The top of the Premier League table is incredibly tight. Three points separate the expected top six contenders, with Liverpool leading at ten. Both Stoke City and Newcastle also make the top group with seven and Everton's home win over Chelsea brought them up to six. Nothing has been settled yet.
This last week was a good one for Tottenham Hotspur. I think it's not a coincidence that in Christian Eriksen's first start, Spurs nearly doubled their season total in SiBoT. They had six combined through the first three matches, and five on Saturday alone. For the game, I have Spurs at 2.4 expected goals scored and 0.5 expected goals allowed. That's dominance in the stats.
Let's go to the table because I'm getting tired again.
Projected Table and Power Rankings
|West Ham United||10||12||16||42||-13||80||0%||-.5||19%||+1||0%||0||0%|
|West Bromwich Albion||10||11||17||41||-14||82||0%||0||22%||-3||0%||0||0%|
- As I said a couple weeks ago, you really shouldn't read much into the rankings of the top six clubs. They are divided by only four points in the projected table, which means that one good week or one bad week shuffles everything back up again. Effectively, right now, I think the English Premier features a six-way tie for the title.
- I just generally continue to not be terribly impressed by the supposed title contenders, Manchester United, Manchester City, and Chelsea. Not that they're bad, but I'm just not seeing the obvious gap in talent and production between those big three and the next three of Spurs, Arsenal and Liverpool.
- And then there's Everton. I've been saying they're better than their results in the first three weeks, and this week they actually didn't meaningfully outplay Chelsea at home but got all three points. Everton have been just as good as anyone in the EPL this year by the underlying stats, with 16 SiBoT, 8 SoBoT and 5 BC, compared to 8, 3 and 3 allowed. I would not be shocked if Everton make a run at the top four, despite how tight that race appears to be.
- Newcastle have made a pretty incredible recovery not only in the table, but more importantly in the underlying stats table that I'm sure Papiss Demba Cisse and Yohan Cabaye are checking ever week. After recording only one shot on target in the first two weeks, on a Cheick Tiote 30-yarder, Newcastle have turned things around entirely with 10 SiBoT and 8 SoBoT in two weeks. They have entirely deserved the six points they've taken in wins over Fulham and Aston Villa.
- I don't think anyone in the league is obviously terrible. The issue more is that we have maybe six or seven clubs that are probably deserving of relegation without being truly Reading-level execrable. There is just as much of a multiple-club scrum at the bottom of the table as there is at the top.