Thursday 22 February 2018

Football's elite players may still reign in Spain, but the Premier League offers more intrigue

Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp. Photo: Phil Noble/Reuters
Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp. Photo: Phil Noble/Reuters

Eamonn Sweeney

Barcelona's Wednesday night humiliation of Manchester City suggested that no Premier League team currently belongs to the elite of European football. But what the Premier League can offer this season is the continent's best title race.

One reason this year's contest is so intriguing is that, while the very best players in the world continue to ply their trade in La Liga, home of eight of the 11 members of last season's FIFA world XI, the Premier League now possesses the best managers.

The close season manoeuvrings have resulted in the arrival of the most successful managers of recent times in La Liga (Pep Guardiola), Serie A (Antonio Conte) and the Premier League itself (Cranky Boots Mourinho). While Jurgen Klopp may not have won as much in the Bundesliga as Guardiola, there's a strong case to be made that his achievements in overcoming Bayern Munich's massive advantages to bag two titles with Borussia Dortmund makes him that league's outstanding manager of modern times.

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