A Look into how Premier League has become the most watched league in the world

The 25th season of the Premier League is set to kick-off in 8 days time. In it’s 24 seasons till date the Premier League has turned itself into one of the most exciting leagues in the World.

Leicester City’s Premier League title & Aston Villa’s relegation last season proves that unlike many of the other leagues across Europe were two or three clubs are too dominant for the rest, The Premier League is competitive from the 1st placed team to the 20th. The 25th anniversary of the league promises to be special one and here we look at some of the greatest moments over the past 24 years.

Premier League @ 25 – All You Need to Know

1 to 5 Stats & Facts

Ryan Giggs best players Premier League

Ryan Giggs (Pic Cou: Skysports.com)

1. Manchester United have the most league titles to their name with 13. Chelsea comes in second place with 4 while Arsenal with 3 Premier League titles round off the top three.

2. All of United 13 league titles have come under Sir Alex Ferguson who incidentally is the most successful manager in the Premier League Era.

3. Alex Ferguson also holds the record for the longest managerial reign in Premier League (1992 to 2013 – Manchester United).

4. Alan Shearer was one of the most accomplished players in the Premier League. Shearer despite retiring in 2006 still holds the Premier League record for most goals scored with 260. Some of the other Premier League records he holds include the most hat-tricks overall (11) & most hat-tricks in a single season (5).

5. Ledley King who spend his entire career with Tottenham holds the record for the fastest goal in the Premier League. The goal came after just 10 seconds in a game against Bradford City in December 2009.

6-10 Stats and Facts

6. United Legend Ryan Giggs holds the record for the most appearances in the Premier League with 672 & featured in 22 of the 24 Premier League seasons till date. The United legend also holds the record for the most number of assists in the league with 162.

7. Mathew Briggs of Fulham is the youngest player to make his debut in the league. He made his debut in 2007 against Middlesbrough when he was just 16 years and 65 days old.

8. John Burridge who began his senior career in 1969 with Workington A.F.C holds the record for the oldest player to make his debut in the league. At 43 years, 4 months & 26 days he made his debut for Manchester City in the Premier League against QPR.

9. Arsenal are the only team in the Premier League era to go an entire season undefeated. They achieved his feat in 2003/04, winning 26 and drawing 12 of their 38 games thus earning the nickname “Invincibles”

10. Only 7 clubs have featured in all 24 seasons of the Premier League – Arsenal, Aston Villa, Chelsea, Everton, Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham. Aston Villa however were relegated last season shortening this list to just 6 clubs.

11-15 Stats & Facts

Peter Schmeichel best goalkeepersPremier League

Peter Schmeichel (Pic Cou: Telegraph.co.uk)

11. Frank Lampard is the highest scoring midfielder in the league’s history with 177 goals. Fellow Chelsea legend John Terry is the highest scoring defender with 40 goals.

12. Chelsea have arguably been the most consistent team since the turn of the millennium. The London Blue’s holds the record for the most number of points accumulated in a single season with 95 coming in the 2004/05 season.

13. Arsenal holds the record for the most number of consecutive wins in the league with 14. 13 of these wins came towards the end of the 2001/02 season & the 14th came in the 2002/03 season. The Gunner’s also holds the record for the longest undefeated streak with 49 games spanning across the 2002/03, 2003/04 & 2004/05 seasons.

14. Fernando Torres’ 50 million pounds switch from Liverpool to Chelsea in 2011 remains the highest transfer between Premier League clubs.

15. Only six teams have won the Premier League title in it’s history – Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Manchester City, Blackburn & Leicester City.

16-20 Stats and Facts

16. In it’s 24 year history only five times have the goalkeepers scored for their team. The first player to do so was Peter Schmeichel for Aston Villa in a game against Everton in October 2001.

17. The record for the most number of wins in a season goes to Chelsea with 29. The Blues have done it on two occasions – 2004/05 & 2005/06. The least number of wins in a season goes to Derby County who could only manage one in the 2007/08 season.

18. Manchester United holds the record for the most number of overall wins in the league’s history with 586. The record for the most number of overall losses (333) and draws (275) belongs to Aston Villa.

