The English Premier League is undoubtedly one of the most watched and exciting football leagues in the world.
With its captivating matches, electrifying ambiance, and passionate fans, the EPL is a league that always attracts football lovers from all over the world.
Let’s dive into the history of the English Premier League, its inception, format, and some of the most fascinating facts and figures that every fan of the EPL should know.
History of the EPL
The English Premier League officially formed in 1992, following a breakaway from the Football League First Division, which had been the top tier of English football since 1888.
The league was initially formed by 22 clubs, and its first season witnessed its first champions, Manchester United.
Since then, eleven different teams have won the EPL, and Manchester United has claimed the most league titles, with 13 wins to their name.
Format of the EPL
The Premier League currently consists of 20 teams that play each other twice – home and away – over the course of the season, resulting in a total of 38 matches for each team.
The team with the most points at the end of the season is awarded the Premier League trophy.
Along with the title, the teams that finish in the top four positions automatically qualify for the UEFA Champions League, while the team in fifth place enters the Europa League.
The teams that finish in the bottom three positions are relegated to the Championship, the second tier of English football, while the top two teams from the Championship are promoted to the Premier League.
Most Memorable Premier League Moments
1. “Agueroooooooooo!” – Manchester City Secures First EPL Title (2012)
On May 13, 2012, the Premier League title race came down to the final day of the season. Manchester City was pitted against Queens Park Rangers (QPR), and the city’s blue half knew they had to win to clinch their first Premier League title in 44 years.
The match was a see-saw affair, with QPR surprisingly leading by two goals until the 69th minute when City clawed back into the game. In stoppage time, Sergio Aguero then scored the most vital goal in City’s history, breaking QPR’s resistance and sending the Etihad Stadium into a frenzy.
2. The Invincibles (2003/2004)
Arsenal’s Invincible season is worth a mention simply because no other team in Premier League history has managed to go an entire season unbeaten.
Arsene Wenger’s team won 26 times and drew 12 to become the first and only team since Preston North End in the 19th century to achieve such a feat.
The highlight of their incredible season came when they clinched the title at White Hart Lane in style, crushing their fierce local rivals Tottenham 5-2.
3. Manchester United’s Treble-Winning Season (1998/1999)
Manchester United won a unique treble in the 1998/99 season, becoming the first and only English club to win the Premier League, FA Cup, and the UEFA Champions League in a single campaign.
Their treble-winning campaign had plenty of memorable moments, from Roy Keane’s superhuman performance against Juventus in the semi-finals of the Champions League to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s dramatic winner in the final that secured the European Cup.
4. Leicester City’s Fairytale Run to EPL Title (2015/2016)
The 2015/2016 Premier League season will forever go down in history as the year that Leicester City shocked the world by winning the league title. The Foxes were 5,000/1 outsiders at the start of the season and had narrowly avoided relegation the season before.
However, under the guidance of Claudio Ranieri and inspired by Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez, Leicester defied all the odds to clinch their first league title in an unforgettable season.
5. Ferguson’s Farewell (2012/2013)
Sir Alex Ferguson’s final game in charge of Manchester United was an emotional moment for football fans worldwide. After leading United for 26 years, Fergie announced his retirement at the end of the 2012/13 season.
His final game at Old Trafford against Swansea saw him receive a guard of honor from both teams, and he gave a moving speech to the fans who had supported him for over two decades.
Facts and Figures
The Premier League can boast of some incredible footballing records and statistics that every fan should know. Here are some notable facts and figures from the EPL:
- Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ team of 2003-04 – managed by Arsene Wenger – hold the record for going unbeaten in an entire Premier League season. They won 26 games and drew 12, totaling 90 points.
- Alan Shearer holds the record for the most Premier League goals with a whopping 260 goals throughout his career, followed by Harry Kane with 213.
- Ryan Giggs holds the record for the most Premier League appearances with an impressive 632 appearances for Manchester United.
- Manchester United also holds the record for the most Premier League hat-tricks with a total of 39. Sergio Aguero holds the record as the player with the most hat-tricks (12), during his time in Manchester City.
- Manchester City holds the record for the most points in a Premier League season, accumulating 100 points in the 2017-18 season.
- The team who holds the negative record for the least points in a Premier League season is Derby County, who finished with only 11 points in 2007-2008.
- Erling Haaland now holds the record for most goals scored in a single season. The Norwegian striker scored 36 goals, breaking Alan Shearer and Andy Cole’s records, who had scored 34.
Current Premier League Winner
Who is the Premier League current winner? Manchester City won the Premier League 2022-2023 title, completing a treble that also included the FA Cup and Champions League titles.
The Citizens finished the league with 89 points, 5 points ahead of second-place Arsenal. This was the 9th English league title for Manchester City, the 7th in the Premier League era.
In 2023-2024, Manchester City is still the favorite to win the Premier League, with Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspurs chasing them.
In conclusion, the English Premier League is more than just a football league; it is an exciting journey through history.
The league has witnessed countless memorable moments, and every season presents its fair share of unique stories, upsets, and drama.
Whether you’re a fan of one of the Premiership clubs or a neutral observer, the EPL is undeniably a league that is always worth tuning in to.
So, if you haven’t already, be sure to grab a beer, gather your friends, and immerse yourself in one of the most thrilling football leagues in the world!