A mathematical model will define the Premier League ranks.
Before the COVID-19 world crisis, the Premier League was in its final stretch. At the top of the table, the leader Liverpool needed his immediate pursuer Manchester City to lose two games to take the champions trophy to Anfield. In the rest of the table, things were still to be defined, especially about the Champions League positions. Since between the teams in places 3 to 7 of the table, the difference in points was tiny, and the teams played everything on each date to maintain his position or make leapfrog to a better one.
The outbreak of COVID-19 around the world has caused all sports activities to stop for at least April 30. The Premier League is no exception. The English football association has been working on different ideas to return to regular activity as soon as possible. One of these proposals was to carry out the games that are pending without an audience in the stadium. In this way, the health of the fans and the general public don’t run any risk. However, this proposal has many detractors, especially team managers who do not want to play without an audience since this affects the income of the teams by not receiving the box office earnings.
Faced with an uncertain future scenario, where it is not known for sure if, after April 30, sports activity can be resumed, another option on the table is to use a mathematical model to predict the results of the pending matches and determine the final ranking of the premier league.
The mathematical model is the same one used by FIFA to carry out the rankings of the men’s and women’s national teams. This model is based on the Elo calculation method and takes into account the difficulty of the pending games to add or subtract points to each team. The prediction is based on the average points that the team would have achieved in the 9 or 10 games pending. Also, the model factors the home advantage and the strength of the rivals.
Many believe that using this mathematical model is the fairest and safest way to determine the final positions of the 2019-2020 season of the Premier League. If the English football association decides on this option that would mean that we end the season, and if everything goes well, and the virus outbreak is contained, sports activity would resume until August for the start of the 2020-2021 season.
Some British newspapers have already used the model to determine what the final table could look like. Below are the most relevant results:
The calculation throws Liverpool as the undisputed champion with 105.9 points, the Reds will not only be able to add a Premier League title to Anfield showcases after 30 years, but they would also break the record for the most points achieved in one season.
In position 5, Manchester United would be placed with 60.4 points and Wolverhampton in position 6 with 57.4 points, which would give them access to play the Europa League.
At the bottom of the table would be Bournemouth with 34.3, Aston Villa with 32.6, and Norwich with 28.3 points. These three teams would descend from category.
In the coming weeks, we will know the decision of the English football association on how to end the Premier League. Meanwhile, we can only hope and have faith that the ball will roll again in the English fields and that it will not be necessary to a mathematical model to determine the result of the games.