After nine games of the season we get a chance to rank the teams in the league from best to worst. This may not always match the league table, some teams have had tough runs but have played better than their results. Others may have played weak teams and barely won. Others may be a huge disappointment on the pitch regardless of changes.

  1. Manchester City (currently third, 20 points)

Poor against Southampton but dominated Chelsea and should have been out of sight by half time against Liverpool. Still playing without a recognised striker but still scoring more goals than most. Unbeaten away against the two closest rivals so far.

  1. Liverpool (currently second, 21 points)

Quietly just going about their business and beating the teams they are supposed to. The Brentford result was very unlike Liverpool. Klopp has again showed his first eleven are capable of destroying anyone.

  1. Chelsea (currently first, 22 points)

Seem to have finally put all the pieces together and their result at Anfield looked like title winners in the making, especially grinding a result with ten men. Other teams should worry that players like Havertz have barely started this season but are they flat track bullies.

  1. Brighton (currently fifth, 15 points)

Graham Potter has built a team that is finally taking its chances. Looked like the wheels would come off with their performance at Palace, but then they nicked a late point. Look more solid defensively than last season until they played Man City. A team with a plan.

  1. West Ham (currently fourth, 17 points)

Antonio makes a huge difference to them but playing in Europe is stretching their squad bounced back from a missed penalty against Man United which now looks like a real miss, could have left them looking over their shoulder.

  1. Everton (currently eighth, 14 points)

Rafa picked up Andros Townsend for nothing and Demarai Gray for less than two million. Rondon as a back up striker two years after he could have been at NUFC as well. Apart from a hiding at Villa they’ve looked improved and not many Everton fans calling for him to go right now.

  1. Manchester United (currently seventh, 14 points)

Signed Ronaldo, battered us and then it all seems to have hit a buffer. Big concerns about the tactics around the returning hero but also the McFred midfield looks lightweight.

  1. Tottenham (currently sixth, 15 points)

Just stay ahead of their rivals, despite being soundly beaten by them. Nuno made an excellent start and then Son’s injury and the international break seemed to work against them.

  1. Arsenal (currently eleventh, 10 points)

Already a season of frustration in North London. Three games without a win to start the season, a home game against Norwich came as a gift. Mixing breathtaking performances with calamity.

  1. Leicester (currently ninth, 14 points)

Missing too many defenders but the Jamie Vardy party continues for another season. I think they’ll end up about sixth but disappointing so far.

  1. Brentford (currently twelfth, 12 points)

Ivan Toney looks to have made a very good impression, maybe we could have given him a chance. Started well beating Arsenal but look completely unfazed by their opponents. Ajer looks very solid, might have been worth getting in.

  1. Aston Villa (currently thirteenth, 10 points)

Lost Jack Grealish but replaced him with three other players, beaten in a topsy turvy game at Watford but do seem to still have an extra level to go to. Bailey looked fabulous on debut but they need to cut out silly mistakes especially Tyrone Mings.

  1. Crystal Palace (currently fifteenth, 9 points)

Vieira had me thinking they would go down before a ball was kicked but they’ve actually looked OK. Should be fine, especially if Edouard settles and is half as good as he was at Celtic. Should have beaten us and Arsenal.

  1. Wolves (currently eleventh, 13 points)

Beating the poor teams (Saints, Watford, us) but losing to anyone who can put out a half decent side. Jimenez scoring was great to see and he may move on after this season if they end up missing out on Europe. The win vs Villa was a great watch.

  1. Leeds United (currently seventeenth, 7 points)

Bielsa continues with his basketball style and I am a fan. Bamford is struggling as people thought he might last year, I expect Dan James might have a very good second half of the season. Need to be more clinical.

  1. Southampton (currently sixteenth, 8 points)Still amazed they didn’t beat us. Armstrong isn’t Ings and I don’t think is as good as Toney. Might struggle second half of season, but haven’t been beat 9-0 yet.
  1. Watford (currently fourteenth, 10 points)

Last two games before Everton have shown that they aren’t a settled side. Sacked their manager after two poor games, Ranieri may not stay long unless performances like Saturday are every week.

  1. Burnley (currently eighteenth, 4 points)

Rather like last season Dyche’s boys have started slowly. Unlike last season it hasn’t appeared yet to be a matter of when they would win, now it is if. Not beating Norwich at home which was a freebie looks poor.

  1. Norwich City (currently twentieth, 2 points)

They’ve only scored two goals but have already played all of the top three in the rankings. Likely to get to twelvepoints but think that will be it. Doomed.

  1. Newcastle United (currently nineteenth, 4 points)

I know this might seem harsh to some, but we haven’t played anyone and we haven’t won. Comparing us to a newly promoted team who were written off before the season started is a new low. We don’t score enough and can’t keep them out. Relegation looms large.

STEPHEN ORD – @smord84