Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

REID | Midseason Premier League Awards and Predictions


Although Manchester City’s three consecutive titles in England’s top football league left many thinking the 2023-24 Premier League (PL) campaign would be less competitive than years prior, the first half of the season has told a different tale. First place has changed hands four times, 10 different clubs have been in the top five at some point and five clubs sit within just six points of each other atop the Premier League table. Here are my awards to recognize the PL’s outstanding midseason performers, and my predictions for the second half of the 23-24 campaign. 

Midseason Awards

Player of the Midseason: Mohamed Salah

Mo Salah leads the league in goal contributions with 22 — 14 scored himself and 8 assisted — four more than last year’s PFA Player of the Year Erling Haaland. Involved in over 50% of Liverpool’s goals this season, Salah has been indispensable to the team’s league-leading attack. What defines Salah is his consistent greatness. He’s appeared in 19 of Liverpool’s 20 games and has accrued a league-best seven man of the match awards. Other players, including Tottenham’s James Maddison or Manchester City’s Rodrigo and Haaland, have played just as well at times, but haven’t stayed as healthy or performed as consistently as the Egyptian has thus far.

Manager of the Midseason: Unai Emery 

After taking over the reins of Aston Villa in October 2022, Unai Emery has moved the Midlands side from a relegation position to joint second at the midseason point. With nine wins and one draw in 10 home games, Emery has turned Villa Park into the most formidable away ground in the PL. Villa’s squad hasn’t really changed since Emery took over; rather, he’s been able to harness the upside of his forwards in his trademark fast, counter-attacking style of football. Emery punctuated his brilliant start to the 23-24 campaign with a dominant rout of reigning champion Manchester City in December, outshooting City 22 to 1 in a statement 1-0 win. Bournemouth’s Andoni Iraola also deserves credit, as he has taken the club from 19th to 12th after gaining 22 of a possible 30 points in an eight-week span from late October to midseason.

Disappointment of the Midseason: Chelsea
Since Chelsea’s acquisition by American businessman Todd Boehly in 2022, the club has spent over $1 billion in signings, twice as much as any other club. However, they currently sit ninth in the league table. Recent signings Enzo Fernández, Moisés Caicedo and Mykhailo Mudryk are simply not performing up to the standard that their $100+ million price tags warrant. Tactically, Chelsea resembles a leaderless hodgepodge of randomly assembled players. Don’t be surprised if manager Mauricio Pochettino gets the sack before the season ends. 

@AVFCOfficial/X | In this edition of “Between the Lines,” Owen Reid (CAS ’26) provides a midseason update on the English Premier League and predictions for the rest of the exciting season.


Top Four: 1. Manchester City, 2. Liverpool, 3. Arsenal, 4. Tottenham

Manchester City will win a fourth consecutive league title. Last season, Guardiola’s men trailed the top spot at the midway point of the PL, so I expect the club to overcome the current three-point gap to claim the 23-24 title. City is a considerably deeper squad compared to Liverpool and Arsenal. With the return of Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne imminent, City likely hasn’t peaked yet this year. A fourth consecutive PL win will earn Guardiola manager of the season and plant him squarely in the greatest-of-all-time PL manager debates. 

The rest of the top four is less clear to me. Liverpool does not have the depth to compete seriously in the Champions League, FA Cup and PL, and with Mo Salah leaving for the African Cup of Nations, Liverpool may struggle in the first weeks of the second half, leaving room for Arsenal and Tottenham to gain ground. The London clubs’ lack of European football will allow them to concentrate their efforts on the domestic league. Expect Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka to challenge for a consecutive Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Young Player of the Year award. Aston Villa won’t challenge for a top four position — I expect that injuries and European football will lead to struggles away from home in the PL. Clubs currently outside the top five will not make late climbs into the Champions League spots. 

PFA Player of the Season: Rodri

If Erling Haaland didn’t produce a record-breaking 2023, Rodri would’ve likely been City’s player of the year. The Spaniard’s consistency and quality has been unparalleled in the midfield position so far this season. With 4 goals and 3 assists, Rodri’s superior passing completion percentage and high game I.Q. has yielded him the highest average match rating of any PL player according to FotMob. When Rodri has played this season, Manchester City has not lost a game in all competitions in the 23-24 season. As other elite City players struggle with injuries, Rodri will emerge as City’s most important player and the PFA Player of the Season.  

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