19. The highest scoring game in the league’s history came in the 2007/08 season. Portsmouth got the better of Reading and the final scoreline read 7-4.

20. Manchester United are the highest scoring team in the league’s history with 1802 goals. Surprisingly it’s Tottenham who have conceded the most with 1205 goals.

21-28 Stats & Facts

Alan Shearer New England best player

Alan Shearer (Pic Cou: Skysports.com)

21. The record for the most number goals by a team in a season goes to Chelsea who slotted in 103 in the 2009/10 season. Derby County are the least scoring team in a season with just 20 in the 2007/08 campaign.

22. Liverpool’s latest recruit Sadio Mane holds the record for the fastest hat-trick in the league’s history. His three goals for Southampton came in the space of just 2 minutes & 56 seconds against Villa in May,2015.

23. Brad Fridel holds the record for the most number of consecutive appearances in the league with 310 game between 2004 & 2012.

24. The Premier League had 22 teams till the 1994/95 season but since the 1995/96 it has just been the 20 top teams.

25. Jamie Vardy of Leicester City holds the record for the most number of consecutive league games with a goal. He scored in 11 consecutive games for the Foxes last season.

26. Alan Shearer & Andrew Cole with 34 goals in a single season are the joint record holders in a 42 game Premier League season.

27. In a 38 game Premier League season three players jointly hold the record for the most goals in a single season (31) – Alan Shearer (1995/96), Cristiano Ronaldo (2007/08) & Luis Suarez (2013/14).

28. The first ever goal scored in the Premier League was by Brian Deane for Sheffield United. It came against Manchester United in the opening game of the 1992/93 season. Sheffield United would go onto win the game 2-1 with Deane also scoring the second.

The Best Premier League Match @ 24

To this date the Premier League has seen a total of 9240 games being contested between 47 different clubs. We could easily pick a 100 great games in the league’s history but we have taken it upon our self’s to narrow down the list to just 3. Feel free to disagree with us and comment your top 3 games below.

3. Manchester City vs QPR – (3-2) – (2011/12)

Manchester City's 3-2 over QPR

Manchester City – Champions – 2011/12 (Pic Cou: Dailymail.co.uk)

Backdrop

Manchester City were coming into the final game of the season leading the Premier League table by GD. The Citizens needed a win against QPR on the final day or United lose to Sunderland in their final game. A draw would have also been enough for the Citizens to win their maiden title if United drew with the Black Cats.

QPR also had plenty to play for as well. They were just 2 points ahead of Bolton in 18th place and needed a draw to ensure themselves of Premier League survival. QPR would still survive the cut if Bolton lose or drew against Stoke City in their final game.

The Game

City started the game on the front foot but were unable to go take the lead despite their best efforts. 20 minutes into the game the news had reached Etihad Stadium. United were 1-0 ahead against Sunderland. The nervousness soon turned into jubilation as Pablo Zabaleta put the citizens ahead in the 39th minute. City took the lead to half-time and were 45 minutes away from their 1st ever league title.

3 minutes into the start of the second half the unthinkable had happened. Former Liverpool striker Djibril Cisse had put the visitors level. United were on the top again and City had 42 minutes of normal time to get the winner. The game once again turned to City’s favor when Joey Barton of QPR was send-off in the 54th minute. The Citizens now needed a goal against only a 10 man QPR.

The 66th minute saw the Etihad stadium go into silence. Against the numbers advantage QPR had taken the lead courtesy of a Jamie Mackie goal. QPR held on till the end of 90 minutes and were just 5 minutes of injury time away from denying the Citizens their maiden title.

2 minutes into extra time and City were handed a lifeline when substitute Dzeko headed one to make it 2-2. 3 minutes left for the Citizens and a goal needed. The last minute of injury time saw Sergio Aguero writing his name in the history books with strike to the bottom right corner. City had won their maiden Premier League title and what a way to do it.

2. Liverpool vs Newcastle – (4-3) –  (1995/96)

Backdrop

What made the game between City and QPR great was the background story to the game. The game between Liverpool and Newcastle however stood out for the quality of action on the pitch. Both the teams still had a shot at winning the title heading Gameweek 32.

