TEAMtalk Editor Simon Wilkes kicks off our 2012-13 season predictions and expects more Mancunian dominance as well as woe for Wigan Athletic.
Premier League top six: Manchester United, Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham.
We all know that Sir Alex Ferguson loves a challenge - and seeing the Premier League crown snatched from his grasp by Sergio Aguero's last-gasp heroics against QPR will ensure the Scot is more fired up than ever.
Only Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell have been added to the Red Devils' roster as I write this - but the return to fitness of defensive giant Nemanja Vidic and midfield dynamo Tom Cleverley, coupled with Danny Welbeck's continued emergence as a top-class striker, give United the edge in my eyes.
It'll go to the wire again, though, with defending champions City pushing United all the way, only to win the silver medal this time around.
Hot on their heels will be London boys Arsenal and Chelsea, who have splashed the cash this summer in a bid to close the yawning points gap from last season, when the men from Manchester romped away from third place.
There are huge question marks over Tottenham's appointment of Andre Villas-Boas, who will do well to keep his Chelsea nightmare out of the media's minds, so I'm tipping Brendan Rodgers' rejuvenated Reds troops to grab fifth spot by once again making Anfield the feared fortress of previous seasons.
Premier League bottom three: Norwich, Swansea, Wigan.
I've a horrible feeling the dreaded second-season syndrome will kick in at Carrow Road and the Liberty Stadium, where the departures of Paul Lambert and Brendan Rodgers for pastures new will prove costly.
The Canaries and Swans might well get off to a decent start under Chris Hughton and Michael Laudrup, but I think they'll get dragged towards the dropzone as the season pans out, and ultimately fall through the trapdoor.
Roberto Martinez's Latics staged another Great Escape at the DW Stadium last season, but I think promoted trio Reading, Southampton and West Ham will all keep their place in England's top tier, meaning Latics fans should try to enjoy this campaign before heading into the Championship - in bottom spot.
Leading Prem scorer: Sergio Aguero - Manchester City. The diminutive Argentine exploded onto the Premier League stage, having the final say in last season's title race with a stunning strike to sink QPR.
He'll get plenty of top-flight games under his belt again - and I'm backing him to better his 23-goal league haul to take top spot in the scoring charts.
First Prem manager to be sacked: Michael Laudrup - Swansea City.
This is a tough category to call as I think most clubs will stand behind their managers this season. I wanted to say Roberto Martinez's time at Wigan might come to an end - but Dave Whelan has gone on record to say he'd never sack the Spaniard, even supporting him if they do get relegated.
I'm going for Laudrup as I have a feeling the great expectations following last season's heroics could eventually overwhelm his Swans, who punched way above their weight but did struggle on their travels, losing 11 of 19 games.
Biggest Prem flop: Eden Hazard - Chelsea. Roberto Di Matteo has already attempted to quell the great expectations on the young Belgian, saying he is prepared to be patient as he settles into English life.
The race for his signature was hotly contested, but I'm not so sure Chelsea's style of play will suit the classy playmaker - and with a host of attacking midfielders at Di Matteo's disposal, he could be a big disappointment.
FA Cup winners: Manchester City. City got a taste of Wembley glory in May 2011 - and I think they'll lift the cup once again.
Capital One Cup winners: West Brom. Albion assistant Kevin Keen says the Baggies want some silverware this season having achieved back-to-back mid-table finishes in the league. They'll prioritise this competition.
Champions League winners: Real Madrid. Jose Mourinho will have been watching enviously as Roberto Di Matteo finally ended Roman Abramovich's long wait for European glory - and will have this trophy high on his wanted list.
Europa League winners: Inter Milan.
Championship top six: Wolves, Blackburn, Bolton, Birmingham, Leicester, Leeds.
Rovers have recruited well and will be up there all season, but Wolves have a rock-solid squad and plenty of second-tier experience to call upon.
Leading Championship scorer: Jordan Rhodes - Huddersfield Town. If the Terriers hang onto him this summer, he'll continue his rich vein of goal-scoring form despite stepping up a level.
League One champions: Sheffield United. The Blades were so close to making the automatic cut last season - but will get top spot this time around.
League Two champions: Southend. Close but no cigar for the Shrimpers last season, they'll get across the finishing line as champions.
SPL top three: Celtic, Dundee United, Motherwell. Will be a strange old season north of the border without Old Firm tussles, and the Bhoys could break the 100-point barrier.
SPL top-scorer: Gary Hooper - Celtic. Should fill his boots for the Bhoys this season and win this category by a country mile.
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