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Right then lads, we've reached the pre-season. Your team's contracted players (and maybe the odd trialist too) make their return to training, and prepare to compete in what may be the toughest Premiership since the rebranding:

Aberdeen welcome to a bunch of new faces and a lot of uncertainty regarding how they will play, but with the aim to push for at least 3rd place in mind.
Celtic coming off a severely disappointing year and who return with a new coach and what could be a fairly different team come MD1, albeit with the same need to push harder for the title.
- After their romp to promotion via the play-offs, Dundee look to return with a vengeance and re-assert themselves as a mainstay Premiership club.
- Along the street, Dundee United find themselves under the enthusiastic but untested Tam Courts, who looks to lead his currently anomalous side to consolidate on the previous season.
Hearts aim to make an immediate impact after their promotion from the Championship, and I'd assume Europe is their aim.
Hibs look to consolidate last season's 3rd place finish, and maybe even push Celtic for the 2nd Champions League spot.
Livingston, fresh off their 2nd consecutive top six finish, will be looking towards getting the hat-trick under David Martindale, though I'm sure a comfortable survival would be just as welcome.
Motherwell, coming off a disappointing season, now are settled under Graham Alexander and will look to rise back up into the top six.
Rangers are fresh off their dominant title win and will want to continue said dominance. Hard to have it better than last season, but the title is always the goal.
Ross County, under new (and controversial) management, will be aiming to stave off relegation once again and try to enjoy comfortable safety.
- Cup double winners St Johnstone will be aiming for consecutive European spots, and to once again prove the doubters wrong.
St Mirren are clearly hell-bent in actually making the top six this year, and are the league's early strengtheners with their current new signings.

Basically, any predictions made and/or altered before 3PM on the 31st July will be included in the end-of-season tally. Anything posted or altered after will not. Happy predicting!

Here's my prediction for the final 2021/22 Scottish Premiership standings:

1st. Rangers
2nd. Celtic
3rd. Hibernian
4th. St Johnstone
5th. Aberdeen
6th. Heart of Midlothian
7th. St Mirren
8th. Dundee
9th. Dundee United
10th. Motherwell
11th. Livingston

12th. Ross County

Edited by RossBFaeDundee

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It's far far too early to predict anything, we've got just under two months until the transfer window closes and clubs so far have only brought in a handful of players. There is a lot of movement to come, perhaps even some Euro stars arriving (or departing) the Scottish league. Of course, with that said, this year is the year the farmers go down. Of that I've never been more certain...

 

 

 

Edited by Ric

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Tipped for relegation before we've even started pre-season training yet, think that's a record even for @Ric 😁

As he says though, far too early to predict. Feels like the first season in a while where there's no real "weak" side as such. County the obvious one I suppose, based on their transfer business so far and last season.

Genuinely no idea how Glass or McPake will deal with top flight football. Could go either way with both, but Aberdeens financial advantages mean they're unlikely to actually get relegated.

Think we're looking at groups of teams just now.

Celtic/Rangers - Amount of financial advantages mean they'll always be challenging as the top two.

Hibernian/St Johnstone/St Mirren - Will all be looking at the top half if squads stay in current shape, and should have enough to avoid a relegation battle, but their fates rest entirely on transfer business, especially in terms of who leaves these clubs.

Aberdeen - Will avoid a relegation battle, but could finish anywhere between 3rd and 10th depending on their manager.

Hearts/Motherwell/Livingston - Will be looking to push for top 6. Probably already have relegation avoiding squads, plus managers who are proven at this level. Could aim high if signings are right but should avoid the bottom 2 regardless.

Dundee/Dundee Utd - Could have a relegation battle, but could also push for the top half. Depends on manager and defensive signings.

Ross County - Look the clear candidates for relegation battle. Depends on how Mackay has done with his time out the game, and who he can bring in to the club.

There's always one team that completely shits the bed though. I'm constantly expecting us to have a disaster, and we need to avoid a slow start this season.

Wonder if we'll see an incredibly tight bottom half again with everyone slitting each others throats.

Edited by RandomGuy.

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One of the two Dundee clubs or St Mirren are getting relegated. 

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1 hour ago, RandomGuy. said:

Tipped for relegation before we've even started pre-season training yet, think that's a record even for @Ric 😁

As he says though, far too early to predict. Feels like the first season in a while where there's no real "weak" side as such. County the obvious one I suppose, based on their transfer business so far and last season.