Liverpool were 8 points behind United at the top but had a game in had whereas Newcastle were just 3 points behind the league leaders with 2 games in hand. Liverpool were the inform team heading into the game. The Toons though had been struggling since January when they had a 12 point lead at the top.

The Game

Liverpool took the lead in just the second minute when Robbie Flower headed home a Stan Collymore cross. Newcastle didn’t have to wait long for the equalizer as Les Ferdinand made it 1-1 in the 10th minute. It was 2-1 to the Toons 4 minutes later when David Ginola scored from a Ferdinand assist.

Liverpool threatened to equalize through out the 1st half but were poor in finishing off their chances. Newcastle on the other hand were comfortable and were threatening to grab the third. The game went into half time 2-1.

10 minutes into the start of the second half Liverpool were back level thanks to Flower’s second goal of the game. The scores were 2-2 but not for long as Faustino Asprilla put the Toons ahead once again in the 57th minute. At 3-2 Newcastle started to assert their authority on the Merseysiders but Liverpool would have the last laugh as Stan Collymore pulled it back to 3-3 for the Kopites.

Both the teams were out for the win and the 90 minutes were over with scores still at 3-3. Deep into injury time now and Liverpool legend’s John Barnes and Ian Rush kicked off a move that would result in Collymore scoring the winner for Liverpool. The game ended 4-3 and will be remembered as one of the greatest games for a long time to come.

1. Newcastle vs Arsenal – (4-4) –  (2010/11)

Newcastle United vs Arsenal - 2011

Cheik Tiote of Newcastle after grabbing the 4th goal against Arsenal ( Pic Cou: Guardian.com)

Backdrop

Arguably the greatest of them all and it features Newcastle United once again. For a mid-season feature to be regarded as the best ever game in the Premier League era it must have been special. While the result of this game didn’t have as much of an impact on the league as the other two on the list. The game itself was breathtaking and one of the greatest comebacks in English football.

Arsenal were chasing United for the league title while Newcastle were hobbling around in mid-table. Newcastle however had won the reverse fixture at the Emirates stadium 1-0 and were hoping to do the double on their opponents.

Dominance

St.James was buzzing as usual ahead of kickoff but just 43 seconds into the game a wave of silence swept through the stadium. Theo Walcott had put the Gunners ahead with an assist from Andrey Arshavin. Newcastle’s misery were doubled in the 3rd minute when defender Djourou headed home the second for Arsenal.

Arsenal were playing football out of this world. 10 minutes into the game Arsenal had pulled further ahead with Robin Van Persie scoring off a Walcott cross. 10 minutes gone and Arsenal lead 3-0. Arsenal threatened further and rightly got the 4th as Van Persie scored his 2nd of the game from Sagna’s cross.

The game went into halftime 4-0 to Arsenal and Newcastle to be fair were lucky to not be behind by 6 or 7. The second half kicked off and 5 minutes in Arsenal had lost both Djourou and Abou Diaby, the former was substituted off after picking up an injury while Diaby was send off for pushing Joey Barton down to the ground after Barton’s off the ball tackle on him.

Comeback

Newcastle were handed a lifeline as they had the numbers advantage on their opponents now.4-0 scoreline however was still a pretty hard mountain to climb considering the quality in the Arsenal ranks. The Toons were handed a ticket back into the game when Koscielny fouled Leon Best inside the box and Joey Barton converted from the spot in the 68th minute.

Newcastle smelled blood in the 75th minute when Leon Best scored their 2nd and St.James Park was buzzing again. The 83rd minute saw Newcastle being awarded a second penalty after Williamson was fouled in the box by Rosicky. Barton once again stepped up for the Toons and they were back in game at 4-3.

3 minutes from the end of normal time the comeback was completed when Cheick Tiote blasted home a volley from the edge of the box. The scores 4-4 and Newcastle had done the impossible. Newcastle did have a chance to win the game but it ended 4-4 and a game that epitomizes the phrase “a game of two halves”.

