The contrasting fortunes of both Liverpool and Manchester United this year got us wondering about which clubs had seen the biggest changes in fortune from one season to the next. We’ve looked at the final league tables for every Premier League season since the division was reduced to 20 clubs in 1994 to find the biggest changes in both position and points total from one campaign to the next.
Biggest position rises
Southampton were the biggest risers this season, improving 6 places from last season’s 14th to finish in 8th under Mauricio Pocchetino: an echo of their more modest jump in the 2000/01 season. However they’re some way off the biggest leap: Everton’s 13-place rise from 17th to 4th in David Moyes third full season at the helm.
Biggest points increases
Everton’s 22-point improvement that season may have been impressive, but rivals Liverpool actually surpassed it this season by finishing 23 points better off than in 2012/13. However they fell short of their own record: an improvement of 24 points in 2005/06 which only saw them rise from 5th to 3rd, a point behind Manchester United as Chelsea romped to the title.
Biggest position drops
Deposed champions United themselves have had a poor season, but West Brom’s drop has been larger: they’ve fallen one place further, from 8th to 17th. This however has nothing on the sudden downward lurches experienced earlier in the Premier League’s history, with both Ipswich and Blackburn finishing a campaign 13 places lower than the previous one and being relegated as a result.
Biggest points decreases
Of those two falls, Ipswich’s was the most dramatic: the impressive 66 points they racked up after promotion in 2000/01 was followed by a dismal return of just 36 – a full 30 points fewer. Manchester United came dangerously close to breaking that record this season though, shedding 25 points from their title-winning total of 89 to finish with just 64 this time around
For each pair of consecutive seasons we’ve looked at the final positions and points totals for each of the 17 clubs who took part in both, i.e. excluding the 3 teams who were relegated or promoted (on the basis that these would be messy to compare). When compiling the data we found a few “ties”, where two or more clubs had the joint-largest swing in points or position between the same seasons. For positive swings, we’ve settled these by picking the club which finished in the highest position or with the highest total, reasoning that this was more impressive, and likewise for negative swings we picked the side that finished in the lowest position or with the lowest total.