In this Exclusive Interview Sport Intelligence anchor Joseph Odoekwu had a chat with the Technical Director of Ventspils FC Paul Ashworth on his expectations ahead of the forthcoming 2017/2018 season. Ashworth believes that based on the activities in the current transfer market, Manchester United will win the English Premier League, but thinks no English team will win the Champions League. Enjoy it.
What do you think the 2017/2018 English Premier League Season will look like going by what you are seeing in the transfer market?
It will be the same as always.
How exactly do you mean, you mean Chelsea will win the premier league again?
No they don’t always win the premier league. And if you mean who will win the English premier league, then I tell you that Manchester United will win the premier league next season and I also see Everton finishing top four next season.
Why do you think Manchester United will win the Premier League and Everton finish top four?
Because of Jose Mourinho he has got a pedigree. Everton on the other side have bought well and they are going to come out strong in the next season. In fact, Everton will soon buy Sigudson they are going to be a strong side.
Are you saying that Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City does not have a chance to win the premier league after spending more than £200m this season?
Manchester City will definitely finish top four alongside Chelsea. But City will more likely win a silverware and that will be a cup.
Ashworth feels Everton will finish top four next season
Do you mean the UEFA Champions League or FA Cup?
Manchester City will win either of FA Cup or League Cup, but not the UEFA Champions League. Moreover, no English side will win the champions league
Why do you think an English side will not win the UEFA Champions league?
English teams are currently not good enough to win the champions league for next season. Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich are better and they stand a better chance to win the champions league for 2017/2018 season.
How about the Europa Cup, Manchester United broke the Spanish dominance of the Cup last season, do you see an English side continuing from where they stopped?
Sure, I see Arsenal winning the Europa Cup, they have a better chance to win it.
You earlier picked Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Everton to finish top four without giving Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham a chance, how did you reach such conclusion?
Well I have to pick some clubs! And for me, Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea are better than Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal. I just think Everton will be a surprise and they will finish top four in the next season.
But you strongly believe that no English side will win the Champions League, despite the spending done by a club like Manchester City and with the presence of a manager like Pep Guardiola?
Yes I am 100% sure, no English side will win the Uefa Champions League next season. Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern have better players. If Manchester City had spent money buying players from any of these clubs, then it will be a different thing all together.
It is practically impossible for Manchester City to buy players from Barcelona, Bayern or Real Madrid
But Manchester City have bought six players so far, are you saying they are not buying the right players?
No I am not saying that, what I mean is that it is practically impossible for Manchester City to buy players from Barcelona, Bayern or Real Madrid. The trio currently have the best players in the world, and you cannot take it away from them.
Back to the premier league, you earlier said Manchester United will win the Premier league, don’t you think its too early to reach such conclusion?
Of course it is too early! But you asked me and I have to give you that answer based on what is on ground. But if you still ask me by April next season I will tell you, then I will be correct.
Okay, your club Ventspils are currently 6th on the Latvia table, winning just one match in their last five matches with three draws and one loss, what could be responsible for that?
Not winning enough matches is the reason
So what happened technically and where did your side get it wrong?
We didn’t win enough games. After winning the cup in May, we were too relaxed in June and I think that is where we got it wrong.
Okay thank you very much.
You are welcome