The end of the season is coming to a close, so it’s time to grab your pitchforks and point the blame. Fans (and the media) blame everything from the players who didn’t live up to expectations to the crumby officials and schedule. But most of the time it falls on one person: the manager. Usually at this time of year we would see a couple of managers come under fire, but right now it’s all being dumped on one poor soul: Arsene Wenger.
But a change in manager isn’t the only change we see around now. It’s that time of the year when big clubs start licking their lips and smaller clubs start pleading with their stars. With the transfer season among us, it’s now or never to abandon the sinking ships and hop on the bandwagon.
With so much going, here are the odds for which managers and players stay, and which will go.
The Managers: EPL Managers Odds
Manchester United are currently fifth, which is nothing to celebrate for the most successful English club. But compared to their other performances post-Ferguson, the current Man U squad is actually doing pretty well. Mourinho broke the bank by bringing in Paul Pogba, who hasn’t exactly lived up to expectation but is still doing a decent job. And the addition of Zlatan Ibrahimovic has done wonders for the attack.
Under Mourinho, Man United are on track to win Europa and have a real chance of finishing in the top four. His job seems pretty safe to me.
Odds Jose Mourinho is Man United manager by year-end 2018: 1/9
By Guardiola’s standards, this season has been a failure. Manchester City are currently fourth in the league and suffered a Round of 16 elimination in the Champions League. Compare that to the league titles and Champions League trophies he won under Barcelona and Bayern Munich, and you’ve got a pretty dismal year.
His rocky introduction to the Premier League is disappointing for fans and the ownership alike, but he seems to be in it for the long-haul. I think we’ll see a return and an improvement from him next season.
Odds Pep Guardiola is Man City manager by year-end 2018: 3/7
There were a couple of times this season when Jurgen Klopp deserved a fair amount of criticism. But his passion and charisma makes it hard to dislike him. He seems to have the full support of the fans and players, and at third place, I can’t see him leaving any time soon.
Odds Jurgen Klopp is Liverpool manager by year-end 2018: 3/7
Wenger has been with the Gunners for over 20 years and has never ended a season outside of the top four. That could all change this season. Arsenal are currently in sixth place, trailing fourth by seven points with only seven games left to play.
There’s still hope for the perennial top-four finishers, but from what we’ve seen from them lately, it’s looking pretty unlikely.
There’s a large fraction of the Arsenal fanbase committed to removing Wenger from the club. Chants of “Arsene Wenger we want you to go” and “We want Wenger out” are commonplace at both home and away games.
Wenger has claimed to have already decided whether he’ll stay, but he hasn’t said a peep since. I think we might hear from him after the FA Cup clash against Man City, and the result will probably influence his decision despite what he’s already said.
Odds Arsene Wenger is Arsenal manager by year-end 2018: 2/3
David Moyes just can’t seem to catch a break. After ending his eleven-year tenure at Everton, the volatile Scot has steered club after club into the ground. First, it was Manchester United, where he didn’t even last a season. Then it was Real Sociedad, where he stayed for about a year.
Now he’s at Sunderland, facing almost certain relegation. I think it’s time for Sunderland to make like the others and cut their losses.
Odds David Moyes is Sunderland manager by year-end 2018: 11/9
The Players: 2017-18 Season Transfer Odds
Alexis Sanchez has stalled on signing a new contract with Arsenal, and with good reason. Sanchez has given his all for the Gunners this season and has very little to show for it. The most persistent rumor is that he will sign for Paris Saint-Germain. Another possibility is a signing with Chelsea.
Unless the Gunners offer the aging striker an ungodly amount of money, I think he’ll pack his bags and leave.
Mesut Ozil is in a very similar position to his teammate Alexis Sanchez. He seems to be deeply unhappy at Arsenal and there are rumors that PSG are trying to reel him in. He recently received an offer from the Chinese Super League, but fortunately he declined it. The German playmaker should have at least a few more seasons playing soccer at the highest level.
Chinese Super League: 19/1
Romelu Lukaku will probably end the season as the Premier League’s top goalscorer. And his future at Everton is looking increasingly feeble. The 23-year-old has his eyes on the Champions League and a player of his calibre deserves to play at a bigger club. His former team (Chelsea) is looking pretty enticing, and AC Milan and Man Utd have also expressed interest.
Manchester United: 17/3
AC Milan: 19/1
Despite claiming that his future is with Atletico Madrid, rumors surrounding Griezmann’s transfer to Manchester United continue to flourish. Money is seemingly no object for United, so I think we should take these rumors seriously. It would be a huge loss for Atleti and a monumental gain for Man U, but let’s not jump to conclusions before the paperwork is signed.
Atletico Madrid: 2/3
Manchester United: 3/2
The 36-year-old John Terry is somehow making headlines again. A few Premier League teams, like West Ham and Bournemouth, have expressed interest in the former English star. And Terry is weighing up his options. The Chinese Super League is also available to him as well. A few seasons there and he can retire with more money than he’ll know what to do with. His experience and leadership alone make him an asset to any team he signs for.
West Ham: 4/1
Crystal Palace: 4/1
Chinese Super League: 9/1