After 100 points and 98, perhaps Manchester City are only on course for 96. They start as favourites to win a third successive title, having normalised both winning and thrashing.
The Treble winners may have an eye on Europe and triumphing in the Uefa Champions League, but there will be a focus, too, on David Silva, in his final season in Manchester.
City could do with Benjamin Mendy being fitter for longer and Riyad Mahrez finding his Leicester form but, when Leroy Sane spent some of last season on the bench and Gabriel Jesus got 21 goals in a bit-part role, they are operating in a position of enviable strength.
Who finishes where in 2019-20?
20. Sheffield United. Chris Wilder, pictured, has achieved a great deal in getting the Blades up, but staying in the top flight could be a task too far. PA Photo
19. Brighton & Hove Albion. Graham Potter, pictured, faces a tough ask after taking over as manager from Chris Hughton. Getty
18. Newcastle United. A tough set of opening home fixtures could be difficult for Steve Bruce, pictured, and his side to recover from. Getty
17. Norwich City. They need to tighten up defensively but the goals of Teemu Pukki, pictured, can keep them up. Getty
16. Aston Villa. Jack Grealish, pictured, will have a key role to play in Villa's survival hopes. Getty
15. Burnley. Sean Dyche's, pictured, team to have a steadier time of things after last season's early struggles. Reuters
14. Bournemouth. Eddie Howe's side to maintain their attacking ethos though they will help Lloyd Kelly, pictured, can help shore things up at the other end. Getty
13. Crystal Palace. Once again will be dependent on the goals of Wilfried Zaha, pictured. Reuters
12. Watford. Concerns over a leaky defence but the quality of Gerard Deulofeu, pictured, should leave them in mid-table. AP Photo
11. Southampton. Stability should come the Saints way under manager Ralph Hasenhuttl, pictured. PA Photo
10. Wolverhampton Wanderers. Balancing Europa League with domestic games may prove tough. Will look to more fine form from captain Conor Coady, pictured. Getty
9. West Ham United. Should be another solid season with the hope Felipe Anderson, pictured, can kick on. Getty
8. Everton. Bringing in Moise Kean, pictured, is a coup and should help Marco Silva's side continue to progress. Getty
7. Leicester City. Signing Youri Tielemans, pictured, permanently will boost Leicester's hopes of a real push at the top six. Reuters
6. Arsenal. Unai Emery will hope the record signing of Nicolas Pepe and the goals of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, pictured, can push them closer to the top four. EPA
5. Chelsea. New manager Frank Lampard needs big things from Christian Pulisic, pictured, if they are to excel. Reuters
4. Manchester United. Signings such as Aaron Wan-Bissaka, pictured, will tighten things up and should get United back in top four. Getty
3. Tottenham Hotspur. Third place again for Spurs, though more is needed from Dele Alli, pictured. Getty
2. Liverpool. Mohamed Salah, pictured, will be pivotal again but Jurgen Klopp's men to finish behind City again. AFP
1. Manchester City. Hard to see beyond another title success for Pep Guardiola's, pictured, side. Getty
Key player: John Stones
The Englishman’s last two seasons have followed similar patterns, with terrific first halves followed by bit-part roles thereafter. With Vincent Kompany gone and no centre-back signed, it is imperative Stones sustains his form. His partnership with Aymeric Laporte promised much in the early part of the last campaign.
