After correctly predicting the Champions, Runners-up and the Golden Glove winner of the last season, Prothom Alo English's Quamrul Hassan has once again been tasked to predict the major outcomes of the 2018-19 season that kicks off on Friday with Manchester United taking on Leicester City.
Champions: Manchester City
Pep Guardiola's boys smashed records after records last season as they were neck and shoulder above the other teams, strolling to the title with five games to spare. They were the first Premier League team to hit the 100-point mark, recorded the most wins (32), most away wins (16) and the most consecutive league wins (18) besides hitting the most goals (106) and maintaining the highest goal difference (+79).
It will not be the same this season with Liverpool bolstering their squad with some big signings, but Guardiola is a serial winner and the acquisition of Riyad Mahrez mean he has more attacking options besides key men Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne. It remains to be seen if Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling can replicate their last season's form, although 70% of that would be enough for the Citizens.
Liverpool boasted a deadly attack even after Philippe Coutinho's departure to Barcelona as the attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino made them the second highest-scoring team (84) of the last season. Their goal difference (+46) was better than second-placed Manchester United (+40) and third-placed Tottenham Hotspur (+38) and the Kops lost fewer games than these two (five against their seven each), yet they had to finish fourth as they drew as many as 12 games.
But this season won't be the same. With Alisson Becker between the sticks and Virgil van Dijk marshalling the defense, Liverpool can hope World Cup finalist Dejan Lovren's game will improve and the likes of Andrew Robertson and Trent Alexander-Arnold will make a solid defence.
They have also brought in the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri, Fabinho and Naby Keita, and they will certainly give City a run for their money.
Third: Manchester United
Rumours had it that Pual Pogba would be leaving Old Trafford for Barcelona, but now that the Frenchman is staying, Jose Mourinho's men are still a great side. The pre-season have not been the most ideal for the Red Devils, but one may wonder if it was a mind game The Special One had been playing all along. Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku will be key but they probably needed a solid centre-back.
It remains to be seen how new signing Fred gels with other midfielders while Jesse Lingard and Marcus Rashford will have to play their part.
This will probably be the season when Pogba shows his true worth to the United faithful.
The Blues lost World Cup Golden Glove winning goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois to Real Madrid after some drama, yet they will be content seeing Eden Hazard staying put. They paid the record fee for a goalkeeper by bringing in Kepa Arrizabalaga (71 million pounds) while the loan deal for Mateo Kovacic mean they have a midfield that will be hard to break, with new signing Jorginho and World Cup winner N'Golo Kante also there.
They may still need a striker during the winter transfer window should Alvaro Morata fail to spark, like the last season. Maurizio Sarri will need to spend his first season building a team for the future.
Golden Boot: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal)
The Gabon striker hit 10 goals in 13 matches last season after Arsenal signed him from Borussia Dortmund, for whom he had scored 13 in 16 games in the first half of the season. The Bundesliga Golden Boot winner of the 2016-17 season has developed a sound understanding with fellow Gunner striker Alexandre Lacazette while having assist-king Mesut Ozil and someone like Henrikh Mkhitaryan behind him boosts his chances of hitting the 30-goal mark.
Golden Glove: David De Gea (Manchester United)
Last season's Golden Glove winner is likely to retain the award unless his form takes a nosedive. Tight defence is one of the key features of a Jose Mourinho side and Manchester United will once again be a defence hard to crack.