Genuinely no idea how Glass or McPake will deal with top flight football. Could go either way with both, but Aberdeens financial advantages mean they're unlikely to actually get relegated.

Think we're looking at groups of teams just now.

Celtic/Rangers - Amount of financial advantages mean they'll always be challenging as the top two.

Hibernian/St Johnstone/St Mirren - Will all be looking at the top half if squads stay in current shape, and should have enough to avoid a relegation battle, but their fates rest entirely on transfer business, especially in terms of who leaves these clubs.

Aberdeen - Will avoid a relegation battle, but could finish anywhere between 3rd and 10th depending on their manager.

Hearts/Motherwell/Livingston - Will be looking to push for top 6. Probably already have relegation avoiding squads, plus managers who are proven at this level. Could aim high if signings are right but should avoid the bottom 2 regardless.

Dundee/Dundee Utd - Could have a relegation battle, but could also push for the top half. Depends on manager and defensive signings.

Ross County - Look the clear candidates for relegation battle. Depends on how Mackay has done with his time out the game, and who he can bring in to the club.

There's always one team that completely shits the bed though. I'm constantly expecting us to have a disaster, and we need to avoid a slow start this season.

Wonder if we'll see an incredibly tight bottom half again with everyone slitting each others throats.

You could have shortened that down to ‘apart from the OF, anyone can finish anywhere’. 

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7 minutes ago, Dons_1988 said:

You could have shortened that down to ‘apart from the OF, anyone can finish anywhere’. 

cover4.jpg.c08b62ee4c70c23b91e9a4cb6576c46b.jpg

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1. Rangers
2. Celtic
3. Hibs
4. St Johnstone
5. Aberdeen
6. Hearts
7. St Mirren
8. Motherwell
9. Dundee United
10. Livingston
11. Dundee
12. Ross County

Can't see Celtic getting their act together enough to properly challenge Rangers, who I think will win comfortably again, but there will be a gulf to Hibs in third.

I think St Johnstone will be strong this year. I'd have put them lower if I thought they were going to stick in Europe for a long time, but the fact it's a knockout should give them breathing space to concentrate on the league. And I think they'll do well.

Aberdeen will be incredibly meh all season but sheer spending power will give them a default fifth position. I expect Glass to be under pressure from January at the very latest.

I think Hearts will come back strong and will edge us for the top six.

As with last season, I think there will be a very tight mini-league between us, Well and United. All clear of the drop with little to play for by the time March rolls around.

Very wary of putting Livi as low as I have done, for obvious reasons, but their form absolutely tanked once they knew they were in the top half. I know that was linked to a tougher run of fixtures, but it can be hard to come back from that kind of slide.

I was impressed with Dundee against Killie, but they'll need to invest. I assume they'll do that.

I think it's County's turn to drop this year, but I think the relegation fight could be even closer than last season. No obvious weak candidate this time around, IMO.

Edited by Coventry Saint

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We all need to up our game to relegate the racism apologists from Dingwall. 

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49 minutes ago, The Saintee said:

We all need to up our game to relegate the racism apologists from Dingwall. 

They don't have the Hamilton barrier anymore so unless Uncle Royston get's some of Global Energy's money into that team, it doesn't look the best for them.

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We're comfortably favourites to go down and rightly so as it stands. We might bring some good players but who knows.

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9 hours ago, RandomGuy. said:

Tipped for relegation before we've even started pre-season training yet, think that's a record even for @Ric 😁

As he says though, far too early to predict. Feels like the first season in a while where there's no real "weak" side as such. County the obvious one I suppose, based on their transfer business so far and last season.

Genuinely no idea how Glass or McPake will deal with top flight football. Could go either way with both, but Aberdeens financial advantages mean they're unlikely to actually get relegated.

Think we're looking at groups of teams just now.

Celtic/Rangers - Amount of financial advantages mean they'll always be challenging as the top two.

Hibernian/St Johnstone/St Mirren - Will all be looking at the top half if squads stay in current shape, and should have enough to avoid a relegation battle, but their fates rest entirely on transfer business, especially in terms of who leaves these clubs.

Aberdeen - Will avoid a relegation battle, but could finish anywhere between 3rd and 10th depending on their manager.

