With just five weeks to go before the start of the 2023/24 Premier League season, English clubs are splashing the cash in the summer transfer window.
Defending champions Manchester City have been relatively quiet so far, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see them improve their squad over the next few weeks.
Several other title hopefuls are also active in the transfer market and more big-money deals will be completed before the summer window closes.
Read on as we preview the 2023/24 Premier League season and offer our predictions on the key issues at both ends of the table.
Man City eye another title shot
Man City’s continued form in 2022/23 saw them win the title for a third year in a row and they are the bookies’ favorites to repeat the feat next term.
Bettors wishing to back City can read more on BettingTop10 about the latest Premier League odds and their chances of continuing their dominance in the English top flight.
The acquisition of striker Erling Braut Haaland last summer greatly boosted the team’s already strong attacking options.
The Norwegian scored 36 goals in his first season in the Premier League and is expected to score over 40 next season.
City have compensated for the loss of midfielder Ilkay Gundogen by signing Mateo Kovacic from Chelsea, while keeping the rest of their squad intact.
Arsenal had posed a strong challenge to Man City for most of last season, but the run-in revealed City’s greater depth.
The Gunners have been active in the transfer market this summer, but their squad still looks a little short of the quality needed to win the title.
With City likely to add to their options before the transfer window closes, it will be extremely difficult for him to stay again next term.
If Manchester United can secure the services of a top-class striker before the start of the season, they could emerge as serious title contenders.
However, it’s hard to imagine them stopping Man City from maintaining their recent stranglehold on the English top flight.
The race for the Champions League will be tight
Man City, Man United and Arsenal look good bets to fill the top three spots and book their places in the 2024/25 Champions League.
Predicting who will join them at number four is no easy task, as many teams have genuine ambitions to challenge.
Newcastle United finished in fourth place last season but may struggle to repeat the feat in the face of competition from Liverpool and Chelsea.
The Magpies took full advantage of their rivals’ weaknesses last season to seal a place in the Champions League.
However, the extra schedule in Europe will put a lot of pressure on a team that is already quite weak.
While midfielder Sandro Tonali appears to be an excellent signing, Newcastle need several more quality arrivals to challenge for the top four again.
Liverpool had a poor run for most of last season before a late surge helped them climb to fifth in the Premier League.
After adding some quality to their squad this summer, the Reds will be hoping to return to the top four at least next season.
Similar hopes will be in store for Chelsea after finishing 12th last time around, but they may find it difficult to break into the top teams.
New manager Mauricio Pochettino has been tasked with reviving the club’s fortunes and he will need to hit the ground running if he is to succeed.
Villa could challenge for Europa League berth
Aston Villa’s decision to appoint Steven Gerrard as manager in 2021 was always a failure and it was no surprise when he was sacked during last season.
Gerrard got the job after winning only one trophy in three seasons with Rangers – a poor return for a club with very high ambitions.
After a string of poor results, Villa sacked the former Liverpool midfielder and replaced him with Unai Emery – a respected boss with a strong CV.
The move paid off massively as Emery turned Villa’s fortunes around, leading them to seventh in the standings and a place in next season’s Europa Conference League.
Villa are an interesting proposition at odds of 9/1 to finish in the top six following the improvements made under Emery.
The Midlands outfit look set to make a number of clever changes to their squad this summer and could potentially challenge for a top-four finish if all goes well.
Tottenham Hotspur will also be eyeing qualification for Europe after finishing the previous campaign in eighth place.
However, it could turn out to be another season of disappointment for the London club, as their squad lacks the quality needed to produce consistent results.
Promoted teams gear up for a tough campaign
Burnley, Sheffield United and Luton Town won promotion from the Championship last season, but their stay in the top flight could be short-lived.
The Clarets spent a lot of money on players to advance from the second tier, but their team never looked good enough to move up in class.
After receiving much praise for the work he did at Turf Moor last year, manager Vincent Kompany now faces a stern test of his coaching abilities.
Kompany previously failed to live up to expectations with Anderlecht in the Belgian top flight and history could be repeating itself in the Premier League.
Sheffield United finished ten points behind Burnley last season and they are sure to struggle next season.
The Blades’ squad is in need of significant improvements this summer, but they will likely be unable to attract the quality players they need.
It’s a similar story with Championship play-off winners Luton Town, who are a banker’s bet to finish bottom in the Premier League next season.
The Hatters have done well to climb the English pyramid but their stay in the top flight is not expected to last longer than one campaign.