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And the winners are?

Who will win the major honours in 2012? Footballwriters.co.uk asked those in the know.

IAN ABRAHAMS (aka The Moose, talkSPORT)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?

Man Utd

Who will be relegated?
Blackburn, Wigan and Swansea

Who will win the Champions League?
Real Madrid

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Harry Redknapp

Young player to watch out for?
Nathan Redmond (Birmingham City)

Young manager to make an impact?
Young? Impact? Chris Powell

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Demba Ba

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
No

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
Not to upset Chris Davies every time he comes to talkSPORT Towers – maybe just every other.

DAN BLAZER (studying journalism at Anglia Ruskin University)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?
I honestly thought this season would be too early for City but every week they prove me wrong and look more and more like title contenders. The Barclays Premier League trophy will definitely be in Manchester come May, but it will have to be a braver man than me to say whether it will be at Old Trafford or the Etihad.

Who will be relegated?
I hope QPR go down (Neil Warnock must have gone to the same PR school as Harry Redknapp, those two just love having an opinion…on everything) and I reckon Wigan and Bolton will be joining them

Who will win the Champions League?
Real Madrid. Mourinho knows how to beat Barcelona and I just hope for the sake of football that the Catalan giants don’t dominate again.

Who will win Euro 2012?
My betting slip is telling me Italy at 14/1.

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Arsene Wenger. The Frenchman is suited to international football and he would definitely help bring through our youth like the Spanish and Germans have.

Young player to watch out for?
Francis Coquelin – I’ve been impressed by the young Gunner, passionate, strong and does the simple stuff well. Hope he gets his chance at the Emirates or maybe a loan move in January will benefit him.

Young manager to make an impact?
AVB – Give the guy time, he knows what he is doing. If Chelsea play their cards right they could have a manager who outstays Fergie.

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Gareth Bale, I feel that the Spurs man is showing the form that he should have been showing last season when he received ample amounts of undeserved praise. Funny thing is, I know he won’t even be considered this year, strange game football.

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
Yes definitely, I mean we’ve got to be good at one sport, surely…

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To prove that AVB and Juan Mata are the same person (has no one else noticed the similarities?)

DANNY FULLBROOK (Daily Star)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?

I think it will be Manchester City who will walk off with the title. By the end of the season the quality that they have in their front six will be enough to do the job. They need to show bottle now to bounce back from their recent slip-ups. Manchester United’s form will dip soon.

Who will be relegated?
Two of the relegated teams are straight forward. I see Bolton and Blackburn definitely going down especially if both teams hold on to their managers. After that it will be a lot tighter but I think Wigan will get out of it while Swansea’s away form could make them pay the ultimate price and relegation though they came good at Villa Park.

Who will win the Champions League?
For me it has always been Real Madrid. There was only so long that Jose Mourinho was going to fail at Madrid, but not any longer. Bayern Munich and Barcelona will be a real challenge and Arsenal and Chelsea will have to up their game, but Madrid are the winners

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany have to be a great bet for Euro 2012 if you believe that Spain have seen out their cycle. That is the tough call. With the further development of young players Germany will be a lot of peoples’ favourites for the final and to win

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
It has to be Harry Redknapp because he has all the credentials to manage the national team. He has the experience, tactical acumen but most important at this level the man management skills to succeed which I think are vital to the job.

Young player to watch out for?
Kerim Frei at Fulham. He is an 18-year-old Switzerland international and a nippy winger. Frank Lampard said he was impressed with him when they played in the Carling Cup against each other

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Robin Van Persie. His goalscoring exploits have been second to none but it all depends if he keeps going along the same route

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
No, it will all end in a mess with Stuart Pearce in charge

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To be fit and healthy for Euro 2012

DEAN JONES (The People)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?
I backed Manchester United in our pre-season predictions and I’m sticking by them. Even though they’ve had a horrible spell of injuries and lost 3-2 to Blackburn, I think they have the bottle to top their neighbours and prove splashing money doesn’t guarantee titles. It’s exciting to see the blue half of Manchester put up a challenge but I expect them to hit a blip in the second half of the season and United will kick on from February to clinch the title with a few games to spare.

Who will be relegated?
Bolton and Blackburn were both promoted in 2001 and have enjoyed a great stay, but I think their time is up. They lack depth and defensively both are going to continue to leak too many goals at home. The other side I fear for is Wolves. Goals are not easy to come by and the crowd are obviously a bit edgy, which can impact heavily on players when the pressure is on. I think they’ll finish below Wigan which has to be a worry.

Who will win the Champions League?
I wanted to believe Real Madrid could realistically challenge Barcelona this season for the trophy but it’s hard to see that happening. Cesc Fabregas must be loving life since he moved back home and he’ll be happier than ever when he has his hands on Europe’s top trophy in May. His dream will be achieved in his first season.

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany. This side have everything and are even better than they were in the World Cup two years ago – when they battered our clueless England. In qualifying the Germans showed an attacking brand of football that few nations are going to match. They are probably the only side heading to the Championship not afraid of Spain.

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Roy Hodgson. I’ve had a lot of stick for this opinion but I have said it for the past two years and I’m not budging. Forget the Liverpool debacle which was unfair because King Kenny was breathing down his neck. Roy would know each of England’s opponents inside out and would find a way of beating them. I don’t think the football would be particularly attractive but at least we might challenge for a trophy. My only concern is how he would handle the Press attention.

Young player to watch out for?
Kerim Frei at Fulham. He is a prospect the club have been excited to unleash on the top-flight and has already shown he can skin world class full-backs. He will get plenty more games in the coming year as the long-term successor to Damien Duff and Simon Davies on Fulham’s flanks. It won’t be too long before the sharks are circling Craven Cottage to snap up another young star.