Manchester City's treble winners ratings
Pep Guardiola: 10/10. The Catalan is surely the finest manager in club football. Has taken City to new heights, securing an unprecedented English treble of Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup in a single season. AFP
Claudio Bravo: 5/10. The Chilean has fallen way down the pecking order at City behind Ederson and Arijanet Muric. Made only one appearance this season in the curtain-raising Community Shield win over Chelsea. Reuters
Ederson: 8/10. Twenty clean sheets for the Brazilian who also registered an assist for Sergio Aguero in the 6-1 rout of Huddersfield in the second game of the season. Getty Images
Kyle Walker: 7/10. Few can match the flying right-back for pace or determination. Lacks the quality on the ball of his chief rivals in the national team Kieran Trippier and Trent Alexander-Arnold. Reuters
Danilo: 6/10. On the periphery for most of the season, making only 10 Premier League appearances. The Brazilian remains an able squad player who can fill in at full-back or defensive midfield if required. Getty Images
Vincent Kompany: 8/10. The Belgian proved with his thunderous strike against Leicester City in the run-in that he is still the man for the big occasion. A club legend who on Sunday announces he will leave the club after 11 seasons. Reuters
John Stones: 6/10. A stop-start season due to niggling injuries but the Englishman formed a formidable early-season partnership alongside Aymeric Laporte. Reuters
Aymeric Laporte: 9/10. Manchester City's best defender this season. Has hardly put a foot wrong since joining from Athletic Bilbao for £57 million in January 2018. The heir to Kompany's throne. EPA
Benjamin Mendy: 5/10. The French left-back has suffered another season disrupted by injury. Off-field antics have not always impressed his manager but no doubt Mendy is a one-man flank down City's left when fit. Reuters
Nicolas Otamendi: 5/10. The no-nonsense Argentine has slipped down the pecking order due to the form of Stones and Laporte. An able back-up though. Reuters
Ilkay Gundogan: 7/10. Has the short-passing game and on-field intelligence so admired by Guardiola in his central midfielders. Chipped in with some important performances and goals, including a peach for City's final of the campaign against Brighton. Reuters
Kevin de Bruyne: 6/10. The Belgian metronome has suffered an injury-hit campaign restricting him to just 19 appearances. It says something of City's achievement that they won the title largely without their best player. Reuters
Fabian Delph: 5/10. The Englishman found his appearances limited this season despite the long-term injuries to Benjamin Mendy and Kevin de Bruyne. Reuters
Bernardo Silva: 10/10. A personal view is that the Portuguese winger should have scooped all the individual player awards this season. Operates to devastating affect anywhere across the midfield and wide forward positions. Regularly tops the charts for most kilometres covered in a game and epitomises his manager's work ethic. Reuters
David Silva: 8/10. The Spanish maestro's influence on the team was overshadowed by namesake Bernardo but still continues to be a mainstay in one of the best attacking teams in Europe. AFP
Fernandinho: 8/10. The one player City struggle to replace. The Brazilian may have a contend for the best holding midfielder in the league in compatriot Fabinho but still offers outstanding protection to his defence. Reuters
Oleksandr Zinchenko: 7/10. The main beneficiary of Mendy's injury problems. The Ukraine lacks the quality of the Frenchman's passing and crossing but like his teammate looks to get forward at every opportunity. Was outstanding in the League Cup final shoot-out win over Chelsea after an early mistake. Reuters
Phil Foden: 8/10. The young Englishman established himself in Guardiola's plans this season and scored the only goal in the win over Tottenham Hotspur after suffering elimination from the Champions League to the Londoners. Living up to the hype and will push the likes of David Silva for more first-team opportunities next term. Reuters
Riyad Mahrez: 6/10. City's record signing has struggled to replicate the form he showed over the past two seasons at Leicester City. Substituted at half-time during the FA Cup final despite City being 2-0 up. AFP
Raheem Sterling: 10/10. A return of 17 league goals and 10 assists does not do justice to the fine form of the young English forward. Has developed into an excellent finisher. Often derided for poor decision-making in games in the past. That criticism no longer applies. His two goals in the FA Cup final only added gloss to a tremendous individual campaign in which he was also voted PFA Player of the Year. Reuters
Leroy Sane: 8/10. There is a nagging sense that Guardiola does not have full faith in the electric German winger. But Sane is a game-changer, as his 10 goals and as many assists attest to. Reuters
Sergio Aguero: 10/10. The Argentine is a guarantor of goals and once again passed the 20 mark in a league campaign. Records continue to tumble for Aguero at City. There is no better finisher in the league. EPA
Gabriel Jesus: 7/10. The Brazilian is an understudy to the prolific Aguero but his team ethic - never more on display than in the FA Cup final rout of Watford - makes him a Guardiola favourite. Reuters
Philippe Sandler: 4/10. The young Dutch defender made his first-team debut in the FA Cup third-round win over Rotherham United. Remains to be seen whether he can force his way into City's galaxy of stars. Getty Images
Arijanet Muric: 6/10. The giant Kosovo international was a fixture in the early rounds of the League Cup before losing his place in the final to Ederson. Has firmly established himself as the Brazilian's understudy. Getty Images
Signing to watch: Rodri
For four transfer windows, City targeted holding midfielders, aware that Fernandinho is in his mid-thirties and, such is his excellence, can feel irreplaceable. In Rodri, bought from Atletico Madrid,
they have finally found someone who be both ball-winner and ball player, starting City attacks and stopping their opponents from breaking.
Talking point: Is this the year Kevin de Bruyne gets the individual honours?
The Belgian was brilliant in 2017/18; sadly for him, so was Mohamed Salah. That 68-game campaign felt a reason why his 2018/19 was interrupted by injuries but there were still times – the Champions League exit to Tottenham or his FA Cup final cameo – when he was exceptional.
De Bruyne’s range of attributes and innate drive mean he can look the best player in the country; so fine that Bernardo Silva, City’s outstanding individual last year, may have to revert to the right wing to accommodate him. He could also replace Kompany as captain.
Updated: August 2, 2019 03:29 PM