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Cartilage Free Captain Predicts the 2022-23 Premier League

We put our prognostication hats on!

Manchester City v Liverpool - The FA Community Shield
Is this what we’ll see... again... in May?
Photo by Michael Regan - The FA/The FA via Getty Images

It’s hard to believe, but the Premier League season begins TODAY when Arsenal visits Crystal Palace today at 3 pm ET / 8 pm BST. It feels ludicrously early, because it IS ludicrously early — the World Cup throws a major spanner in the works, and we’re going to get a month’s worth of matches under everyone’s belts even before the transfer window closes.

All this instability has made this season particularly difficult to predict, but that didn’t stop us from asking ourselves — and our readers — what they think will happen in the 2022-23 Premier League. Last week, we asked you to predict the Premier League table, and the Carty Free staff did the same. We also asked a few new, fun questions asking you to prognosticate on the season ahead. Here are the results.

First, the table positions.

Masthead 2022-23 Table Predictions

Club MEAN ST/DEV Highest Lowest Title% Top4% Rel%
Club MEAN ST/DEV Highest Lowest Title% Top4% Rel%
Manchester City 1.1 0.25 1 2 94% 100% 0%
Liverpool 2.1 0.44 1 3 6% 100% 0%
Tottenham 2.9 0.34 2 3 0% 100% 0%
Arsenal 4.6 0.81 4 6 0% 63% 0%
Chelsea 5.3 0.93 4 7 0% 25% 0%
Manchester United 5.4 0.89 4 7 0% 13% 0%
West Ham 7.2 1.22 5 10 0% 0% 0%
Newcastle 8.5 0.89 7 11 0% 0% 0%
Aston Villa 9.3 1.65 7 13 0% 0% 0%
Crystal Palace 9.9 1.34 8 12 0% 0% 0%
Leicester 10.8 1.42 8 13 0% 0% 0%
Brighton 11.9 1.31 10 14 0% 0% 0%
Brentford 13.7 1.01 12 16 0% 0% 0%
Leeds 13.8 2.17 10 18 0% 0% 6%
Everton 15.6 1.26 14 18 0% 0% 13%
Wolverhampton 15.6 1.93 12 18 0% 0% 25%
Southampton 16.8 1.52 13 18 0% 0% 44%
Fulham 17.8 1.47 16 20 0% 0% 50%
Nottingham Forest 18.7 0.95 17 20 0% 0% 81%
Bournemouth 19.3 1.53 15 20 0% 0% 81%

Carty Free Community 2022-23 Table Predictions

TEAM MEAN ST/DEV Highest Lowest Title% Top4% Rel%
TEAM MEAN ST/DEV Highest Lowest Title% Top4% Rel%
Manchester City 1.7 2.0 1 18 71.7% 97.1% 0.1%
Liverpool 2.7 1.8 1 15 8.2% 96.7% 0.0%
Tottenham 2.9 2.6 1 20 16.6% 95.1% 2.1%
Chelsea 4.6 1.4 2 19 0.0% 60.7% 0.2%
Arsenal 5.6 2.8 1 20 2.7% 28.5% 2.8%
Manchester United 6.0 2.0 1 20 0.2% 10.8% 0.3%
West Ham 8.4 3.1 1 20 0.1% 1.0% 4.9%
Newcastle 9.2 2.7 4 19 0.0% 0.2% 1.0%
Aston Villa 9.9 2.8 1 20 0.1% 3.3% 1.0%
Leicester 10.3 2.5 4 20 0.0% 0.2% 0.7%
Crystal Palace 11.5 2.5 2 20 0.0% 0.2% 2.2%
Brighton 11.9 3.1 2 20 0.0% 0.4% 5.6%
Wolves 13.2 3.4 4 20 0.0% 0.1% 13.9%
Brentford 14.4 3.3 2 20 0.0% 1.9% 18.9%
Everton 14.9 2.8 2 20 0.0% 0.2% 19.9%
Leeds 15.2 2.9 2 20 0.0% 0.3% 23.9%
Southampton 15.7 2.6 4 20 0.0% 0.1% 26.7%
Bournemouth 17.1 3.9 1 20 0.3% 2.7% 63.1%
Fulham 17.3 2.5 6 20 0.0% 0.0% 56.4%
Forest 17.5 2.5 2 20 0.0% 0.3% 55.8%

This is a Tottenham Hotspur blog... and we’re all kind of clear-eyed

There’s a lot of synchronicity between the Masthead and the Commentariat in this year’s predictions. The only real difference at the top of the table is who’s finishing fourth; the Masthead clearly has a little more faith in Gabriel Jesus than the Commentariat, and a little less faith in Thomas Tuchel.

Once again Manchester City is tipped to win the league, and this year they got a higher first place percentage (72%) than they did last season (68%). I thought that was interesting.

