The Barclays Premier League at Christmas

Published Tuesday, December 22, 2015 8:12 AM by William Montero

This has to be one of the weirdest, least predictable Barclays Premier League seasons in memory so far.  Eye popping upsets nearly every weekend. Leicester City at the top of the table. Chelsea in the bottom five of the table searching for leadership.

The coaching carousel has been turning this fall as five clubs have fired their skippers. The genius of Jose Mourinho in the unemployment line. Louis Van Gaal sure to follow. Brendan Rodgers out and Jurgen Klopp arriving at Liverpool.  Mourinho to resurface at Manchester United?

The title race is wide open.  Surprising Leicester City tops the table but few think their incredible run can continue all the way to the league title.  We shall see.  Arsenal sit close behind with a wealth of talent and stars. My money would be on the Gunners even though I would love to see the Leicester/Vardy/Mahrez story continue to the end!

The Champions League Places -
Arsenal look quite solid for one of the four.  Can Leicester hang on and finish inside the top four? They may not win the title, but I think the fairy tale leaves them inside the UCL places.  That leaves two spots and with the way everyone seems to be dropping points this year who knows who finishes in there.  I think Manchester City finishes no worse than third and quite possibly higher if Vincent Kompany comes back at full strength in the new year.

So there's three of the four.  Talented Arsenal and Manchester City along with darlings Leicester City.  Who gets the final spot? Even though both Crystal Palace and Watford are right there I don't see either as having the class to last in the fight. Liverpool is not ready yet as Klopp is still trying to get things straight. That leaves only Tottenham and Manchester United.  Spurs are playing well and looking steady. ManU is on the verge of crisis as fans jeer the tactics of LVG.  So my money falls on Tottenham to finally get their place in the UCL.

The Revelations -
Leicester City - the golden boys have crashed onto the scene and are the talk of England.  Jamie Vardy and Mahrez have taken the BPL by storm.

Arsenal - could this be the season that Arsenal finally lifts the trophy for again? It has been 12 years since the Gunners last title.  Wouldn't it be ironic for Arsene Wenger to win the title in the same year his nemesis Mourinho is sacked?

Watford and Crystal Palace - the two sit 6th and 7th currently and deservedly so.  Great fans and spunky squads make these two teams an absolute nightmare to play.

The Disappointments --
Chelsea - who could have seen this coming?  World class coach with world class talent. A bottomless checkbook. Yet 15th at Christmas with the season down the drain.  Only a spring Champions League run could offer joy.

Swansea - a complete surprise to see this team in the bottom three at this point.  No excuses. One win in their last twelve has the Swans in big trouble. They simply cannot score goals. Rumors of trying to pry Loic Remy away from Chelsea couldn't hurt and a dynamic new coach should as well. I just can't see Swansea going down when it is all settled.

Liverpool - Brenden Rodgers has crashed and burned. Jurgen Klopp has arrived to save the day yet Liverpool has yet to find any consistency in their results.

Aston Villa - talk about a dumpster fire. There will be no great escape this year. Villa is going down in grand fashion.