The longest winning runs to start a Premier League season

Date published: Wednesday 21st October 2020 8:16

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Aston Villa and Everton have embarked on two of the longest winning starts to a Premier League season ever in 2020/21.

In a development each of us saw coming, Everton currently top the table after four successive victories and a draw against Liverpool on Saturday, with Aston Villa second after winning each of their games.

Carlo Ancelotti has been here before in terms of strong starts to a campaign, while Dean Smith needs to beat Leeds, Southampton, Arsenal, Brighton, West Ham and Newcastle to set a new record. Easy enough.

 

Aston Villa (4 wins, 2020/21)

Who did they beat?
Sheffield United (1-0), Fulham (0-3), Liverpool (7-2), Leicester (0-1)

Who stopped them?
Who can?

Where did they finish?
Wherever Ross Barkley says it’s alright to.

 

Everton (4 wins, 2020/21)

Who did they beat?
Tottenham (0-1), West Brom (5-2), Crystal Palace (1-2), Brighton (4-2)

Who stopped them?
Liverpool, with a 2-2 draw at Goodison Park.

Where did they finish?
Who bloody knows.

 

Watford (4 wins, 2018/19)

Who did they beat?
Brighton (2-0), Burnley (1-3), Crystal Palace (2-1), Tottenham (2-1)

Who stopped them?
Manchester United, with a 2-1 win at Vicarage Road.

Where did they finish?
11th and as thoroughly shellacked FA Cup finalists. It was enough to earn Javi Gracia a new contract by late November 2018, much like their latent collapse was sufficient for his sacking in early September 2019.

 

Chelsea (4 wins, 2014/15)

Who did they beat?
Burnley (1-3), Leicester (2-0), Everton (3-6), Swansea (4-2)

Who stopped them?
Manchester City, with a 1-1 draw at the Etihad Stadium.

Where did they finish?
As champions. Chelsea topped the Premier League table after beating Burnley on the opening weekend, and did not relinquish that spot for a single week in Jose Mourinho’s final full season.

 

Manchester City (4 wins, 2011/12)

Who did they beat?
Swansea (4-0), Bolton (2-3), Tottenham (1-5), Wigan (3-0)

Who stopped them?
Fulham, with a 2-2 draw at Craven Cottage.

Where did they finish?
As champions. Edin Dzeko scored six times and Sergio Aguero netted four in the opening four games of Manchester City’s heart-stopping first Premier League title win.

 

Tottenham (4 wins, 2009/10)

Who did they beat?
Liverpool (2-1), Hull (1-5), West Ham (1-2), Birmingham (2-1)

Who stopped them?
Manchester United, with a 3-1 win at Old Trafford.

Where did they finish?
Fourth. After a series of close calls, Harry Redknapp finally took an exciting, attacking Spurs side into the Champions League.

 

Manchester United (4 wins, 2006/07)

Who did they beat?
Fulham (5-1), Charlton (3-0), Watford (2-1), Tottenham (1-0)

Who stopped them?
Arsenal, with a 1-0 win at Old Trafford.

Where did they finish?
As champions. Chelsea finished second, six points behind, but exacted a measure of revenge in the FA Cup final.

 

Charlton (4 wins, 2005/06)

Who did they beat?
Sunderland (1-3), Wigan (1-0), Middlesbrough (0-3), Birmingham (0-1)

Who stopped them?
Chelsea, with a 2-0 win at The Valley.

Where did they finish?
13th. A solid 30% of their entire Premier League wins this season came in their opening four fixtures.

 

Chelsea (4 wins, 2004/05)

Who did they beat?
Manchester United (1-0), Birmingham (0-1), Crystal Palace (0-2), Southampton (2-1)

Who stopped them?
Aston Villa, with a 0-0 draw at Villa Park.

Where did they finish?
As champions. Chelsea were completely and utterly dominant in Jose Mourinho’s first season in charge, losing once and conceding just 15 times in 38 Premier League games.

 

Arsenal (4 wins, 2003/04)

Who did they beat?
Everton (2-1), Middlesbrough (0-4), Aston Villa (2-0), Manchester City (1-2)

Who stopped them?
Portsmouth, with a 1-1 draw at Highbury.

Where did they finish?
As champions. The Invincibles wasted little time in sending out an emphatic message to their rivals.

 

Sheffield Wednesday (4 wins, 1996/97)

Who did they beat?
Aston Villa (2-1), Leeds (2-0), Newcastle (2-1), Leicester (2-1)

Who stopped them?
Chelsea, with a 2-0 win at Stamford Bridge.

Where did they finish?
Seventh. The Owls “started off like a bomb”, as manager David Pleat once recalled, thanks to the precocious brilliance of Ritchie Humphreys. They recovered from a mid-season blip to equal their highest ever Premier League finish.