Manchester City

Meanwhile, Liverpool was a clear No. 2. This is about as easy as it gets to interpret this kind of data.


Now, because this is a Tottenham Hotspur blog I expect a group of readers to have an, let’s call it “optimistic” view of Spurs’ final landing place in the table. Usually the masthead is a little more pessimistic on Spurs’ chances than the readers, but this year we’re right in sync, placing Spurs in a solid third place. Of course, those that DIDN’T vote Spurs in third almost universally voted them in second or first, which gave them a very healthy mean. Weirdly, the fifth highest votes went to Spurs in 18th, which honestly just makes me chuckle — like, if you’re going to troll on a Spurs blog’s prediction poll, why not put them 20th? A weirdly specific rating.

Tottenham Hotspur

There’s not really that much between Chelsea and Arsenal in fourth and fifth place statistically, honestly. It’s a close thing. But this is a Tottenham Hotspur blog, and so Arsenal play Thursday ‘coz they’re f—king sh—te.


For the 2nd year running y’all picked all three promoted teams to drop

And you know what? This year you might be right. Here are your three relegated teams.

18. Fulham
19. Bournemouth
20. Nottingham Forest

What’s interesting about this is that Bournemouth actually got a higher percentage of 20th place votes than either Fulham or Forest, but got enough higher placed votes to tick them up just barely into 19th. Isn’t statistics fun?

A lot of y’all are really low on Leeds this season, but I somehow think they’ll outperform what they did last season. But honestly, according to the Commentariat there’s not a lot to choose from between Leeds, Southampton, and Everton. Any one (or more) of them could slip behind one of the promoted teams this season.

Q2: Which team INSIDE the top 6 is most likely to finish OUTSIDE the top 6?

No real surprises here, as this is a Tottenham blog. Manchester United’s chaos energy offseason seems to outweigh any promise from the appointment of Erik ten Hag, at least according to our readers. More than half of respondents picked Manchester United as the most likely team to drop out of the top six. That doesn’t mean that they WILL, but if one is dropping out, they’re the most likely.

Arsenal came in as the second highest choice by random internet Spurs fans, because this is a Tottenham Hotspur blog.

Q3: Which team OUTSIDE the top 6 is most likely to finish IN the top 6?

I eliminated a bunch of the choices for purposes of this graph and it’s still a little crowded. But in case you’re having trouble distinguishing the colors, the biggest slice of pie here is West Ham, nearly half of whom our readers picked to edge into a European qualification spot this season. Next is, predictably, Newcastle — that oil money goes a long way in some readers’ minds.

After that, by a fair distance, comes Aston Villa. The biggish purple wedge, btw, is Leicester City, NOT Everton, lol.

Q4: Who will win the 2022-23 Golden Boot?

This is a Tottenham Hotspur blog. Honestly, I’m a bit surprised that Kane got so MUCH of the vote share here over Son, who had a phenomenal, actual Golden-Boot winning season last year. Unsurprisingly, Erling Haaland gets the second highest vote share; even though he’s unproven in the Premier League, he’s quite clearly a monster talent playing on a monstrously good team.

Honestly (and unfortunately), I feel like the respondents are underrating Gabriel Jesus, who I think could have much more of an impact on this season than any Spurs fans want to admit.

That itty bitty little orange wedge? Hi, Cristiano.

Incidentally, this one had an option for an “other” field, and out of the 900+ respondents, only five entered something in that box. Here are those responses, verbatim.

  • Dejan Kulusevski
  • Brendan Aaronson
  • Lloris
  • Chelsea
  • Your mum (Cartilage)

Y’all are the best.

Q5: Who will be the first Premier League manager to get sacked?

This one is fun and also a bit all over the place, but even there was a clear winner: Frank Lampard, come on down (to get fired)! Everton show every indication of being as big of a hot mess this season as they were last season, and nearly 40% of you think Fat Frank is the first to get the heave-ho this season.

Beyond that, it’s squishy. Ralph Hassenhuttl is second with 14% of the vote, which could make sense if Soton gets off to a slow start and struggles as predicted. Jesse Marsch is third, which feels more like a reflection on how Leeds finished last year; I really think Marsch will be fine.

Fourth is Mikel Arteta (this is a Tottenham Hotspur blog), and a surprising fifth is Thomas Tuchel — I honestly expected him to be higher. Bacon Sandwich gets a whopping 1.38%.

So that’s it. That’s our — and your — predictions for 2022-23. Honestly, I have a feeling we’re all going to be hilariously wrong in a lot of ways on this one, just because of the overall weirdness of the season. The World Cup is going to cause havok — players will come back exhausted, injured, and out of form. This could benefit Premier League teams that have fewer international players, or player that didn’t play many minutes in the tournament.

But that’s part of the fun! We’ll look back at this article when the season is over and see what we got right, and what we got wrong.