Premier League predictions 2019-20: How accurate were the BBC Sport pundits?

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Almost 12 months ago, 24 BBC TV and radio pundits made their predictions for the Premier League season, picking their champions and their top four.

Sounds easy? Far from it. None of them got it exactly right.

Although eight pundits correctly picked Liverpool as champions, only Ruud Gullit got all four teams - and they were all in the wrong order.

Matthew Upson deserves applause for getting three out of the four in their correct positions and another 10 pundits included three correct picks overall.

You can see everyone's pre-season top-four predictions in full, below.

Snapshot showing the top four of the Premier League: 1st Liverpool, 2nd Man City, 3rd Man Utd, 4th Chelsea

So, why was it so hard to choose Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea to finish in that order?

Tottenham's turbulent campaign after four consecutive top-four finishes caught 22 people out, as did the rapid demise of Arsenal's revival under former boss Unai Emery after a promising first year in charge and some exciting summer signings - 13 of the 24 thought they would make it.

Similarly, only six pundits expected Frank Lampard to make it into the Champions League places in his first season as Chelsea manager, especially as the club were under a transfer embargo and had just sold Eden Hazard when he was appointed last summer.

United's return to form in 2020 under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also surprised pretty much everyone.

At the start of the season, only seven pundits thought they would make the top four, including Karen Carney, who was the only person to correctly predict them to make the top three.

Not many people reading this can truthfully say they knew much better, though.

Thousands of you made your predictions for the way the table would finish on the BBC website last August, and two-thirds of the voters picked City as champions, followed by Liverpool, Spurs and United in second, third and fourth.

Better luck next time, everyone.

BBC pundits' predictions for the 2019-20 Premier League
Predictor1st2nd3rd4th
Ian WrightLiverpool Man CityTottenham Arsenal
Alex ScottLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamArsenal
Sue SmithLiverpoolMan CityTottenham Arsenal
Martin KeownLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamArsenal
Stephen WarnockLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamArsenal
Danny MurphyLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamMan Utd
Alan ShearerLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamMan Utd
Matthew UpsonLiverpoolMan CityTottenhamChelsea
Ruud GullitMan CityChelseaLiverpoolMan Utd
Karen CarneyMan CityLiverpoolMan UtdArsenal
Mark SchwarzerMan CityLiverpoolChelseaTottenham
Jermaine JenasMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Paul InceMan CityLiverpoolTottenham Arsenal
Chris SuttonMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Leon OsmanMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Pat NevinMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Michael BrownMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Mark LawrensonMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamArsenal
Micah RichardsMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamMan Utd
Lindsay JohnsonMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamMan Utd
Kevin KilbaneMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamMan Utd
Rachel Brown-FinnisMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamChelsea
Chris WaddleMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamChelsea
Joleon LescottMan CityLiverpoolTottenhamChelsea

The pundits' predictions were made on the basis of how each squad shaped up on Thursday, 8 August, after the deadline for incoming transfers but with the potential for players to leave up until the transfer window shut in the rest of Europe at the end of August.

Six teams featured in the forecasted top fours, and only Manchester City and Liverpool featured in all 24.

In terms of who would win it, Manchester City were favourites, with 16 votes. Liverpool got the other eight.

Overall predicted positions, using all BBC pundit predictions
(using system of 4 pts for a 1st place, 3 pts for 2nd, 2 pts for 3rd and 1 pt for 4th)
1. Man City2. Liverpool3. Tottenham4. Arsenal5. Chelsea6. Man Utd
88 pts79 pts43 pts13 pts9 pts8 pts
Overall predicted position from BBC website user predictions
Positions determined by number of times those teams were selected to finish in that place
1. Man City2. Liverpool3. Tottenham4. Man Utd5. Arsenal6. Chelsea

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