Premier League’s Best Manager’s @ 24

The 25th anniversary of the Premier League is set to witness the clash between some of the greatest managers in the game today. Pep Guardiola, Antonio Conte, Jose Mourinho, Jurgen Klopp & Arsene Wenger are all involved and it promises to be a blockbuster season. In the past 24 seasons several top managers have been in the Premier League are a listing our top 3 below.

3. Jose Mourinho – Chelsea

Special One

Upon his arrival to Chelsea prior to the 2004/05 season Mourinho termed himself the “Special One”. The Special One didn’t disappoint in his first season as he guided the Blues to their 1st ever Premier League title.

Mourinho would repeat the success the very next season as the guided Chelsea to their 2nd league title. Perhaps the greatest character in the league’s history, Mourinho threw two winner’s medal awarded to him into the crowd. Although Mourinho missed out on the league title in his third season he helped the club to a League and FA Cup double.

One month into the start of the 2007/08 season Mourinho left Chelsea by mutual consent after his relationship with owner Roman Abramovich took a turn for the worse.

Homecoming

Mourinho’s second innings with Chelsea was confirmed in the Summer break of 2013. The Blues had won only one more league title(2009/10) since he left and were hoping the Special One would help them secure a 4th Premier League title. The 2013/14 season saw them finishing third behind Manchester City & Liverpool.

Mourinho though was able to fulfill his promise as he guided them to their 4th league title in the 2014/15 season by a 8 point margin. In addition to the League title they also won the League Cup in the same season and his homecoming was a success.

The 2015/16 season however ended Mourinho’s stay with Chelsea as the team struggled to get the results.A week before Christmas, Mourinho was let go from the club after losing 9 of their 16 league games to that point.

Mourinho has a win percentage of 66% in the Premier league – the highest among any manager in the league’s history

New Beginning

Mourinho takes charge of Manchester United for the 2016/17 season and his new challenge in the Premier League will be a “Special One”.

Honours

Premier League ( 2004/05, 2005/06 & 2014/15)

FA Cup (2006/07)

League Cup (2004/05, 2005/06 & 2014/15)

Premier League Record

Matches Wins Losses Draw
212 140 28 44

2. Arsene Wenger – Arsenal

Best managers in the Premier League Era - Arsene Wenger

Arsene Wenger (Pic Cou: express.co.uk)

Early Years

The oldest serving manager in the current Premier League. Arsene Wenger didn’t have the best of welcomes when he joined Arsenal ahead of the 1996/97 season. He was a relative unknown in the English game despite having a decade of managerial experience in the French Ligue. Wenger did well in his first season with the Gunners finishing the season 3rd in the table behind Newcastle only by Goal Difference.

The Gunners had a difficult 2nd season under Wenger and found themselves in mid-table by Christmas. Wenger managed to turn it around for the Club as the won their 1st ever Premier League title. The Frenchman turned Arsenal into a Top 4 side but were unable to post a serious title challenge again till the start of the new millennia.

The Invincibles

The 2001/02 season saw Arsenal tasting league success once again as they won the title finishing 7 points ahead of Liverpool in 2nd place. The 2002/03 season saw Arsenal losing out on the title in the final few weeks of the season but did retain the FA Cup. Wenger at the time was pretty vocal as to how he believed his side could go the entire season unbeaten.

The French coach did exactly that as he lead Arsenal to their 3rd Premier League title in 2003/04 season without suffering a single defeat. It is to this day Wenger’s greatest achievement in his managerial career. The 2004/05 season was more of the same for Arsenal as they finished runners-up behind Chelsea.

The Long Transition

The 2005/06 season saw Arsenal finishing 4th in the table and it was the first time that Wenger’s team had finished outside the top 2. From 2006/07 to 2014/15 Arsenal would never break into the top 2 but would never drop out of the top 4.

Trophies also dried up for the London club with the 2013/14 & 2014/15 FA Cup being the only trophies they would win in this period. Perhaps Wenger’s only failure with Arsenal would be that he has never led them to Champions League success. They went agonizingly close in 2005/06 but lost the final to Barcelona 2-1.

One Final Hurrah!

