Premier League Half-Term Report: Every club rated and graded

first_img 21 We’ve reached the halfway stage of the Premier League season, so who’s achieving the top grades so far, and who must do better in the second half of the campaign?talkSPORT has rated and graded the top-flight’s 20 clubs to see who should be on the honours board, and who is heading for detention. Or worse, expulsion!Click the arrow above on the right to check out the register… WEST BROMWICH ALBION: Have recovered from a slow start to the term and look well set to at least match last term’s achievements, if not better them. The governors rejected calls to replace their wily old head teacher, and that faith is now being repaid as he continues to prove he can manage limited resources as well as anyone. – Head Boy: Gareth McAuley is the oldest member of the class, but his work is of a consistently high standard and he’s not missed a day sick so far. Team Grade: C+ SWANSEA CITY: The highest-ranked Welsh academy in the UK, but they are in danger of having their funding cut following a disastrous half-term which now sees them searching for their third headmaster in almost as many months. They seem to be getting their sums wrong at every turn, and they need to figure out the answer to the equation in double quick time. – Head Boy: Gylfi Sigurdsson is leading the way in pretty much every subject. Team Grade: E MIDDLESBROUGH: Back in the top form following a lengthy absence in the second set, but they have not found the step up in class an easy one to make. Creative subjects continue to be their real Achilles heel, but if they can get their home economics right in the second half of the term they should maintain their current status. – Head Boy: Alvaro Negredo is finding the right answers to be keep them on the path to success. Team Grade: C- 21 21 SOUTHAMPTON: Coping well with the sudden departure of last year’s headmaster during the summer holidays, and they continue to excel when it comes to bringing youngsters through into the senior academy. Their big problem remains the unfortunate occurrence of their top students moving out of the area and starting at new schools. – Head Boy: Virgil van Dijk has shown strong leadership qualities, but rumours persist he will be tempted by the offer of a scholarship at an established Ivy League outfit. Team Grade: B 21 WEST HAM UNITED: Ended last term among the leading institutes in the country and there was genuine hope that, with a move to sparkling new premises and an influx of new students, that upward mobility would continue. Everyone has struggled to settle in their new home, however, with the new boys under-performing and some of last year’s star pupils failing to make the grade this term. Must do better. – Head Boy: Michail Antonio has proved to be a versatile performer in a number of different subjects. Team Grade: D TOTTENHAM: Fell just short last term, and so far look to be struggling to cope with the weight of expectation on a talented, but relatively young group of scholars. The bigger boys just seem a little better equipped when it comes to the most testing of exam conditions when the pressure reaches its peak. – Head Boy: Harry Kane has got his angles right again in recent weeks after a tricky start to the term. Team Grade: B- 21 21 21 21 MANCHESTER CITY: Were expected to be leading the exam table at this stage, but languages appear to be letting them down as their new Spanish headmaster struggles to get his message across to the most cosmopolitan of classrooms. In hindsight, he might wish class monitor Joe Hart was still around rather than on a foreign exchange trip. There has been plenty of funding in recent years, and they will need to get their sums right in the second half of the term. – Head Boy: Baby-faced Kevin De Bruyne is showing maturity beyond his years. Team Grade: B- LIVERPOOL: Now in his first full term in charge, their lovable German headmaster has really turned around a failing institution that was struggling to live up to past successes. A lack of European study sessions has helped them focus on their domestic sciences, and they have found the right ingredients despite being without senior prefect Philippe Coutinho at crucial stages. – Head Boy: Adam Lallana’s return from a bout of sick leave has come at just the right time. Team Grade: A HULL CITY: There was much optimism when they sealed their instant return to top form status at the end of last term, but that quickly evaporated when the head teacher unexpectedly resigned during the summer holidays. Eventually, the deputy head was promoted to the top job but that meant they were always behind in their homework and struggling to deal with the syllabus. A big improvement is needed. – Head Boy: Senior prefect Curtis Davies is doing his best to inspire the troops around him. Team Grade: E STOKE CITY: Now established among the country’s elite institutions, but they have found it tough to live up to recent successes. They have refined their curriculum in recent times and taken a more cultured and continental approach but, if results don’t improve soon, it’s possible they might be better served seeking to reclaim their previous status as playground bullies. – Head Boy: Joe Allen has shot to the top of the class after moving schools in the summer. Team