 

Newcastle (4 wins, 1995/96)

Who did they beat?
Coventry (3-0), Bolton (1-3), Sheffield Wednesday (0-2), Middlesbrough (1-0)

Who stopped them?
Southampton, with a 1-0 win at The Dell.

Where did they finish?
Second. You know the story.

 

Chelsea (5 wins, 2018/19)

Who did they beat?
Huddersfield (0-3), Arsenal (3-2), Newcastle (1-2), Bournemouth (2-0), Cardiff (4-1)

Who stopped them?
West Ham, with a 0-0 draw at the London Stadium.

Where did they finish?
Third. Maurizio Sarri even added a Europa League trophy to his non-existent collection but Chelsea could not resist the temptation to bring a proper coach in like Frank Lampard.

 

Manchester City (5 wins, 2015/16)

Who did they beat?
West Brom (0-3), Chelsea (3-0), Everton (0-2), Watford (2-0), Crystal Palace (0-1)

Who stopped them?
West Ham with a 2-1 win at the Etihad Stadium.

Where did they finish?
Fourth. Five wins and five clean sheets from the opening five games was a distant memory by the time City meekly surrendered the initiative in the title race, weighed down by the impending arrival of Pep Guardiola.

 

Manchester United (5 wins, 2011/12)

Who did they beat?
West Brom (1-2), Tottenham (3-0), Arsenal (8-2), Bolton (0-5), Chelsea (3-1)

Who stopped them?
Stoke, with a 1-1 draw at the Britannia Stadium.

Where did they finish?
Second. A close second, certainly.

 

Chelsea (5 wins, 2010/11)

Who did they beat?
West Brom (6-0), Wigan (0-6), Stoke (2-0), West Ham (1-3), Blackpool (4-0)

Who stopped them?
Manchester City, with a 1-0 win at the Etihad Stadium.

Where did they finish?
Second. Not good enough. Ancelotti out.

 

Arsenal (5 wins, 2004/05)

Who did they beat?
Everton (1-4), Middlesbrough (5-3), Blackburn (3-0), Norwich (1-4), Fulham (0-3)

Who stopped them?
Bolton, with a 2-2 draw at Highbury.

Where did they finish?
Second. Jose Antonio Reyes scored in each of Arsenal’s first five games, but Chelsea eventually pulled clear at the top.

 

Liverpool (6 wins, 2018/19)

Who did they beat?
West Ham (4-0), Crystal Palace (0-2), Brighton (1-0), Leicester (1-2), Tottenham (1-2), Southampton (3-0)

Who stopped them?
Chelsea, with a 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge.

Where did they finish?
Second. The greatest runners-up ever. And as European champions. Not bad.

 

Manchester City (6 wins, 2016/17)

Who did they beat?
Sunderland (2-1), Stoke (1-4), West Ham (3-1), Manchester United (1-2), Bournemouth (4-0), Swansea (1-3)

Who stopped them?
Tottenham, with a 2-0 win at White Hart Lane.

Where did they finish?
Third. Pep Guardiola equalled Carlo Ancelotti’s Premier League record managerial start of six consecutive wins, but could not match his subsequent instant success.

 

Chelsea (6 wins, 2009/10)

Who did they beat?
Hull (2-1), Sunderland (1-3), Fulham (0-2), Burnley (3-0), Stoke (1-2), Tottenham (3-0)

Who stopped them?
Wigan, with a 3-1 win at the DW Stadium.

Where did they finish?
As champions. And FA Cup winners. And losers in the Champions League to eventual European conquerors Inter Milan. Not bad, really.

 

Newcastle (6 wins, 1994/95)

Who did they beat?
Leicester (1-3), Coventry (4-0), Southampton (5-1), West Ham (1-3), Chelsea (4-2), Arsenal (2-3)

Who stopped them?
Liverpool, with a 1-1 draw at St James’ Park.

Where did they finish?
Sixth. After nine wins in their first 11 Premier League games came 11 in their next 31.

 

 

Liverpool (8 wins, 2019/20)

Who did they beat?
Norwich (4-1), Southampton (2-1), Arsenal (3-1), Burnley (3-0), Newcastle (3-1), Chelsea (2-1), Sheffield United (1-0), Leicester (2-1)

Who stopped them?
Manchester United, with a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford.

Where did they finish?
As run-away champions.

 

Chelsea (9 wins, 2005/06)

Who did they beat?
Wigan (0-1), Arsenal (1-0), West Brom (4-0), Tottenham (0-2), Sunderland (2-0), Charlton (0-2), Aston Villa (2-1), Liverpool (1-4), Bolton (5-1)

Who stopped them?
Everton, with a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.

Where did they finish?
As champions. Remember when Luke Moore was the first person to score against Chelsea in 641 minutes of Premier League football?

Matt Stead

 

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