It feels like every new season could be his last with Arsenal but he still remains. The Gunners broke into the Top 2 in the 2015/16 season after a span of 10 years and Wenger will be hopeful doing one better this season. One has to feel that if he fails to provide another Top 2 finish and a trophy his time will be up. Even if he leaves at the end of this campaign he has etched himself in history as one of the greatest managers in the Premier League.

Honours

Premier League ( 1997/98, 2001/02 & 2003/04)

FA Cup (1997/98, 2001/02, 2002/03, 2004/05, 2013/14 & 2014/15 )

Premier League Record

Matches Wins Losses Draw
752 434 131 187

1. Alex Ferguson – Manchester United

The Greatest Premier League Manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Alex Ferguson (Pic Cou: express.co.uk)

The Premier League

Undoubtedly the greatest manager in the Premier League Era. Sir Alex Ferguson who began his journey with Manchester United in 1986 has won it all in English football. However it should be noted that his first few years with club weren’t all that rosy. Ferguson at one point was on the verge of getting sacked during the 1989/90 season.

Heading into the first ever Premier League season in 1992/93 Ferguson had tasted success with the Red Devils in the form of a FA Cup, League Cup and European Cup Winners’ Cup titles. However the Scottish manager was still to win a league title with United whose barren run had reached 35 years.

Initial Success

United who had finished as runners-up in the 1991/92 season were expected to challenge for the title in the 1992/93 season. However a slow start to the campaign had promoted pundits and supporters alike to write off their title challenge. Ferguson though rallied his team with the arrival of Eric Cantano and surged up the table to eventually win the 1st ever Premier League season by a 10 point margin.

By the end of the 1996/97 season United under Ferguson had won 4 Premier League titles only narrowly missing out on the trophy in the 1994/95 season to Blackburn. The highlight of Ferguson’s career is undoubtedly the 1998/99 season when they would secure a Treble which included the Premier League title, FA Cup and the Champions League.

United became the 1st and till today the only English team to achieve this feat although Liverpool did secure a Cup treble in the 2000/01 season.

The Turn of the Millennium

United went onto win several more Premier League titles, FA Cups, League Cups and a Champions League in the next decade and by the end of the 2012/13 season when Ferguson had announced his retirement he Scottish manager had made history as the most successful manager in the game.

The influence of Ferguson on United was so much so that when he announced his retirement the stocks of Manchester United fell in the stock market. Ferguson remained with United as the director of football post his retirement and even chose his successor at United – David Moyes. Though his pick would turn out to be a flop it will only a minor blip in what has been a great career.

Honours

Premier League ( 1992/93, 1993/94, 1995/96, 1996/97, 1998/99, 1999/00, 2000/01, 2002/03, 2006/07, 2007/08, 2008/09, 2010/11 & 2012/13)

FA Cup (1989/90, 1993/94, 1995/96, 1998/99 & 2003/04)

League Cup ( 1991/92, 2005/06, 2008/09 & 2009/10)

Champions League ( 1990/91, 1998/99 & 2007/08)

Premier League Record

Matches Wins Losses Draw
810 528 114 168
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Premier League’s European Presence @ 24

It’s safe to say that the English clubs have under performed in the European competitions in the last 3-4 seasons. The 2014/15 season saw for the first time no English clubs in the quarter finals of either the Champions League nor the Europa League. The 2015/16 however saw a partial resurgence with Manchester City making it to the semi-finals of the Champions League and Liverpool finishing as runners-up in the Europa League.

With the kind of money invested and the level of Football in the Premier League on the rise expect the English Clubs to reclaim their lost glory in Europe sooner rather than latter. Listed below are the list of Premier League clubs who have made an impact in Europe since the inception of the Premier League.

Honorable Mentions

Arsenal

Despite their success in domestic competitions, the Gunners are yet to taste success in Europe. The closest they came in the Premier League Era was in the 2005/06 season when they finished runners-up in the champions league after losing to Barcelona 2-1 in the final. Perhaps the 2016/17 season will finally be their year.

Middlesbrough

They maybe one among the promoted trio in the 2016/17 season but a decade ago Boro were one of Premier League’s most consistent clubs. They almost made history in the 2005/06 when they reached the Europa League final but eventually lost it to Sevilla 4-0.

