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Game Details
ESPN3 11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
ESPN3 11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
ESPN3 11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
ESPN3 11:45 AM UTC
Game Details
 By Ian Darke

Premier League season, reviewed: Ian Darke goes Man City to West Brom

Ian Darke doesn't hold back when it comes to reviewing the 2017-18 Premier League season.

1. Manchester City: Total domination and brilliant football reflected in a Premier League record of 100 points. Pep Guardiola unlikely to let standards slip next season.

2. Manchester United: An improvement of four places and 12 points from the previous season, but fans crave a more vibrant Jose Mourinho team and a serious title challenge next time.

3. Tottenham: Considering they had to play a whole season at Wembley, third place is a good effort. But still no silverware to show for it and Mauricio Pochettino's mood clearly betrays the fact that he believes he can do no more without serious investment.

4. Liverpool: Pulsating football and record-breaking scoring from Mohamed Salah. Virgil Van Dijk has tightened a suspect defence. The Champions League Final against Real Madrid might give an indication of whether they can push for the title next season.

5. Chelsea: An air of uncertainty has hung over Stamford Bridge all season and last year's champions were too erratic to adequately compete. Antonio Conte has cut a disengaged figure and seems certain to go.

6. Arsenal: The end of an era and while all the emotional tributes to Arsene Wenger were richly deserved, his lowest-ever finish underlined the feeling that his departure was not premature. The board seem prepared to take a punt on a young new manager, but how much budget will he have?

7. Burnley: A phenomenal effort by Sean Dyche's battling, underrated team has pushed them into Europe for the first time since the 1960s. A triumph of spirit, hard work and organisation.

8. Everton: Probably flattered by eighth place in a difficult season, which ends with yet another manager facing a fans' mutiny. Sam Allardyce seems unlikely to survive. But who will satisfy their increasingly demanding supporters?

9. Leicester City: Eighth place wasn't enough to keep Claude Puel in a job at Southampton last year and he could find that ninth brings a similar fate. A talented squad should have done better.

In the end, Man City were simply unstoppable this season. It's no surprise they ran away with the title
In the end, Man City were simply unstoppable this season. It's no surprise they ran away with the title.

10. Newcastle United: Rafa Benitez is adored by the Toon Army. He has done a fine job with a limited squad and budget, with Kenedy proving to be a crucial loan signing.

11. Crystal Palace: They had no points and no goals after seven games, but Roy Hodgson sparked a remarkable recovery. England dropped a clanger by allowing Wilfred Zaha to represent the Ivory Coast.

12. Bournemouth: Started awfully, but once again Eddie Howe's adventurous approach has steered the Cherries to mid-table. As long as he stays they will continue to defy gravity.

13. West Ham United: David Moyes deserves credit for converting the previously struggling Marko Arnautovic into a menacing central striker. It's probably the biggest reason the Hammers stayed up.

14. Watford: Endured yet another change of manager in mid-campaign, but this club makes the musical chairs work. Midfield powerhouse Abdoulaye Doucoure was the key man and is likely to attract bids.

15. Brighton & Hove Albion: Widely tipped for relegation, the Seagulls always looked organised and brave enough to defy the gloomy forecasts. Playmaker Pascal Gross was among the best signings anywhere this season, the anchor of a side that was magnificently managed by Chris Hughton.

16. Huddersfield Town: Their fans whipped up a fantastic atmosphere and they made fools of all the experts with draws at Man City and Chelsea to deservedly clinch safety. A breath of fresh air for the league, though a goal return of only 28 scored will need improvement if they wish to avoid relegation next season.

17. Southampton: Flat and off the pace for most of the season, they produced when it mattered in a relegation crunch game at Swansea. Otherwise poor.

18. Swansea City: The end of a great ride over the past decade. Sold their best players and did not properly replace them, also paying the price for abandoning their sweet style of recent years.

19. Stoke City: Stories of dressing room unrest might be behind their misfiring season. Their defence was frequently dire and other than Xherdan Shaqiri, there was little inspiration.

20. West Bromwich Albion: Not good enough until it was too late and perhaps left wishing they had put the popular Darren Moore in charge sooner. He should get the permanent job now as they eye a return to the top flight.

Ian Darke, who called games for the network during the 2010 and 2014 World Cups, is ESPN's lead soccer voice in the U.S. Reach him on Twitter @IanDarke.


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