Listening Practice: Who will win the 2015-16 Premier League?

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Premier League This season’s Premier League has turned into one of the most open and exciting in many years. Few would have tipped Leicester City to be joint top after 22 games or Chelsea to be struggling – we certainly didn’t way back in August. On this week’s listening practice report we wonder which team will win this season’s Premier League title. You can listen to the report by clicking on the link above, and you can also read the transcript of the report (below). There are also explanations of key vocabulary (in bold) at the end of the post.

Listening Practice: Who will win the 2015-16 Premier League?

We are over half way through the English Premier League season and still we are no closer to knowing which team will be champions in May. Seven points separate the top five teams with 16 games to go so let’s take a look at the title challengers.

Arsenal

The London side have not won the Premier League trophy since 2004 but are in a great position to win their 14th league title this season. Despite missing key players such as Sanchez, Coquelin and Wiltshire, they are currently top on goal difference and will fancy their chances of holding on to first place come the end of the season. Star player for the Gunners has been Mesut Ă–zil who has provided the most assists – that’s 16 in 18 games – this season. Their next few games all appear winnable but they face a tough ten days in February/March with matches against Leicester, Manchester United, Tottenham and Barcelona in the Champions League. If they get through that period unscathed then Arsenal fans may well be celebrating before their penultimate match against Manchester City in May.

Leicester City

Not even the most optimistic Leicester City fan could have expected their team to be joint top of the Premier League after 22 games. The Foxes have only lost twice this season – home to Arsenal and away at Liverpool – and despite many pundits tipping them to falter, their tough defense and swift counter-attacking style has proved to be a winning combination. Their next set of fixtures sees them up against Stoke City, Manchester City, Liverpool and Arsenal but if they were to come through those tough games then why can’t the team who miraculously escaped relegation last season dream about Champions League qualification or even winning the title for the first time in the club’s history?

Manchester City

With holders Chelsea struggling this season, it appeared open for Manchester City to stroll to the title but the blue-half of Manchester has struggled to find any consistency this season. Their cause has not been helped by injuries to key players – most notably Sergio AgĂĽero, David Silva and the club captain Vincent Kompany  – but they are still only a point off the top of the table. They will also have Champions League games to contend with so their expensively-assembled squad will be tested but for many ‘experts’ City are still favourites to lift the trophy.

Tottenham

Spurs have not won the league title since 1961, only their second ever, so the north London side do not have the experience needed for title challenges or run-ins. However, the youngest squad in the division find themselves four points adrift of first place and very much part of the title race. They have a settled squad, a strong back four and a manager who the players seem to enjoy playing for. They have also been slightly fortunate with injuries and will be hoping this continues until the end of the season, particularly with leading scorer Harry Kane.

Manchester United

After Louis Van Gaal’s side beat Liverpool at Anfield in what can only be described as a smash and grab victory at the weekend the manager suggested that the Red Devils can still win the title. Fans and pundits alike lament the style of play that the Dutch manager has instilled at the club yet they are only 7 points behind the leaders and have winners throughout the team. They also have the easiest run-in on paper  so they cannot be ruled out at all.

Predictions

There will be many ups and downs before the title is decided but it surely has to be between City and Arsenal though Leicester and Spurs fans can still dream on for a little while longer.

  1. Manchester City
  2. Arsenal
  3. Tottenham
  4. Manchester United
  5. Leicester City

Let us now what you think by posting your prediction below.

Vocabulary

on goal difference: Teams who are level on points are separated by goal difference, i.e. goals scored minus goals against (For example, a team has scored 20 and conceded 18 has a goal difference of +2).

will fancy their chances of: Think they can win

come the end: At the end

all appear winnable: They should win these games

unscathed: Undefeated

penultimate match: Second last game

joint top: Two teams are top of the table

The Foxes: The nickname of Leicester City

to falter: To fail, fall

to stroll to the title: To easily win

most notably: Especially

a point off the top of the table: They have one point less than the leaders

to contend with: To deal with

four points adrift of first place: 4 points behind the leaders

settled squad: Not too many changes and players appear to be happy

a smash and grab victory: United defended all game and with their only shot they won the match

lament: Voice their disapproval; they do not like it very much

run-in: The last few games of the season

 

 

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2015-16Episode 289