Last season, the English Premier League (EPL) was colored by the sky of Manchester City, which achieved a treble with three consecutive losses. However, the landscape of the 2023-2024 season has changed. Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal FC, the protagonists of the North London derby, entered the EPL rankings based on perfect performances.
Tottenham took the sole lead in the league with a 1-0 win against Luton Town in the 8th round of the 2023-2024 EPL held at Kenilworth Road Stadium in England on the 7th (Korean time). Actually, the game that day was difficult. They wasted many scoring chances and were tied 0-0, and were outnumbered due to the sending off of midfielder Yves Bissouma in extra time in the first half. Bissouma fell near the opposition penalty area to draw a foul. The referee judged Bissouma’s action to be a simulation and gave him a warning for unsporting behavior, and Bissouma, who had already been warned once, was sent off due to the accumulated warnings.
Tottenham, who showed a better performance in the first half, played the second half with 10 players, and at the start of the second half, Richarlison was removed and Emile-Pierre Hojbjerg was brought in to fill Bissouma’s absence. They gave up the initiative due to being outnumbered, and the result was achieved through a set-piece attack, which was the best opportunity to score. In the 7th minute of the second half, he attempted a quick corner kick and scored the winning goal. Mickey van der Pen scored after receiving a cutback from James Maddison to take the lead.
Afterwards, until the end of the second half, center backs Christian Romero and Van der Pen played a leading role in stopping Luton Town’s onslaught. We scored three valuable points in a difficult match. With this win, they moved up to the top of the league, but it was expected that Tottenham’s first place would not last long as Manchester City still has a game against Arsenal. However, Arsenal won 1-0 with Gabriel Martinelli’s winning goal in the 41st minute of the second half in the home game against Manchester City held at the Emirates Stadium in London, England on the 9th, and Tottenham maintained the lead. They tied with Arsenal with 20 points (6 wins, 2 draws), and continued to be at the top of the league table, leading in multiple goals (Tottenham 18 goals, Arsenal 16 goals).
Before the season, Tottenham seemed far from the championship title. The team was entrusted to coach Enzi Postecoglou, who had no experience leading a major European club, and with the departure of ‘key gun’ Harry Kane, challenging the Champions League seemed like a realistic goal. However, once the season started, they performed better than expected and jumped to the top. By building a powerful force, they took first place in the mid-term rankings, beating Manchester City, who were expected to win the title for four consecutive seasons. Stability has been regained in both defense and attack. The defensive wall was made more solid by recruiting Van der Pen to replace Eric Dier, who was showing signs of instability, and Son Heung-min was appointed as a striker in Kane’s absence to add structure to the attack. By recruiting playmaker Madison, they are creating a creative attack.
Tottenham’s north London rival Arsenal also attempted unconventional changes ahead of this season. They paid a huge transfer fee to bring in midfielder Declan Rice from West Ham United. Rice is playing very well in every game, preventing any talk of the transfer fee being high. In addition, Julian Timber, Kai Havertz, and David Raya were recruited to fill the necessary positions, perfectly embodying the ‘5th year’ of Mikel Arteta’s football.
Because it is still early in the season, it is too early to predict the final rankings, but the performance of the two North London teams is shaking up the EPL landscape. If Tottenham and Arsenal win the championship, they can stop Manchester City’s four-game losing streak in the league. Tottenham won the EPL for the first time, and Arsenal won the championship for the first time in 20 years since the 2003-2004 season.
On the other hand, defending champion Manchester City lost 1-2 in an away game against Wolverhampton Wanderers on the 30th of last month after giving up the winning goal to Hwang Hee-chan, and was caught by Arsenal, losing two games in a row and sinking to third place in the league. Key midfielder Kevin De Bruyne is scheduled to return in December, so the challenge of winning four consecutive league titles will not be easy.
Manchester United, which ranked 3rd in the league last season with Dutch tactician Erik ten Haag at the helm, won the League Cup, and Newcastle United, which ranked 4th thanks to the outstanding tactics of ‘Oil Money’ and Eddie Howe, rebounded under manager Pochettino. Chelsea, the traditional powerhouse they are aiming for, fell into a slump at the beginning of the season. 레고토토
Manchester United is struggling with key players including Lisandro Martinez, Raphael Varane, Luke Shaw, Tyrrell Malasia and Aaron Wan-Bissaka all leaving due to injury. To make matters worse, there were even rumors of a feud between Jadon Sancho and Ten Haag, and the team atmosphere took a turn for the worst. Fortunately, the immediate fire was extinguished by Scott McTominay’s two goals in extra time in the previous game against Brentford FC, which resulted in a victory, but in order to look to greater heights, recovery of performance along with the return of key players from injuries is essential.
Newcastle United also lost all of its matches against strong teams such as Liverpool and Manchester City at the beginning of the season, accumulating only 13 points (4 wins, 1 draw, 3 losses). In the Champions League, they caused an upset by defeating Paris Saint-Germain, where Lee Kang-in plays, 4-1, but they remain in 8th place in the league. Chelsea, who appointed coach Pochettino ahead of this season, failed to win a single game in the league in September and only achieved one win. They won both games held this month and went on a two-game winning streak, jumping up to 11th place with 11 points (3 wins, 2 draws, 3 losses), but they are still in the middle of the rankings.
Meanwhile, Aston Villa, led by coach Unai Emery, the ‘King of Europa’, and Brighton Hove Albion, led by Roberto De Zerbi, who won a ticket to the European competition 122 years after its founding last season, made a sensation and ranked 5th and 6th. They are doing well, proving that there is no longer an eternal powerhouse in the EPL. He became the protagonist of an unexpected rebellion at the beginning of the season, adding to the fun of the EPL.