The 2017/18 Premier League season is less than two months away – with transfers being the first order of business before the action kicks off yet again.
Despite the window not officially opening until the 1st of July, clubs have already spent almost £100m on new recruits.
With Sunderland, Middlesbrough, and Hull relegated to the Championship, they will trade places in the league with Newcastle, Brighton, and Huddersfield.
As the new season rolls around, there are plenty of questions to be answered.
Can the newly promoted clubs survive their first season back in England’s top flight or will they succumb to relegation?
Can Chelsea retain their Premier League crown after lifting the trophy in such devastating fashion?
Will Manchester City’s spending deliver a trophy in Pep Guardiola’s second season at the club?
Or can Manchester United return to the top of the English game?
Using the power of Football Manager 17, we attempt to predict how the 17/18 Premier League season will play out…
Click next to find out where your side finished!
20th – Huddersfield – 32 points
Huddersfield promotion to the Premier League was a deserved fairytale ending to an excellent season in the Championship. David Wagner led his side to the play-off final where they beat Reading on penalties to send the Terriers to the top flight. Despite winning what was labelled the richest game in football, Huddersfield made just one signing – Dimitar Berbatov on a free transfer. The bookmakers made them favourites for relegation which ultimately proved to be right.
19th – Burnley – 32 points
Joining Huddersfield in the Championship would be Burnley – whose spell back in the Premier League lasted just one season. Sean Dyche was sacked before the season got underway, despite securing Burnley a 16th placed finish. He was replaced by former Leeds manager Garry Monk but the ex-Swansea boss could not save them from relegation.
18th – West Brom – 35 points
Surprisingly, given their 10th placed finish under Tony Pulis last year, West Brom were relegated and sent back to the Championship for the first time in seven years. The Welshman resigned from his role at the club in January and the Baggies replaced him with Gerardo Martino, despite his inexperience in England. They paid the price for the wrong appointment and enter the Championship looking for a new manager again.
17th – Watford – 38 points
Watford narrowly avoided the drop by just three points. New manager, Marco Silva, was unable to guide Hull City to safety after taking over from Mike Phelan but managed to keep the Hornets in the top flight. There was no improvement on the 17th placed finish from last season but the Spaniard was promised an improved transfer budget for next season to improve the side’s fortunes.
16th – Crystal Palace – 38 points
After Sam Allardyce had left the club, Crystal Palace appointed former Leicester manager, Claudio Ranieri – a Premier League winner with the Foxes. The Eagles managed to retain the bulk of their squad giving the Italian boss a strong team to work with. They narrowly managed to avoid relegation, but the former Chelsea boss was given assurances that he would have another season to turn it around.
15th – Brighton – 40 points
40 points is the magic total for Premier League sides looking to avoid relegation, a feat which was achieved by Brighton and Hove Albion in their first season. Chris Houghton led the Seasiders to automatic promotion but even more impressively, guided them to safety. He made some astute signings including Leigh Griffiths from Celtic and Robbie Brady from Burnley who were instrumental in their debut season.
14th – Swansea – 40 points
Swansea also managed to reach the magical 40 point tally under Paul Clement. The Swans managed to keep hold of star man Glyfi Sigurdsson for the new season and the Icelandic midfielder was their top player yet again. Clement also brought Mario Balotelli in on loan and the Italian striker netted 8 goals in 12 appearances after joining in January which boosted his side’s chances of survival.
13th – Everton – 43 points
Losing Romelu Lukaku proved to be a severe blow to Everton’s European ambitions as the Toffees could only manage a 13th placed finish. Lukaku’s replacement, Marcel Sabitzer, proved to be a poor piece of business – managing just three goals in 38 appearances. Their poor results cost Ronald Koeman his job with Aitor Karanka set to take the reins at Goodison Park next year.
12th – Stoke – 49 points
Stoke finished 12th with 49 points despite being stuck in a relegation battle early in the season. Mark Hughes was given his marching orders in December with the Potters on the verge of the drop zone. He was replaced by former Swansea manager, Francesco Guidolin, on a short-term contract and he quickly turned the club’s fortunes around. It wasn’t enough to keep him at the club with former PSG manager Laurent Blanc signing a four-year deal to take over.