Fulham

Now in the Championship Fulham tasted their finest moments in the Premier League Era under the management of Roy Hodgson. Fulham had won the now defunct UEFA Intertoto Cup in 2002 but their finest moment in Europe came in the 2009/10 season when they reached the Europa League final. The club finished 2nd best on the night after Atletico Madrid defeated them 2-1 in extra time.

3. Chelsea

The arrival of Roman Abramovich as owner was the turning point in the history of Chelsea FC. Even though the club was competitive in the Premier League the club was never a European Club. However over the last decade the Blues have won the Champions League once and the Europa League once.

Champions League success came first, in the 2011/12 season they defeated the German giants Bayern Munich on Penalties in the final. The very next season they went onto win the Europa League beating Portuguese club Benfica 2-1 in the final.

They have also made several appearances in semi finals of the Champions League & even finished as runners-up in the 2007/08 season. The 2016/17 will see Chelsea lining up under Antonio Conte but they won’t be in either the Champions League nor the Europa League.

2. Liverpool

Liverpool FC champion in Europe

Five Time European Champions – Liverpool FC (Pic Cou: Dailymail.com)

Undoubtedly the most successful English team in European competitions with 5 Champions League titles and 3 Europa League titles. While it’s true Liverpool have failed to win a Premier League title till date they’ve remained a force to reckon with both domestically and in Europe.

During the Premier League Era they’ve managed one Champions League title and one Europa League title. They’ve also managed several semi-final appearances in the Champions League and even came as runners-up in the 2006/07 season.

Their 2000/01 Europa League success came after beating Spanish club Deportivo Alaves 5-4 in the final. Always a team to provide the special moments the Merseyside Reds won their only Champions League title in the Premier League Era in the 2004/05 season beating AC Milan on Penalties after the game ended 3-3 in normal and extra time. The final is considered to be greatest in the competitions history and is fondly remembered as the “Miracle in Istanbul“.

Like Chelsea, Liverpool will miss out on European action in the 2016/17 but expect them to be back in the fold soon.

1. Manchester United

It’s no surprise that United have been Premier League’s most successful club in Europe over the last 24 years. The Red Devils have won the Champions League twice during this time frame. The first of their wins came in the 1998/99 season when they got the better of Bayern Munich 2-1 in the final.

Their second champions League came in the 2007/08 season when they defeated fellow Premier League club Chelsea in the final via Penalties after the game ended 1-1 in extra-time. United have also finished as the runners-up on two occasions in 2008/09 and 2010/11. They lost both the finals to Barcelona 2-0 & 3-1 respectively.

Although they won’t be in the Champions League this season they can have a crack at the Europa League. A competition they’ve never won.

2015/16 Premier League Season – Short Review

greatest underdog Leicester City Premier League

2015/16 Premier League Champions – Leicester City (Pic Cou: Dailymail.co.uk)

The 2015/16 was among the best in the league’s history. A team who till two seasons were playing football in the Championship had done the impossible. Leicester City were crowned the 2015/16 Premier League Champions ahead of Spurs, Arsenal and Manchester City.

The Foxes started the season with the odds of 5000-1 to win the league and after the end of 38 games the handful few who had made the bet.. The rest is history as they say. Not only Leicester but Spurs also managed to break into the top 3 for the first time in the Premier League Era.

The super heavyweights in the league including Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea all failed to live up to their standards with Liverpool and Chelsea finishing outside the European spots. The other surprises in the season include the performances of West Ham and Southampton both of whom finished 5th and 6th respectively.

The unnoticed stories

What is not a surprise is Sunderland surviving the cut for yet another season despite looking the most likely to go down for most of the season. Another of the biggest stories of the season was the relegation of Aston Villa who had been a part of the 7 that had played in ever Premier League season till date.

Newcastle United despite the arrival of Rafa Benitez who till 12 months ago were managing Real Madrid couldn’t stay and were relegated along with Norwich City & Villa.

Premier League Best Ever Season @ 24

The 2015/16 season definitely ranks among the best but there are a few others which ranks ahead of it. They are listed below: –

3. 2004/05 Premier League

Backdrop

This was the season that signaled the arrival of Jose Mourinho and a rejuvenated Chelsea FC. They easily ran out the champions accumulating 95 points from 38 games and conceding just 15 goals the entire season. The European places were also decided without much of a fuss with Liverpool who had finished outside the Top 4 going onto win the Champions League.