Hearts/Motherwell/Livingston - Will be looking to push for top 6. Probably already have relegation avoiding squads, plus managers who are proven at this level. Could aim high if signings are right but should avoid the bottom 2 regardless.

Dundee/Dundee Utd - Could have a relegation battle, but could also push for the top half. Depends on manager and defensive signings.

Ross County - Look the clear candidates for relegation battle. Depends on how Mackay has done with his time out the game, and who he can bring in to the club.

There's always one team that completely shits the bed though. I'm constantly expecting us to have a disaster, and we need to avoid a slow start this season.

Wonder if we'll see an incredibly tight bottom half again with everyone slitting each others throats.

Why so high on St. Mirren?

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25 minutes ago, FortescueFotheringhamSmyth said:

Maybe bought something from a ne'er-do-well in the bogs in the Alamo?

I've heard all the stuff from the Alamo was top notch.

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4 hours ago, staggy1929 said:

We're comfortably favourites to go down and rightly so as it stands. We might bring some good players but who knows.

No bookie has chalked up yet. I doubt you'll be favourites at this stage. Dundee would still be seen as more likely for the drop, but you would be comfortably 2nd in the lists. Uncle Roy is more likely to find a fiver down the back of the sofa than some other chairmen/boards. Bookies won't be keen to have Ross too short, as this would mean offering tempting prices about United, Livi, Well, both sets of Saints and, indeed, Dundee - all of whom are more likely to run into financial trouble than Ross, so long as Uncle Roy remains in good health.

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28 minutes ago, AmericanFan said:

I've heard all the stuff from the Alamo was top notch.

It always smelled of partially combusted Calor gas so you get light-headed without having to buy any booze.

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5 hours ago, staggy1929 said:

We're comfortably favourites to go down and rightly so as it stands. We might bring some good players but who knows.

Time to put that oil money to work.

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Going to push the boat out & make a bold prediction of Hearts winning more games than their previous top flight showing.

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I have two acquaintances who are professional gamblers. One is solely a sports gambler, betting only on two sports. He is keen follower of Scottish football, though he does not bet on football, other than maybe an ante-post wager on his lot to win a cup. Early last season, he mentioned that a friend, who works at an ancient "proper" Scottish university, had run 1,000 simulations of the 2020/21 Premiership season through a computer. Nothing special about that: decent software that will do those type of probability analyses is common these days. He only ran them to the 33-game split. 

At the end of the season, I recalled that the Sheep had nicked 2nd five times - all behind Celtic - and remembered some of the stats on the Erse Cheeks, who won all 1,000 simulations between them. I asked my acquaintance if he still had the figures. He did. Celtic won 755 times to Rangers' 245. In 1,000 simulations, Rangers reached the split unbeaten only 9 times. They matched their 28-5-0 record three times and bettered it three times. Celtic's worst performance in 1,000 simulations was 21-7-5... which still gave them one point more than they got in real life!

Clearly all this ballcocks depends on what info the programmer puts in. I've never met the guy who ran the simulations, but it seems he does this type of thing relatively accurately in several fields. It wasn't very accurate on last season's Premiership though 

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26 minutes ago, FortescueFotheringhamSmyth said:

I have two acquaintances who are professional gamblers. One is solely a sports gambler, betting only on two sports. He is keen follower of Scottish football, though he does not bet on football, other than maybe an ante-post wager on his lot to win a cup. Early last season, he mentioned that a friend, who works at an ancient "proper" Scottish university, had run 1,000 simulations of the 2020/21 Premiership season through a computer. Nothing special about that: decent software that will do those type of probability analyses is common these days. He only ran them to the 33-game split. 

At the end of the season, I recalled that the Sheep had nicked 2nd five times - all behind Celtic - and remembered some of the stats on the Erse Cheeks, who won all 1,000 simulations between them. I asked my acquaintance if he still had the figures. He did. Celtic won 755 times to Rangers' 245. In 1,000 simulations, Rangers reached the split unbeaten only 9 times. They matched their 28-5-0 record three times and bettered it three times. Celtic's worst performance in 1,000 simulations was 21-7-5... which still gave them one point more than they got in real life!

Clearly all this ballcocks depends on what info the programmer puts in. I've never met the guy who ran the simulations, but it seems he does this type of thing relatively accurately in several fields. It wasn't very accurate on last season's Premiership though 

Problem is, the simulation will never allow for teams such as Celtic and Killie utterly shitting the bed.

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