11th – Newcastle – 49 points
Newcastle enjoyed a strong season as they returned to the Premier League following a year in the Championship. Rafael Benitez guided them to the title and almost broke into the top ten following their return to the top flight. Benitez spent £43m on new recruits including Josh Sims from Southampton and also brought Loic Remy back to the club. The French striker ended the season as the club’s top goal scorer.
10th – Bournemouth – 49 points
Eddie Howe continued his impressive record at Bournemouth and guided them to their highest ever finish in the Premier League despite spending only £4m in the transfer window on Middlesbrough’s Ben Gibson. The Cherries finished in the top ten on goal difference ahead of Newcastle but speculation has mounted that Howe will leave his role to take the now vacant England job.
9th – Southampton – 53 points
Our simulation had started before Southampton had appointed Mauricio Pellegrino meaning the Saints opted for Zenit St. Petersburg manager, Mircea Lucesca. The Romanian’s appointment was met with a lot of criticism but he managed to lead the side to a ninth place finish. Despite keeping Virgil Van Dijk at the club, they lost James Ward-Prowse to Liverpool. They spent almost £60m on new recruits meaning their position in the table was seen as an underachievement.
8th – West Ham – 53 points
West Ham improved on their 11th place finish last season but narrowly missed out on a place in the Europa League. Slaven Bilic was under pressure following last year’s struggles but the Croatian kept his job. The Hammers recruited the likes of Troy Deeney and Jonny Evans to strengthen their squad, spending £38m on new transfers. They missed out on European football as they were beaten by Leicester on the final day of the season.
7th – Leicester – 55 points
Last year’s relegation battle was quickly forgotten about as Leicester secured another season in Europe on the final day of the Premier League campaign. The Foxes’ faith in Craig Shakespeare was rewarded as the Englishman returned Leicester to the right half of the table despite making just two signings in Adnan Januzaj and Ante Coric. They will enter the qualifying rounds of the Europa League.
6th – Chelsea – 62 points
According to our simulation, Chelsea will not be able to retain their Premier League and even missed out on a top-four finish. Diego Costa left the club for Manchester United to reunite with Jose Mourinho and the Blues failed to replace their star forward instead spending £65m on two left backs in Jose Gaya and Bernat. Antonio Conte’s side struggled in the league but managed to lift the FA Cup.
5th – Liverpool – 65 points
Liverpool’s return to the top four of the Premier League was short-lived as Jurgen Klopp’s men could only secure a fifth place finish and Europa League football for next season. The German’s squad was depleted in the transfer window with Roberto Firmino and Emre Can joining Bayern Munich and Real Madrid respectively. The loss of two key players seriously harmed their chances of success as well as losing Sadio Mane to a season-long injury.
4th – Manchester City – 74 points
Guardiola’s second season at Manchester City did not go to plan. The Spaniard broke the Premier League record for spending in a transfer window after adding Antoine Griezmann to his squad late in the summer window. The Citizens could only manage a fourth place finish with Manchester United finishing above them on goal difference. The ex-Barcelona manager did lift the EFL Cup after beating Sunderland at Wembley.
3rd – Manchester United – 74 points
United missed out on the top four last season but secured Champions League football in Mourinho’s second season to become the first manager since Sir Alex Ferguson left to do so in successive seasons. The Portuguese invested heavily in his squad to sign Radja Nainggolan from Roma, Aymeric Laporte from Bilbao and Costa from Chelsea but ultimately fell way short in the title race. The Red Devils also lost the FA Cup final to Chelsea.
2nd – Tottenham – 80 points
Tottenham pushed Chelsea all the way last season in the race for the title but could not catch their London rivals. They played some excellent football and have high hopes going into next season. Our simulation predicts the Lilywhites will finish second in the race for the title again. Mauricio Pochettino could not deliver the title but did lead Tottenham to glory in Europe as Spurs lifted the Champions League trophy for the first time in their history.
1st – Arsenal – 92 points
Arsenal missing out on Champions League football led to a majority of fans calling for Arsene Wenger’s head. However, the Frenchman was given a new two-year contract at the Emirates. The Gunners signed Mauro Icardi from Inter Milan and the Argentine finished as the league’s top scorer. The Arsenal board’s faith was quickly repaid with Wenger delivering his fourth Premier League title at the club.
Who do you think will win the Premier League next season? Comment below!