English Premier League Power Poll, Week 15

Michael CummingsWorld Football Lead WriterDecember 5, 2012

English Premier League Power Poll, Week 15

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    After another high-scoring victory over the weekend, Manchester United remained atop both the Premier League table and this week's B/R English Premier League Power Poll.

    That much was simple. The rest was anything but.

    Swansea, Stoke and West Ham are flying high. Arsenal and Chelsea are reeling. Where did your team land this week?

    Keep reading to find out.

Methodology

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    For these rankings, the voters cast their ballots based on the "power rankings" style.

    That means voters ranked each club based on which teams they thought were the best, keeping in mind recent results and the league table.

    Nine B/R personalities voted in this week's poll. All the votes were counted on a points system. A first-place vote counted as 20 points, a second-place vote as 19 and so on.

     

    Explanation of terms

    Points: The total number of points the team received via our voters' rankings. A first-place vote counted as 20 points, a second-place vote as 19 and so on.

    Last-place votes: The number of last-place votes the team received from our voters.

    First-place votes: The number of first-place votes the team received from our voters.

    Last time: The team's ranking in the previous poll. Click here for the previous rankings.

    Table: The team's position in the English Premier League table, along with current points total. Click here for the full table.

    Results: The team's results since our last rankings.

    Fixtures: The team's upcoming matches.

Meet the Voters

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    Aliko Carter: B/R front-page editor. @AlikoCarter

    Michael Cummings: B/R world football lead writer and poll organizer. @MikeCummings37

    John Greely: B/R world football assistant editor. @johnwgreely

    Adam Hirshfield: B/R deputy editor. @ahirshfield

    Dan Levy: B/R national lead writer. @DanLevyThinks

    Karl Matchett: B/R world football full-time writer. @karlmatchett

    Sean Swaby: B/R featured columnist coordinator. @seanswaby

    Will Tidey: B/R world football lead writer and editor. @willtidey

    Sam Tighe: B/R world football tactical analyst. @stighefootball

Complete Rankings

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    1. Manchester United

    2. Tottenham Hotspur

    3. Manchester City

    4. Swansea City

    5. Everton

    6. Stoke City

    7. West Bromwich Albion

    8. West Ham United

    9. Chelsea

    10. Norwich City

    11. Liverpool

    12. Arsenal

    13. Newcastle United

    14. Aston Villa

    15. Wigan Athletic

    16. Fulham

    17. Southampton

    18. Sunderland

    19. Queens Park Rangers

    20. Reading

20. Reading

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    Points: 22

    Last-place votes: 4

    Last time: 19

    Table: 19th, 9 points

    Results: Lost 4-3 home to Man United

    Fixtures: At Southampton, Saturday

    Reading twice went ahead of Manchester United at the weekend, but came away with nothing from the match. This weekend’s trip to Southampton could feature plenty more goals. The teams have combined to concede 59 times already this season.

    Sam: Three losses in a row, eight goals conceded. Panic stations?

19. Queens Park Rangers

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    Points: 25

    Last-place votes: 4

    Last time: 20

    Table: 20th, 6 points

    Results: Drew 1-1 home to Villa

    Fixtures: At Wigan, Saturday

    The good news is that QPR are unbeaten in their last two matches. The bad news is that both of those matches ended in draws and Rangers still haven’t won a single game this season.

    Dan: They can't even get a lead, let alone win a match.

18. Sunderland

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    Points: 37

    Last time: 18

    Table: 17th, 13 points

    Results: Lost 2-1 at Norwich

    Fixtures: Home to Chelsea, Saturday

    Sunderland keep sliding deeper into the relegation mess. With a trip to Chelsea approaching, the Black Cats sit only one point above the drop zone.

    Sam: The hapless Black Cats have a plethora of problems, and Martin O'Neill probably can't wait for January 31 to roll around so he can start shopping.

17. Southampton

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    Points: 49

    Last time: 16

    Table: 18th, 12 points

    Results: Lost 1-0 at Liverpool

    Fixtures: Home to Reading, Saturday

    Rickie Lambert is tied for eighth in the league with six goals this season.

16. Fulham

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    Points: 50

    Last time: 10

    Table: 13th, 17 points

    Results: Lost 3-0 home to Spurs

    Fixtures: Home to Newcastle, Monday

    It’s all gone a bit wrong for Fulham, who are winless in seven matches. Most recently, the Cottagers have lost three of four.

15. Wigan Athletic

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    Points: 53

    Last time: 15

    Table: 16th, 14 points

    Results: Lost 3-0 at Newcastle

    Fixtures: Home to QPR, Saturday

    Wigan have lost four out of five. A home date with QPR this weekend might just cure some of the ills facing Roberto Martinez’s team.

14. Aston Villa

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    Points: 69

    Last time: 14

    Table: 15th, 14 points

    Results: Drew 1-1 at QPR

    Fixtures: Home to Stoke

    Villa have not lost since that ugly 5-0 drubbing at Man City last month. First-year manager Paul Lambert says he’s happy with his team’s progress (via ESPN FC).

    Sam: Unbeaten in three, a successful rendition of three at the back and into 15th place. All without Darren Bent.

13. Newcastle United

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    Points: 76

    Last time: 17

    Table: 14th, 17 points

    Results: Won 3-0 home to Wigan

    Fixtures: At Fulham, Monday

    Newcastle have picked up four points in two Monday night matches this season. Another awaits this week.

12. Arsenal

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    Points: 89

    Last-place votes: 1

    Last time: 7

    Table: 10th, 21 points

    Results: Lost 2-0 home to Swansea

    Fixtures: Home to West Brom, Saturday

    No need to remind, but here goes. This is Arsenal’s worst start to a league season under Arsene Wenger—their worst league start, in fact, since 1994. Yeah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was an infant then.

