The CIES Football Observatory has released its big-five predictions for the 2013-14 season, suggesting statistically likely winners of Europe's top leagues.
The project is an independent study centre located in Neuchatel, Switzerland, and was created as a joint venture between FIFA and the University of Neuchatel in 2006.
Each and every year they analyse data to try and accurately predict who will win the Premier League, Bundesliga, Ligue 1, La Liga and Serie A, and this year in particular has drawn up some interesting results.
The method, according to CIES, is rather simple:
Our predictions are based on the analysis of player profile data from the perspective of "experience" (number of matches played and results achieved), "prolificacy" (number of goals scored and level of the competition) and "stability" (number of seasons with the employer club and years remaining on contract).
Using these indicators, we have classified teams by taking into account the 11 players with the highest scores (potential "starting 11"), as well as squad members ranked between the 12th and 22nd positions ("substitutes").
The final ranking has been estimated on the basis of the average position in the two tables. In case of equality, we ranked teams according to their overall score.
If CIES' formula is correct, it's bad news for Cardiff City, Hull City and Fulham fans this year as they're slated in for relegation from the Premier League. Torino, Werder Bremen and Rayo Vallecano are also expected to drop.
Manchester United have been selected to win the English title with Chelsea, Manchester City and Arsenal trailing in their wake. Tottenham claim fifth, while Liverpool finish above their blue rivals Everton in sixth.
Real Madrid claim La Liga's title back from Barcelona, Atletico Madrid finish third and Athletic Bilbao an impressive fifth behind Basque rivals Real Sociedad.
Paris Saint-Germain are set for consecutive Ligue 1 titles, staving off Marseille and Monaco in the chase, and Borussia Dortmund pip Bayern Munich to the Bundesliga crown.
Finally, Juventus take a third consecutive Serie A title with Milan second, and Napoli slipping to third under Rafa Benitez.
You can view the full set of predictions, including complete tables for all five leagues and key players for each side, here.
What do you make of CIES' method and analysis? Do you believe they've thrown up accurate predictions?
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