Young manager to make an impact?
The turnaround at Crystal Palace has been incredible over the past year and Dougie Freedman could really make a name for himself as a manager in 2012. He has the chance to make it to the Carling Cup final, and is also looking good to lead the Eagles to the play-offs. Palace are playing great football and if they can make two Wembley appearances this season their manager will quickly become one of the most highly regarded young bosses in the game.

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
It would have to be Robin van Persie at this stage. He seems to have left his injury problems in the past and Arsenal’s GPS system has helped him control when he should and should not be playing. As a result we are seeing him at his best every time he steps foot on the pitch. He’s been superb and without him Arsenal’s season would already be over.

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
Is this a joke question? Of course we won’t. I would like to see plenty of Championship players included in the squad because they will have more motivation to do well. If GB is made up of a few names who failed to make England’s squad to Euro 2012, along with some of Stuart Pearce’s Under-21s and a couple of players from the other countries, we’ll bomb.

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To watch more football from outside the Barclays Premier League. It’s difficult for me to report on stories or games from outside the top-flight too often because there is so much demand for the most high profile sides, but I’ve been to a couple of lower league and non-league matches recently and had forgotten how much more enjoyable it is to see lads playing with pure passion.

MATT LAWTON (Daily Mail)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?

Manchester City, simply because they have a squad significantly stronger than Manchester United’s and, indeed, anyone else in the Barclays Premier League. United have some key weaknesses in certain areas and it will prove their undoing until Sir Alex Ferguson can recruit new players.

Who will be relegated?
Wigan, Blackburn and Bolton. They are in the bottom three for a reason and I don’t see any of them climbing clear when QPR will certainly be able to spend in this transfer window.

Who will win the Champions League?
Real Madrid. It seems ridiculous to bet against Barcelona but they can’t win everything every year. At least I don’t think so anyway. Between Mourinho and Ronaldo, Madrid might just have enough this season.

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany. Much like the previous question, it seems crazy to bet against Spain. But I just have a feeling an exciting German side that impressed at the last World Cup will come good this summer, two years later.

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Harry Redknapp. I’d certainly like to see an English manager succeed Capello, and right now Harry is the outstanding candidate. I think the players would respond to him and it would be exciting to go to the next World Cup in Brazil with him in charge.

Young player to watch out for?
It doesn’t sound terribly imaginative but I’m excited by the prospect of seeing Jack Wilshere at Euro 2012. With him in the same midfield as Steven Gerrard and Scott Parker I can see a genuinely decent England side emerging.

Young manager to make an impact?
Paul Lambert seems to be fast proving himself at the highest level and I suspect it won’t be long before other clubs are trying to entice him away from Norwich.

Early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Right now it has to be Robin Van Persie. He’s having a marvellous season and I just hope he stays clear of injury. He’s had enough bad luck already.

Will Team GB win an Olympic gold?
I doubt it and I really don’t care. I love the Olympics and I can’t wait to cover it this summer, but football, like tennis and golf, has no place at the Olympics. The Olympics should represent the pinnacle for the athletes involved. This will be an Under-23 tournament involving none of those, in GB’s case, at Euro 2012.
Nonsense.

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To become an expert in swimming. That, after all, is what I’ll be covering at the Olympics and I’m seriously excited. It’s going to be a great year of sport.

ALISTAIR LOWER (Charlton Athletic fan, aged 11)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?
Man City

Who will be relegated?
Blackburn, Wigan, Bolton

Who will win the Champions League?
Barcelona

Who will win Euro 2012?
Spain

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Harry Redknapp, Spurs

Young player to watch out for?
Tom Cleverly, Man Utd

Young manager to make an impact in 2012?
Chris Powell, Charlton

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Vincent Kompany, Man City

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
No

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To hope Charlton get promoted and support them in Championship

SAM WALLACE (Independent)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?
Manchester United

Who will be relegated?
Blackburn, Wigan, Bolton

Who will win the Champions League?
Real Madrid

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Harry Redknapp

Young player to watch out for?
Luke Shaw (Southampton)

Young manager to make an impact?
Michael Appleton (Portsmouth)

Your early favourite for the Footballer of the Year?
Robin Van Persie

Will Team GB win an Olympic Gold?
No

What is your New Year’s Resolution?
To listen to the safety briefing before taking any domestic flights in Ukraine.

JIM WHITE (Daily Telegraph)
Who will win the Barclays Premier League?

Manchester United. In the end, experience counts. And City have not yet had a crisis. But they will.

Who will be relegated?
A Lancashire meltdown: Wigan, Blackburn, Bolton

Who will win the Champions League?
Real Madrid. Mourinho will finally get his revenge on Barcelona in an el clasico final.

Who will win Euro 2012?
Germany. A clutch of excellent young players combined with tournament winning experience. Plus Spanish players will all be exhausted from all that diving in the Champions League final.

If you had the choice who would succeed Fabio Capello?
Tax issues not withstanding, Harry Redknapp. If HMRC intervene then Roy Hodgson.

Young player to watch out for?
Paul Pogba. One thing United need is a central midfielder. Pogba could be the answer, given a run.

Young manager to make an impact?
Marcus Law, manager of Tamworth. He’s 36 and going places. Has already accomplished a run of 67 games unbeaten in non-league football.

Early favourite for Footballer of the Year?
David Silva.

Will Team GB win an Olympic gold?
No.

Your New Year’s resolution?
Try to write a decent match report.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Pingback: Germany much | Alldogthings

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