    Dan: Arsenal are in 10th in the standings? That's almost too hard to understand, which, in a way, makes it so understandable.

    Sam: Dropping like a stone, Arsene Wenger needs to hit the laboratory and come back with a seriously impressive formula to arrest this slump.

    Sean: Getting into the Champions League isn't as simple as closing your eyes and tapping your heels together. 

    Will: Arsenal are planning for their long-term future, by which time they'll be mid-table fodder unless they make some moves in the transfer market.

11. Liverpool

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    Points: 102

    Last time: 12 (tie)

    Table: 11th, 19 points

    Results: Won 1-0 home to Southampton

    Fixtures: At West Ham, Sunday

    Here’s a quirky question that illustrates this wacky season. Will Liverpool be the underdogs for this weekend’s trip to West Ham?

10. Norwich City

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    Points: 103

    Last time: 11

    Table: 12th, 19 points

    Results: Won 2-1 home to Sunderland

    Fixtures: At Swansea, Saturday

    Norwich are unbeaten in eight matches, during which time they’ve won four times. This after a winless seven-game stretch to start the season.

    At this rate, they too will overtake Arsenal soon.

    Will: Chris Hughton is the mastermind of the form defence in the Premier League right now.

9. Chelsea

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    Points: 111

    Last time: 6

    Table: 3rd, 26 points

    Results: Lost 3-1 at West Ham

    Fixtures: At Sunderland, Saturday

    The winless run now stands at seven matches. Rafa Benitez still hasn’t won a league match. Would you feel comfortable if you were him?

    Sean: This Rafa-Abromovich marriage will not end well. Or it will end hilariously, depending on who you support. 

    Dan: Which is worse, losing 1-0 to Stoke to drop out of the top four or losing 3-1 to West Ham with a manager everyone hates? Advantage, West Brom, for now.

8. West Ham United

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    Points: 113

    Last time: 12 (tie)

    Table: 8th, 22 points

    Results: Won 3-1 home to Chelsea

    Fixtures: Home to Liverpool, Sunday

    West Ham recorded a famous and deserved victory at home to Chelsea last weekend and now are eighth in the table. Sam Allardyce’s Hammers have not been outside the top half all season.

    Will: Stood up to Chelsea and steamrolled them in the second half at Upton Park. Diame is a beast.

7. West Bromwich Albion

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    Points: 114

    Last time: 4

    Table: 5th, 26 points

    Results: Lost 1-0 home to Stoke

    Fixtures: At Arsenal, Saturday

    Uh oh. West Brom have lost two in a row. Is it all over?

    In more encouraging news, the Baggies get to play Arsenal next.

6. Stoke City

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    Points: 121

    Last time: 9

    Table: 9th, 22 points

    Results: Won 1-0 at West Brom.

    Fixtures: At Villa, Saturday

    Flying high!

    The Potters are ninth in the table—above Arsenal—after winning four of five. Heady days indeed.

5. Everton

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    Points: 134

    Last time: 5

    Table: 6th, 23 points

    Results: Drew 1-1 at Man City

    Fixtures: Home to Spurs, Sunday

    While generally playing well this season, Everton have drawn a league-high eight times in 15 matches. As one observer put it (via Twitter), watching the Toffees is like dating a beautiful person who is saving it for his or her wedding day.

    Dan: I've been saying "get to January" for months. They're almost there, and three teams above them are vulnerable. This could be a special year if they can have their traditional second half.

4. Swansea City

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    Points: 144

    First-place votes: 1

    Last time: 8

    Table: 7th, 23 points

    Results: Won 2-0 at Arsenal

    Fixtures: Home to Norwich, Saturday

    After beating Arsenal behind Michu’s stunning late brace, Swansea are unbeaten in six matches. Up next is a showdown with another of the league’s hottest teams…Norwich.

    How about that?

    Will: Michu, coolest player in the Premier League this season.

    Sean: Swans out "Arsenaled" Arsenal. No major feat these days, though.

3. Manchester City

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    Points: 155

    Last time: 2

    Table: 2nd, 33 points

    Results: Drew 1-1 home to Everton

    Fixtures: Home to Man United, Sunday

    City remain the league’s only unbeaten team, but they’ll have to beat rivals Manchester United this weekend to climb back to the top of the table.

    Dan: A loss this week could put the Premiership out of reach before the New Year? Something better happen soon.

    Adam: How is it that they haven't lost all season long, yet they're three points behind their Mancunian neighbors?!?! Oh, right...you can draw in soccer.

2. Tottenham Hotspur

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    Points: 160

    Last time: 3

    Table: 4th, 26 points

    Results: Won 3-0 at Fulham

    Fixtures: At Everton, Sunday

    Lose three. Win three. Play poorly. Look like world beaters.

    Ladies and gentlemen: Your 2012-13 Tottenham Hotspur.

    Sam: Three wins in a row for AVB, but it'll probably be followed by three losses. Story of their season.

    Will: AVB is proving to be more than a short man in a sharp suit of late.

1. Manchester United

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    Points: 173

    First-place votes: 8

    Weeks at No. 1: 2

    Last time: 1

    Table: 1st, 36 points

    Results: Won 4-3 at Reading

    Fixtures: At Man City, Sunday

    United could allow three goals every week and score four to win anyway. Oh, uh, that just happened, eh?

    Until further notice, let’s assume something similar will happen every week.

    Will: United are the big kid who gave you a headstart in the playground. If they could defend, they'd be frightening.

    Dan: They should just give up defending altogether and start 10 attacking field players. Oh, that's what they're doing? Very well then.

    Adam: Good God, their defense is terrible. But good God, their offense is soooo good.