Grade: C 21 21 21 21 SUNDERLAND: They have narrowly scraped a pass mark in the last few terms, and there has been precious little evidence they have learned their lessons in the first half of this term. A change of head teacher has had little impact and it looks as though they will have to revise like crazy once again towards the end of term if they are to get their grades. – Head Boy: First year Jordan Pickford has been superb, but sadly he will now be off sick for a couple of months. Team Grade: D- BURNLEY: Not one of the most stylish or fashionable institutes in the country, but they are known for instilling a good work ethic into their students and that continues to stand them in good stead as they look to maintain their place in the top form. The head teacher, who graduated from the school of hard knocks, has a steely determination about him and leads well by example. – Head Boy: Michael Keane is proving why he was rated as such an outstanding prospect in his junior school days. Team Grade: C+ EVERTON: Continue to live in the shadows of the city’s more famous academy, and that shows no signs of changing in the near future. They look a better organised outfit after replacing their Spanish head teacher with a more pragmatic Dutchman, but there continues to be concerns about their collective ability to succeed in the arts and creative departments. – Head Boy: Romelu Lukaku is leading from the front, but his classmates will be hoping he doesn’t have any time off sick. Team Grade: B We’ve reached the halfway stage, so what does each team’s report card look like right now? Click the arrow above to see how your team has been graded CHELSEA: Top of the class, and look set fair to graduate with the top honours. Their new Italian headmaster has got the class smiling again following the trials and tribulations under the previous leader, who was replaced by a Dutch substitute teacher just before last Christmas. But now everyone is speaking the same language and he’s got his maths right after switching to three at the back. If they continue to show the same levels of concentration and application, they should achieve their targets. – Head Boy: Diego Costa spent most of last season standing in the corner of the classroom in disgrace, but has been a model pupil this term. Team Grade: A+ 21 MANCHESTER UNITED: For so long the top school in the country, they have struggled badly following the retirement of their venerable old Scottish headmaster, with his tried and trusted methods. The new man they brought in during the summer has a point to prove after failing in his last job, and the signs are he is beginning to turn the class around. But top marks this term look unlikely. – Head Boy: Zlatan Ibrahimovic is showing the younger boys in the class exactly how it should be done. Team Grade: C 21 LEICESTER CITY: Stunned the world by achieving the highest marks last year, but they have found themselves in detention throughout much of this half-term. They have excelled in geography and foreign studies, but domestic science has been a disaster and a big, big improvement is needed in the new year or they will be in danger of dropping into the lower set. – Head Boy: Danny Drinkwater continues to be right at the top of the class. Team Grade: E BOURNEMOUTH: The smallest academy in the country, but they continue to punch above their weight and have delivered a solid set of results in the first half of the year. Their headmaster was linked with the top job in the country recently, and that’s a measure of how highly they are regarded. If they remain focussed, end of term success seems assured. – Head Boy: Expelled from his London academy, Nathan Ake has knuckled down in a new environment and has produced high quality work all term. Team Grade: B+ 21 21 ARSENAL: They have under-achieved in recent years, and appear in danger once more of failing to get the best out of an undoubtedly talented group of students. The school’s parent teacher association continues to be divided about the wisdom and decisions of their veteran French head teacher, with some feeling it’s time he retired and made way for a younger man with fresh ideas. – Head Boy: Alexis Sanchez continues to impress, but economics could be a tricky subject in the next few months. Team Grade: B CRYSTAL PALACE: Now with a new headmaster in charge, but he has plenty to prove after a short stint at the head of the national academy came to an end in ignominious fashion. They were expected to continue their improvement from last term when they attained a comfortable pass mark, but a lack of concentration and attention to detail has cost them dearly so far this term. – Head Boy: Wilfried Zaha has excelled so far, but there is trouble ahead with him set to go on holiday to Africa during term time. Team Grade: D 21 21 WATFORD: Also began the term with a new man in charge despite the relative success of last year, and he has continued the good work of his predecessor. They are an advocate of a foreign exchange policy when looking to bolster classroom numbers, and that has led to an upturn in end of term results in recent times. – Head Boy: Etienne Capoue is proving to be this term’s poster boy for their foreign exchange policy. Team Grade: C+ 21 21 21last_img


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