replaced by Guus Hiddink who has taken 5 points from his first 3 games. However, the atmosphere at the Bridge tells a different story. Even in dismal form, the Chelsea fans know that they have let go the only person who could have taken them out of trouble. But it is time for them to let go of the Portuguese and start concentrating on the season ahead.
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