The Season of 2013/14

Updated: May 14, 2014

The Barclays Premier League season 2013/2014 has had its ups and downs for every team involved although some were much bigger than others. We have had manager departures and various other problems off the field, every week has brought something new in this dramatic season which ended last weekend with Manchester City being crowned champions after comfortably beating West Ham 2-0 to secure their 2nd league title in 3 years. Manchester City only spent 15 days at the top of the league in total this season, with Arsenal being the highest at 128 and last year’s champions Manchester United just 2 days.

Many managers lost their job this season which could possibly be put down to the difficulty of staying up this year with many teams fighting till the last few games. The 3 teams that were relegated at the end of the season all made manager changes of some form within the season to their team’s detriment. The two teams that managed to stay in the Premiership despite manager changes Sunderland and Crystal Palace deserve credit for making the right decision for the team in terms of position at the end of the season. Palace finished in 11th and Sunderland in 14th after suggestions were being made that they would be relegated, great credit goes to Gus Poyet who worked hard with the team to keep them in the Premiership.

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Some really poor results cost David Moyes his job not even a year into his contract as United boss but it is fair to say that the beginning of his contract as their Manager started well, with their win in the Community Shield which seems such a long time ago, but back then he had won the first trophy in his path and sat top of the League after their 1st game at Swansea. As we all know their season declined, the catalyst to their season failure came when they played this year’s Premier League Champions in late September with a painful 4-1 defeat which seemed to be the start of their decline. United only took 5 points out of the possible 24 from the big clubs this season and now with Moyes gone the owners at United need to think hard about who they are going to name as manager for the 2014/2015 season onwards and which players deserve to wear the shirt after a disappointing season for the red half of Manchester.

Another season for Arsene Wenger’s men and once again they miss the chance to win the title, having been the club at the top of the league the longest this season you would have thought this was their year but once again they lost their way. They started their season well but in December they crumbled, with losses to Everton, Chelsea and the crushing 6-3 defeat by Man City. They returned back to the top with their win on Boxing Day over West Ham but this was another crucial day as they lost their best player of the season so far Aaron Ramsey for 3 months with a thigh injury. This was the start of Arsenal’s title chances slipping once again and having to make do with 4th place.

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Having the ‘Special One’ or as he wants to be known as now the ‘Happy One’ back at the Bridge was a big move for both club and manager and this appointment was a clear boost to Chelsea’s title chances. But having not lost any of the games against the Top 3 teams, the games against the lower teams in the league were the ones that cost Mourinho’s men. Defeats to Everton at the start of the season and then with the league entering its final stage defeats to the likes of Aston Villa, Crystal Palace away and Sunderland at home which ended Mourinho’s 77 games undefeated at Stamford Bridge proved the most damaging to the blues hopes of winning the league title this season.

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Liverpool’s ambitions at the start of the season were to clinch a Champions League spot, but they did more than that. Their start to the season wasn’t the best but they got the results they needed, it was the 2nd half of the season which really showed that Liverpool were in the hunt for the title this year with them going 14

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games undefeated winning 12 and drawing 2. Brendan Rogers’s team were at their best on the break, with all the pacey players they have, the 2 games against Arsenal and Tottenham were clear examples of this, but their team tactics and their inexperience showed against Chelsea and Crystal Palace.

The games against these 2 clubs turned out to be the beginning of the end for Liverpool’s title hopes. The Reds started the day against Chelsea 5 points clear at the top with 3 games to go. But thanks to a solid Chelsea defence and a costly mistake by veteran captain Steven Gerrard giving Demba Ba the chance he needed to put the Blues 1-0 up, this game looked like after all their fantastic results and great performances that they had run out of steam. Poor pass after poor pass made the supporters sitting in the Kop uneasy and with only minutes to go Liverpool put all but one upfront and this proved costly with Chelsea breaking and slotting another home to finish the game.

They continued to slip by letting a 3 goal lead escape their clutches in the last 11 minutes to draw 3-3 at Crystal Palace. Mistakes by their own players, especially in defence caused them to throw away the game and contributed to a missed opportunity title wise.

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Manchester City started the season with a wobble having lost games they shouldn’t have with the game against Aston Villa being one of them. But with the new man at the helm Manuel Pellegrini, his calm persona must have rubbed off on the players as they gained strength after strength and although Joe Hart’s performance was under scrutiny, with Costel Pantilimon having to take the reins for a while, they continued on with their good form until Hart came back and proved why he should still be England’s number 1 goal keeper. After the defeat against Liverpool in April many believed City had lost it, but with Chelsea giving them a hand beating Liverpool and Liverpool’s shock 3-3 draw at Crystal Palace, City went into the last 2 games, both at home, needing 2 wins to be certain of winning the league.

And they did just that, beating Aston Villa 4-0 and of course West Ham at the weekend to be crowned Champions.

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With the top spot almost changing weekly all year and the winner being decided on the final day, there’s nothing better than the excitement of watching the team’s in action in the Premiership, there has also been so many teams fighting for survival at the bottom not wanting to be in the position of being relegated, knowing how hard the Championship is. This season has been a roller-coaster for every football fan in the Premiership, from manager departures to bans and fines and some very weird refereeing decisions, I think that this has to be one of the best seasons so far in the Premiership for the sheer diversity this season has produced. I look forward to the start of the 2014/2015 season.

– Barclays Premier League Champions – Manchester City

– Top 4 – Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal

– Relegated to the Championship – Norwich, Fulham and Cardiff

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