The Premier League season has come to a close, but has left us with many intriguing storyline developments for next year.
And with that, the 38 game Premier League season came to a close, and while much of the headlines on the final day were on the race for the Champions League, there was much more going on within the final weeks to signal an exciting season to come. The obvious major announcement was that of Sir Alex Fergusons’ retirement at the end of the season. Having been at the helm of Manchester United for so long, accumulating many trophies and building superstars year by year, it will certainly be a loss for the Premier League. However, many rival clubs will surely see this as a chance to reinstate their own dominance, as they look to capitalize on incoming manager David Moyes’ inexperience in challenging for a title. Three out of the top four clubs this year will have new managers come next year, and that could change the playing field altogether. Manchester City perhaps rather harshly dismissed Roberto Mancini from his duties and Chelsea’s intern manager Rafael Benitez was doomed from the beginning, despite bringing in another European trophy to the Blue’s cabinet. With Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho expected to fill in the vacancies respectively, next year promises to be a period of transition for many.
Arsene Wenger will become the longest serving manager in the league, and with Arsenal managing a brilliant end to the season to secure a Champions League spot (Thank God!), it will surely be a chance for them to push onto a title challenging position next year. Having seen what the team is capable of producing, a few noteworthy additions should see the squad in pole position next year, with an experienced manager at the helm.
Heartache for Spurs once again as they miss out on the Champions League for the second straight year and the attention will now focus on the future of star winger Gareth Bale. Bale has been in a league of his own this year, with multiple accolades to show for his efforts, but he wants to be competing on Europe’s biggest stage. Rumors have it that he will sign on for an extra year, with a £50 million release clause in his contract should he wish to leave the club.
Retirement seemed to be the theme this year, as football paid tribute to retiring stars Jamie Carragher, Paul Scholes (for the second time), Michael Owen, and David Beckham. For Liverpool, this leaves a whole in the back needing to be plugged with Martin Skrtel’s indifferent form, and for United, the need for a central midfielder becomes even more urgent.
Question marks also surround the future of England star Wayne Rooney. He has reportedly sent in a transfer request which has sparked interest from many rival teams, including Arsenal and Chelsea. With his recent admission that he would prefer playing in the striker role currently occupied by Van Persie, Rooney could very well be on the move in the near future.
Even though the season has barely concluded, the story lines for next season have already begun to form, as the battle for supremacy in the Premier League begins a new era. Only time will tell as to how it will all play out. August, we await you impatiently.
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