What is our standing as a club today?

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With the transfer window at an end and coming to terms that Jack Wilshire chose to go on a year long loan from Arsenal to Bournemouth I began to wonder just what our standing is in the Premier League.

What do I mean? Who would a player chose to sign for if you strip away what he might be be paid and only take in to consideration prestige and standing in the minds of the average Joe.

There are a couple of different ways of looking at this. For example, Lionel Messi would most likely choose Manchester United over any other club in England whereas a highly rated player might shy away from a top 4 team because of a lack of first team opportunities.

So, from a superstar point of view and being as unbiased as I can here is where I see the Premier League clubs ranked in order of prestige. This is not based on income, number of fans, stadium or anything like that. It’s only based on what image the name of the club congers up based on honours won and historical European consciousness.

Here is the top 8:

Manchester Utd
Liverpool
Arsenal
Chelsea
Manchester City
Tottenham
Leicester
Everton

I don’t think there will be too many arguments with the top 8. Historically Manchester United and Liverpool have a much bigger presence in the minds of our European neighbours while the ‘new money’ of Chelsea and Manchester City may have helped them appeal to a neutral minded footballer, there still isn’t the history there.

Tottenham and Everton make it based on their exploits in Europe back in the eighties and Leicester make it there because they have Champions League football, for this year. Arsenal make up the other team in the top 8 because of consistency rather than actually achieving anything for people to remember.

So, with my theory in mind, if a Lionel Messi wanted to come to England and wave his wages I would guess he would choose one of the top 8, had Leicester not won the Premier League last season then it would only have been a top 7 because nobody in the other 12 teams, in my opinion, comes close to being in the same company as the other teams.

So, what order for the other 12 teams and why does it matter? It matters because this is the order that I think an up and coming player would choose. In this situation he’d want to play first team football and not be endlessly loaned out so if he could pick a team I think it would be in this order.

Southampton West Ham

And it is at this point that I have a problem. This is because I genuinely think the next seven teams are pretty equal because we all have a major risk of having a relegation fight every season.

In some case we have to rely on there being 3 worse teams than us. However the next seven are:

Stoke
West Brom
Swansea
Crystal Palace
Watford
Sunderland
Bournemouth

It’s with a heavy heart that I put the teams in that order because in my head I think Palace are a bigger club than Stoke or West Brom but because they have been in the Premier League longer than we have my heart says this counts more for other people. Because Palace fans keep saying so!

With that in mind the final 3 has to be the newly promoted clubs who are:

Hull
Middlesbrough
Burnley

So, do you agree with me that Palace are the 14th most prestigious club in the Premier League? There is certainly a case for saying we should be 11th but given that this is only our 4th year in the Premier League and taking into account what Swansea, Stoke and West Brom have done during the last 6 years it would be difficult.

Have your say in the comments below.

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