The English Premier league season, the most frantic season in living memory, is finally run and done. The English Premier league season, the most frantic season in living memory, is finally run and done. We’ve handed out out end of season awards, but, all the way back in September last year, our assembled Vendetta Sports Media experts, Jarrod Prosser, Serenity Liessmann and Gavin Daly, put their collective necks on the line by making an assortment of predictions about the upcoming season.

How did our experts fare with their Premier League predictions? Well, ummm……..

Let’s start at the top: who wins the league?

Full marks to Serenity, who plumped for Manchester City to regain their crown. Jarrod and Gavin both tipped Liverpool to go back-to-back. When we checked in at the mid point of the season, things looked very different as City we’re languishing down in 6th, whereas the Reds were sitting pretty atop the league table.

The manner in which the form flipped for both sides wasn’t all that easy to predict in real time, though in retrospect Liverpool’s injuries hampered them, whilst City’s new and returning players gelled at exactly the right moment.

For Gavin and especially resident Evertonian Jarrod, the pain of getting their Liverpool prediction wrong is tempered by the fact that Liverpool didn’t in fact win the Premier League.

Who claims the other Champions League spots? In order of league finish, please.

Both Gavin and Serenity just about nailed this one. Both experts picked the right teams, but couldn’t quite get the order right. Serenity, of course, nailed the victors before going with Liverpool (finished 3rd), Chelsea (4th) and Manchester United (2nd). Gavin selected Liverpool, City, United and Chelsea.

For his part, Jarrod went with City and United to finish 2nd and 3rd. As for 4th he went for….Arsenal? That didn’t quite turn out. In fairness, the Gunners were 15th at the time of our mid season check-in. They ended up 2nd in a table of 2021 results. They’ll be an intriguing watch next campaign.

Who’s going down? Relegation picks, thanks.

All of our experts correctly picked the low hanging fruit that was West Brom. When a team can get Sam Allardyce relegated, you know they’re no good.

Serenity picked West Brom’s fellow promoted teams – Fulham and Leeds – to go straight back down. She was on the money with the Cottages, though Leeds’ exciting and swashbuckling 9th place finish prevented her from a clean sweep.

Jarrod also picked Fulham, though his last pick was somewhat off the mark with 6th place West Ham leaving him with so much egg on his face. To the Australian’s credit, he had enough humility to name them his team of the year in his end of season awards.

Gavin was 100% correct about Leeds bloodying a few noses. His crystal ball was somewhat cloudy, however, in picking Fulham to stay up. He was bang on about Sheffield United’s regression, though even he would have thought they would go down with such a whimper. His final relegation pick was another of the surprise packs in eventual 11th placed finisher Aston Villa. The Birmingham side only dropped into the bottom half of the table as injuries and a late form slump took hold.

Which club will flatter to deceive?

Jarrod almost went with West Ham – a lucky escape.

In the end he, along with Gavin and Serenity all hit the nail on the head by picking Tottenham. Though it must be said that at mid season, Spurs were looking good for a Champions League place.

Gavin split his vote in this category, though it didn’t blot his copybook. Despite some high profile signings, Everton were the epitome of flattering to deceive. The Toffees home form seemed to leave along with the fans. Before the COVID related lockouts, Everton were briefly top of the league. Their 4th placed away form failed to balance out their awful 15th place home form.

Which club will be a pleasant surprise?

Not much ‘expertise’ to speak of in this category.

Serenity went with Arsenal. Whilst the first half of their season was certainly a surprise, it was only pleasant to Tottenham fans. They were so bad early on that their 2021 recovery became a stealth pleasant surprise.

Jarrod decided to go with Newcastle United after determining that Southampton were too obvious. Neither of those choices were any good.

Gavin also selected the Saints, though he did offer a shout out to Graham Potter’s delightful Brighton side. Whilst they didn’t ‘kick on to mid-table’ as he predicted, they are surely only a competent striker away from those lofty heights next season? Assuming they keep hold of Potter, of course.

Golden Boot winner? And how many goals do they score?

Oh, boy. This didn’t go well, did it?

Jarrod went with the Vodka and Skittles fuelled Jamie Vardy to score an even 20 goals. He ended up 7th in the table with 15 goals. His (we think it was a) joke prediction of Bruno Fernandes to score 36 of his 37 goals from the penalty spot was closer than anyone would like to admit.

Gavin held a candle for Danny Ings and the Southampton veteran did well to score 12 times in a surprisingly poor side. His actual pick, Arsenal talisman Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang ended up tied for 20th in the Premier League with 10 goals, well short of Gavin’s prediction of 23.

Chelsea fan Serenity went with the homer pick of new boy Timo Werner. I’ll allow you a moment to get that laughter out of your system……….you’re good, now? Excellent!

Poor Timo worked his little backside off, but, as the old saying goes, couldn’t hit a cows arse with a banjo. With a mere six league strikes to his name in his debut Chelsea campaign, the £47.5m signing managed to make it all the way up to an even 50th in the league.

He did, though, break the Premier League record with 73,683,962 off sides. (Ed: please check)

Which signing will have the most impact on their team?

And it only gets worse for our experts!

Serenity and Jarrod fingered Werner. If you thought that was a poor choice, Gavin went for Manchester United’s theoretical midfielder Donny Van de Beek.

At least Werner played actual games, Gavin!

And who will flop?

Serenity abstained from making a call on this category. Which I’m sure you’ll agree was quite weak. As a result, we’re going to assign Werner as her selection, here. Good on you for getting this pick 100% right, Serenity!

Gavin played the percentages and went with Whoever Mourinho Signed. In this case, Matt Doherty, who had a poor season by any standard for Spurs; and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who was solid without being a huge influence at the base of the Tottenham midfield.

Jarrod also played the odds and took Insert Arsenal Defender here Gabriel Magalhaes. The Brazilian was somewhat of a Tallest Dwarf type, the best of a poor bunch of Gunners defenders. To top it off, he contracted COVID in January.

Arsenal and COVID. Poor bloke.

Who takes out the PFA Player of the Year?

All of our experts picked Manchester City’s Belgian maestro Kevin de Bruyne.

Though the award itself is not awarded until June 4th this year, the 29 year old is in with a reasonable shot of winning. He’s generally seen as the 4th favourite behind teammate Ruben Dias, Tottenham’s only ray of hope in Harry Kane, and Gavin’s 2nd pick in Fernandes.

First manager to be removed by ‘mutual consent’?

Jarrod went with his eventual Manager of the Year in West Ham’s David Moyes, and Gavin had a feeling that might happen, though ultimately went in another direction..

Serenity looked at another claret and blue club manager in Aston Villa’s Dean Smith. Jarrod also suspected that a poor first month could see the Villains make changes. Their hot start saw Smith keep his job, though.

Gavin picked Mourinho, who at least actually did lose his job.

Not a one of us picked West Brom’s Slaven Bilic.

Finally, what will be the biggest controversy this season?

Gavin, Serenity and Jarrod all went with VAR.

Sometimes, it’s like shooting fish in a barrel.