With the end of every Premier League season comes three new clubs making the big step up to the top tier of English football.
Last season was no doubt a strange one and I’m sure everyone is ready to put it behind them.
What better way to look to the future than by introducing the three promoted clubs.
This may be a surprise to some of you but Leeds United were an absolute powerhouse back in the day. While they have struggled for the better part of this century to make it to the top flight, Leeds actually won the Division 1 (now the Premier League) title back in 1992.
The Championship winners are back with a vengeance. Led by Brighton loan CB Ben White and captain CB Liam Cooper, the Peacocks had the fewest goals against and the most clean sheets in the Championship last season. Some of the other weapons at manager Marcelo Bielsa‘s disposal include CDM Kalvin Phillips, ST Patrick Bamford, and CAM Pablo Hernandez.
The biggest flaw of this Leeds side is the lack of a go-to striker. Yes, Bamford has been productive in the second tier, but there are questions about whether his talents translate to the EPL. He was the only double digit goal scorer for Leeds, finishing the year with 16. A short transfer window isn’t helping either.
The 2020-2021 season starts in a month and it looks like Leeds will have to work with the attackers currently on their roster. Nonetheless, Leeds is poised for a triumphant return to the top flight with a young squad that could be the start of something special.
West Bromwich Albion
West Brom makes their return to the Premier League after a two-year trip to the Championship. It is no surprise to see the Baggies back in the top flight but this time they do so with a bit of flair in their game. Brazilian international RW Matheus Pereira has been unstoppable since he signed with the club from Sporting last summer.
If ever there was an instance of one player carrying a team to promotion, this would be it.
Pereira only finished with 8 goals but his ability to create chances is unmatched. According to football365, he created the most chances per 90 minutes of any player with 23 or more starts in the Championship. Pereira will surely develop into a top goalscorer over time however for next season a major question remains about where goals will from. ST Charlie Austin leads the attack for the Baggies although he has struggled in his recent trips to the EPL.
West Brom have been linked with several strikers in recent days including Rangers star ST Alfredo Morelos. West Brom will retain most of its talent from last year and have a rising superstar ready to excel at the next level.
London’s oldest football club is back in the top flight. Fulham won the Championship play-off final with a thrilling 2-1 defeat over Brentford. The Cottagers were last promoted in 2018 but struggled in the Premier League and were sent right back down that season.
Fulham enters the EPL with a newfound sense of consistency that has been hard to come by during their topsy turvy recent campaigns. They have a young manager in Scott Parker who has been with the club since 2013 as both a player and a coach. They have experienced players like ST Aleksandar Mitrovic and LB Tom Cairney who have been a part of Fulham’s past Premier League squads. Owner Shaka Khan has made it clear that he does not want to mess with this squad too much for next year.
The most likely new Fulham signing is former Chelsea man Branislav Ivanovic who is looking to make a return to England after three years in Russia. Even at the age of 36, Ivanovic is still a viable piece in the back line and can attack if needed. Fulham has the pieces to be a mid table Premier League team in the coming years as long as they break their relegation streak next season.
It is good to see some familiar faces make their way back to the Premier League for the coming season. Leeds, West Brom, and Fulham all possess a good mix of youth talent and the experienced players that can be expected among promoted sides.
Three more competitive clubs in the Premier League; no complaints here!
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