This season is fondly remembered for the relegation scramble which went into the last day of the season. Heading into Gameweek 38 not team were mathematically relegated for the league. West Brom began the day bottom of the table with Southampton, Norwich and Crystal Palace the other teams in the dog fight.

Premier League Table Heading into Game week 38 – 2004/05
Pos Club Played Won Lost Drawn GD Points
17 Norwich City 37 7 18 12 -29 33
18 Southampton 37 6 17 14 -20 32
19 Crystal Palace 37 7 19 11 -21 32
20 West Brom 37 5 16 16 -27 31

How it unfolded

All the four teams involved needed a win on the final day. Norwich visited Fulham, West Brom hosted Portsmouth, Palace made the visit to Charlton and Southampton had the hard task of hosting Manchester United. Norwich who had the fate in their own fates suffered a 6-0 thrashing against Fulham while Southampton despite their best efforts lost 2-1 to Manchester United.

West Brom who had been bottom of the table at Christmas went onto beat Portsmouth 2-0. The onus was on Palace who were leading till the 70th minute against Charlton however disaster struck and Charlton equalized. West Brom survived the cut and their miraculous escape is know fondly known as the great escape.

2. 1994/95 Premier League

Blackburn Rovers Premier League

1994/95 Premier League Champions – Blackburn Rovers (Pic Cou: Dailymail.co.uk)

A season that may well be remembered for the assaults, booze, bribery and drug problems. The season however also provided one of the best title challenges in the league’s history. Blackburn for much of the season were leading the table by a comfortable margin. However a slump in form towards the end of the season helped Manchester United catch up with them.

Blackburn had a 2 point advantage heading into the final game of the season against Liverpool at Anfield. Manchester United though were in good form and a relatively easier fixture against West Ham. Blackburn took the lead against Liverpool through Alan Shearer in the 20th minute.

Liverpool though fought back in the second half with John Barnes equalizing in the 64th minute and then Jamie Redknapp grabbing the winner in the 90th minute. Manchester United though couldn’t capitalize and were held to a 1-1 draw by West Ham. It was a memorable day and still is one of the final day head to heads in the league’s history.

1. 2011/12 Premier League

When the title is decided with a 93rd minute goal on the last day of the season it’s bound to a great campaign. Manchester City grabbed the 2011/12 title by beating QPR 3-2 on the final day of the season despite trailing 2-1 at the end of 90 minutes. Manchester United once again came out second best on GD despite a win against Sunderland in their final game.

The relegation battle was equaling entertaining with QPR and Aston Villa surviving the cut and Bolton going down to the Championship.

Premier League @ 24 Awards

Best Club – Manchester United

With 13 league titles to their name and top 4 finishes in all but two of the seasons till now Manchester United are the Best Club in the Premier League Era. Even though the dominance of the Red Devils have taken a hit for the last 3-4 seasons you can bet on them to bounce back sooner rather than later.

The Underdogs – Leicester City

One could stake a claim for Blackburn for the Premier League title in 1994/95. However Leicester City’s triumph last season was nothing short of extra ordinary. Jamie Vardy who till a few seasons ago was playing in the conference went onto win the Golden Boot in the league. The performances of Drinkwater, Wes Morgan, Kante and Mahirez were are also pivtol and should why Claudio Ranieri is a tactical genius.

The possibility of Leicester regaining the title this season is slim but you can bet on them having a good campaign once again.

Unlucky Ones – Liverpool

One of the most successful clubs in English football have struggled in the Premier League. Despite whatever they’ve done Liverpool are yet to win a league title. They have gone close on numerous occasions (thrice) most recently in 2013/14 but it just hasn’t happened for the club.

They are undergoing a massive revamp under Jurgen Klopp so bet on them winning the elusive Premier League title sooner rather than later.

Additional Resources

[1] Which season has been the greatest ever for the Premier League?, 2016

[2] Verdict on the best Premier League season ever, 2016