I think we need to start with the biggest failure in the league, and that has to be, without a doubt, Queens Park Rangers (QPR). QPR finished bottom of the league on 25 points, winning only four, yes four of their 38 league games. At the start of the season, I felt they made good signings, but that it would take a little bit of time for them to gel and work together. However, it never happened all season, and Mark Hughes can’t take full blame, because even after he left, they brought in Harry Redknapp, and they still performed the same way, like they had already given up. The players must take blame for their season, and not trying throughout it, as they went on a winless streak of 16 games. My hope now is that Harry stays with them through The Championship, brings them up as a team, and not as individual players, which I’m very sure he’s capable of doing.
Another big failure for me was the Tyne-Wear derby duo of Newcastle and Sunderland. Both finished just above relegation. Newcastle were a much bigger failure for me, as they had performed well the previous season, and I expected them to build on that as they brought in more talent to their side, but it didn’t quite work. Maybe a change of manager should have happened during the season, as the results weren’t coming, but after giving Alan Pardew a 6-year-deal (which is a stupid decision), it’s hard to let him go. Finishing the season in 16th place is not where anyone would have predicted Newcastle to end up.
Sunderland didn’t perform well all season, and it was surprising as they had a great manager in Martin O’Neill. It didn’t quite work for them, as their star players wouldn’t perform, apart from Steven Fletcher. I feel they left it too late to really progress in the season when they let O’Neill go and brought in controversial manager Paolo Di Canio. After his first wins against Newcastle and Everton, they didn’t do much, losing to another struggling team Aston Villa, 6-1. They went on to finish in 17th place, and I suppose it’s what Di Canio was brought in to do, keep them safe, now to build on that next season with his own players will be an interesting watch. Despite Mignolet having 11 clean sheets, and an amazing season, they still managed to find themselves down near the bottom, through a lack of goals up front.