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Anticipating Equality

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 16:  Manchester United celebrate winning the Barclays Premier League trophy after the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford on May 16, 2009 in Manchester, England.  (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)
will evansCorrespondent IJune 24, 2009

I know this is very premature, but looking ahead, I can't help but anticipate a much more equal premier league.

This season, Manchester United were never in much doubt of winning the league, with Liverpool being the only genuine contender. With all the stars seemingly attracted to Spain because of the weather, Real's wealth, or Barca's success, a lot of attention is being taken of the EPL.

However, I feel that next season is shaping up to be jaw dropping and salivating.

Lets start with the champions, Manchester United. Last season, they were never in much doubt of winning. Sure they had some hiccups near the end, but nothing too serious.

This summer, though, they have already lost their marquee player. Whether they will successfully replace Ronaldo or start playing in a manor that doesn't require a superstar, we can only speculate. They could be Barca when they lost Ronaldinho. They could be Arsenal when they lost Henry.

As it stands, United seems to have dropped a little bit talent wise.

Second place, Liverpool, on the other hand, are on the rise. They weren't quite at United's level last season because they didn't have the strength in depth, but they did have the most fearsome duo probably in world football: Torres and Gerrard.

Also, the acquisition on Glen Johnson and Alonso's break out season are seriously helping the Mersey side outfit.

However, they seem to be spending money on positions they don't need to. Their lack of strength in depth could be their downfall. I expect them and United to be very evenly matched.

Third place, Chelsea, is just as hard as United to predict because, honestly, nobody has any idea whats going to happen next season. New manager, new times. If they keep the same aging squad, they could finish fourth or even outside the top four.

However, if they freshen up as it seems Roman is hungry again, they could win the league if the right talent is bought. They are approaching United and Liverpool's level.

Finally, fourth place Arsenal seems about to embark on a meteoric rise. I'm not an Arsenal fan, but last season seemed like a massive disappointment. However, that's down to a few reasons.

One: Massive injuries.

Two: Massive lack of experience.

Three: Massively unbalanced squad. Overloaded attacking wise but defensively broke.

However, all of these problems look like they could be fixed next season, with all the young players having gained the experience this season, Wenger's more than likely signing of experienced players, and Wenger's signing of defenders.

He's already signed Vermaelen, and while nobody can account for injuries, one can only hope they will be alleviated slightly next season.

So there it is, the top four seem much, much more evenly matched. I know this is a very premature article, but these are just some thoughts I thought i would share. I could easily be proven wrong tomorrow, but as it stands, this seems likely.

On top of this, there is Tottenham with their golden leader Redknapp, Villa, and Everton with their best of the rest about to break the nest attitude, and Man City, with their mountain of billions. Enjoy.

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