With the Premier League season drawing near the end, I wanted to take a look back. As of April 15, Liverpool hold a two point lead over Manchester City. Liverpool have four league games, while City have five. It will be a photo finish to say the least! Huddersfield and Fulham will be relegated at the end of the season. Cardiff City look to be the final team to join them in relegation, however they could still survive. As any season passes, it becomes apparent what certain teams need to increase their success. That’s exactly what this article will be about. I will be looking back at each team’s season and deciding what each Premier League team needs (or needed). For this piece, we will be starting the season over and I’ll be deciding what each side could have used to improve on their standing this season.
1. Liverpool- A Backup Striker
What do you give the team that is in first? This actually took me awhile to come up with. However, I think this option is a necessary improvement. Roberto Firmino is a great striker for Liverpool, but he is only human. Rest is sometimes needed for such a vital piece of a team. Behind Firmino, Daniel Sturridge and Divock Origi have combined for only four goals this season. A reliable back up striker could help ease the stress on manager Jurgen Klopp.
2. Manchester City- A Full Season of KDB
Kevin De Bruyne is an exceptional talent. His recent story with The Players’ Tribune gave great insight into his life and made me respect him even more. He is one of City’s best players and creates many chances when he is on the pitch. However, this season has been a tough one for De Bruyne. Injuries have caused him to miss a solid portion of the season, which would be devastating for any team. If KDB could have stayed healthy all season, City would probably be in first right now.
3. Tottenham- A New Ankle For Harry Kane
Similar to what I gave Manchester City, Tottenham need health more than anything else. Harry Kane has been battling through minor injuries for the majority of the season, including ankle issues. In Tottenham’s most recent Champions League match, Kane went in for a tackle on Man City’s Fabian Delph. While sliding to make the challenge, Kane had his ankle landed on Delph and had to be carried of the field. Reports state he may miss the rest of the season, just as Spurs look to advance in the Champions League and remain in the top 4. A healthy Harry would be a major boost to this Spurs side.
4. Arsenal- A Defense
This may come across as snarky or sarcastic, but Arsenal need an entire defensive overhaul. Manager Unai Emery was left with minimal funds in his first season and was only able to bring Sokratis to try and strengthen the backline. In reality Arsenal need more than just Sokratis. Laurent Koscielny isn’t getting any younger and Shkodran Mustafi has peaked. Depth and overall talent need a boost for a team that has conceded 40 goals this season.
5. Chelsea- Less Pressure On Maurizio Sarri
As a Chelsea fan, I will admit it. Chelsea fans are spoiled. We have seen our team win multiple Premier League titles in the past years, as well as a Champions League title. However, all of this success has warped both the board and fans view on the team. Chelsea have a reputation of never playing young players. This is primarily because managers face such pressure to bring success, that they are forced to stick with trusted players rather than taking risks. There are issues at Chelsea Football Club but Maurizio Sarri is not one of them. His style of play requires time to understand and develop. He deserves another season and his name should be taken off of the hot seat.
6. Manchester United- An Ashley Young Replacement
Ashley Young has been a solid player for Man U throughout his career. But, all good things must come to an end. This season has not been a good one for Young. He has been exposed in big matches and is not getting the job done anymore. However, manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has little else to turn to off the bench. I fully expect United to be in the market for a new fullback this upcoming summer.
7. Leicester City- Youri Tielemans For The Whole Season
If you play FIFA career modes like I do, chances are you have heard of Youri Tielemans. He was once hailed as the next star of the game, poised to dominate in the midfield for years to come. Media hype faded a little as a season or two passed. Tielemans earned a transfer to AS Monaco and has spent half of this season at Leicester. He has been absolutely fantastic. His poise and passing in the midfield has helped the Foxes win four straight matches. If Leicester could have had Tielemans for a full season, they may have made some noise farther up the table.
8. Wolves- An Outright Center-Back
*TOOT MY OWN HORN ALERT* I predicted a top half finish for Wolves this season and it’s looking good so far! Wily Boly has been a rock at the back for Wolves this season, but he needs a wingman. Wolves run a 3-at-the-back formation, meaning they run with usually three center-backs. A rotation of players who are more than capable have started alongside Boly, but another true center-back would have helped to shore up the Wolves back line. Keep an eye out for them to be active in the summer market, trying to shore up the defense.
9. Everton- A Match Winning Striker
Everton are becoming middle of the table dwellers, something that Toffee’s fans can’t be happy with. The team has two very talented players capable of scoring in Gylfi Sigurdsson and Richarlison. However, neither of those players are true strikers. Dominic Calvert-Lewin is a younger talent trying to claim the striker spot, but Everton needed more. A consistent goal scorer is wanted by every team, but it’s exactly what Everton needed up top this season.
10. Watford- Center-Back(s)
Watford have overachieved this season in my opinion. I have already come out and owned up to being wrong about them this year. (Read my apology here) Spots 7-10 in the Premier League are currently separated by 1 point. Watford could be at the top of that heap if they go out and get a higher quality center-back or two. Ben Foster has been a brilliant keeper this season and a strengthened defense would have helped Watford really challenge the top six spots in the league this past year.
That’s it for part one of what each Premier League team needs! Do you agree? Keep an eye out for part two and feel free to share your thoughts. Don’t forget to share and subscribe! Let me know your thoughts on what each Premier League team needs! Thanks again to Fredrik (@F_edits), do you need a graphic designer? If you do hire him! Have a great day, and God bless.