A lot of things can happen between now and January 1st, 2010... but one thing is for sure, it's January 2009 and it's time to make predictions that will likely not come true. Here's how I see the coming year, who will win what and which teams will fade down the stretch...
English Premier League: Liverpool will win... as of the turn of the clock from 2008 to 2009, Liverpool were leading the Premier League, just a head of Chelsea and Man Utd (who have 2 games less played) and I think that they might be able to actually hang on this time around. Liverpool's defense and goalkeeping is solid, they have a good midfield, with Gerrard as the Captain, he will lead the men in red to glory and with Torres set to return and Keane finding his form, it will be tough for the other teams to catch them. This will finally be, Liverpool's year. In the relegation battle, it's going to be a very interesting with 10 teams within 8 points of the last place team... so here it goes. West Brom have said they won't buy any players in January and I believe have come to the conclusion that they are going back down... Stoke City is another team in the relegation zone at posting and don't have the horses to keep them above it. The 3rd team that will go down is... Middlesbrough. They are having trouble putting together any kind of winning streak and there is a ton of interest in Stewart Downing, Middlebrough's best player. If Downing departs, it's relegation time for The Boro.
Germany Bundesliga: Hoffenheim has thrilled and surprised everyone since they entered the Bundesliga this season, and to much surprise, they are the winter champions... however, that is the only title they will have in the Bundesliga this year. Bayern started the year off slowly, but have finally caught fire and caught Hoffenheim to tie them for first place... Bayern have the guns and the horses to keep them there... Hoffenheim may have won the winter title on goal differential, but Bayern will win the league on points.
Italian Serie A: Inter Milan lead all Italian clubs with the "Special One" in charge and at posting, are 6 points up on Juventus...9 points up on city rivals, AC Milan. Inter have been playing well all season with only 1 loss. I don't see a letdown in their play in the second half of the season and Inter will be crowned the Campioni of Italy.
Spanish Primera: Okay, let's keep this short and sweet... Barcelona will win. No one else has a chance. 'nuff said.
Champions League: Bayern Munich might have been given the easiest route to the final with a set of games vs Sporting, but I'm not sure they have what it takes to keep the wagons rolling. The other match-ups make it a very difficult decision, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Liverpool will make it a double winning England and winning Champions League. It's going to be tough, but I think Liverpool can pull it off and have the desire to prive everyone wrong this season.
Uefa Cup: It will be more Russian glory this season... CSKA Moscow.
It will be an interesting few months until those titles are won or lost... but it will all be very entertaining. What does Mike Martignago think? Who are his picks? Does he agree at all with Tyler? Find out this Sunday night on the TEAM 1040 at 10pm PT or listen online on Sunday night at www.team1040.ca