Premier League: Man City and Man United to lead Euro resurgence

Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola have won four Champions Leagues and a UEFA Cup between them
Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola have won four Champions Leagues and a UEFA Cup between them

Michael Lintorn flags up a trend which suggests that a Premier League club will go the distance in Europe in 2016/17...


"The Premier League has never endured a stretch of more than three terms without securing one of the Champions League or UEFA Cup/Europa League at any point this century."

One of the many You Choose, We Lose specials requested by Betfair customers ahead of the new Premier League season was for odds on one of the sides to win a European trophy in 2016/17, with it being priced up as a 2/1 possibility.

You might judge that to be an optimistic forecast given the absence from continental competition of heavyweight duo Chelsea and Liverpool and how poorly England's entrants performed collectively in the Champions League over the past two years, with one quarter-final reached from a possible eight. Add in a sudden reliance on untested Leicester and Tottenham and the outlook looks even grimmer.

However, don't forget that the Premier League came within 45 minutes of reclaiming the Europa League two months ago, a prize that had been exclusive property of La Liga in seven of the past 11 campaigns, including each of the most recent three, and supplies the 6/1 favourites for the latest edition in Manchester United.

Sevilla have seized that silverware in three successive seasons, but there are at least two reasons to believe that it will soon be under new ownership, one being that they will once again start out in the Champions League, while they lost the mastermind of their triple triumph, Unai Emery, to Paris St-Germain.

There is also a more mathematical trend indicating that Premier League glory in Europe is overdue, and that is how the division has never endured a stretch of more than three terms without securing one of the Champions League or UEFA Cup/Europa League at any point this century.

It took nine years to get back on top in either competition after returning from a UEFA ban in 1990, with Man United assuming responsibility with victory in the 1998/99 Champions League, and success has flowed fairly freely ever since, with Liverpool lifting the UEFA Cup two years later against Alaves.

There were then three trophyless seasons before the Reds won the Champions League in 2004/05, a feat that Man United followed three years later, after which there were three more lean campaigns before Chelsea picked up the baton with the top honour in 2011/12 and the secondary in 2012/13.

Since then, three more fruitless challenges have been conducted across the two fronts, yet history teaches us that the count is always stopped before four. The question is whether it will be Leicester, Arsenal, Tottenham, Man City, Man United, Southampton or West Ham who profit from the pattern.

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