Predicting the Champions, Runners-Up & Relegated Teams from Top 5 Europe Leagues
The English Premier League has already begun, with last season’s top-four all getting off to winning starts, as per Statto. The French Ligue 1 has also started, and the defending champions Paris Saint-Germain are in the top-three after two games.
However, the German Bundesliga, Spanish La Liga and Italian Serie A have yet to begin, but what teams from each top division could win the title? And who will be in greatest danger of going down?
English Premier League
Runners-up: Manchester City
Relegated: West Bromwich Albion, Burnley, Leicester City
Despite finishing third, Chelsea had the best defence in the Premier League last season, and manager Jose Mourinho has now signed one of the world’s best playmakers in Cesc Fabregas and best strikers in Diego Costa, as per Transfermarkt, which makes the Blues the team to beat.
Manchester City are still title contenders, but they lost twice to Chelsea last season and haven’t really improved their first-team, which may see them will fall short.
As for the relegation battle, West Bromwich Albion could struggle with manager Alan Irvine in charge due to their lack of attacking options, while newly-promoted Burnley and Leicester City simply don’t have the squad depth to stay in the division.
Spanish La Liga
Champions: Real Madrid
Relegated: Eibar, Cordoba, Deportivo La Coruna
As reported by Alberto Navarro of Real Madrid's official news website, Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti believes the Champions League winners now have "a stronger squad than last year," following the summer acquisitions of Toni Kroos and James Rodriguez, and with fierce rivals Barcelona appointing a new manager and bringing in a host of new players, the Catalan giants may struggle to bed in their new stars in time to capture the title back.
Deportivo La Coruna have suffered two relegations from La Liga in the last four seasons, and the newly-promoted outfit are tipped to go back down again by Oddschecker as a result.
Eibar and Cordoba are also both fresh from the Spanish second tier, but don’t possess enough strength in depth to stave off relegation.
Italian Serie A
Champions: AS Roma
Relegated: Cesena, Empoli, Sassuolo
Despite Juventus winning the Serie A title last season, manager Antonio Conte recently resigned from his position, suggesting he may struggle to keep the side's recent success going, as per BBC Sport. AS Roma will be hoping to take advantage, following on from last campaign where they boasted the second-best defence in the league.
Cesena look destined for the drop as they’ve had financial problems, and have made wholesale changes to the first-team, which will make it hard for the side to settle.
Empoli have spent a total of six seasons in Serie A in the last 15 years, and had to wait six years for a return to the top-flight this summer. They’ve also made a host of new signings that could see them struggle to gel in a difficult league.
Sassuolo are another team who have been busy in the market this summer, but they scraped survival by just two points in 2013/14, finishing with a meagre tally of 34 points from 38 games. It’s surely another campaign of struggle this time around.
Champions: Bayern Munich
Runners-up: Borussia Dortmund
Relegated: SC Paderborn, SC Freiburg, FC Koln
Bayern Munich are considerably ahead of their competition in the German Bundesliga, while Borussia Dortmund, who are in Bayern’s shadow at present, are a lot stronger than the rest of the league.
For relegation, SC Freiburg have been in the Bundesliga since 2009, but last season saw them struggle to remain in the division. They’ve also sold some talented players, while making a lot of new additions that could see the balance of the team suffer.
SC Paderborn are new to the German top flight, and have a very weak squad unlikely to keep them in the Bundesliga over the course of a 34-game campaign.
FC Koln have been a yo-yo team in the top two tiers, but they are back in the Bundesliga this season. Since 2001, the German outfit have suffered four relegations to the second tier and are among the favourites to go down in 2014/15, as per Oddschecker, in their first campaign back.
French Ligue 1
Champions: Paris Saint-Germain
Runners-up: AS Monaco
Relegated: Evian, Lens, Caen
Paris Saint-Germain remain the strongest team in Ligue 1, and their title rivals AS Monaco, who last season finished runners-up, have lost their two opening games. They should still, however, finish second this season.
Evian look destined for the drop after also losing their opening two matches, conceding nine goals in the process. Lens have also failed to pick up a point so far from a possible six, failing to score against Nantes or Guingamp. They are newly-promoted, but could be having a short stay unless their form improves.
As for Caen, they’ve suffered three relegations in the last decade, spending a maximum of two seasons in Ligue 1 before dropping down a league. The side have three points from their two games so far, but they’re expected to struggle on their return to Ligue 1 in 2014/15.