SOME brief thoughts on the conclusion of the Premier League to conclude this week.
1) Tony Pulis should, as I wrote a few weeks ago, be named the Premier League manager of the season. That isn't a vote for a Newport man, it's a vote for commonsense. He'll arguably never again enjoy such a remarkable campaign, even impacting the title race.
2) But having said that, it's a shame people have had such a hard time giving due credit to Manuel Pellegrini. He isn't being lauded at all, as if a club with deep pockets should just expect to win the league. If that's the case, why didn't the Special One, Jose Mourinho, land a single piece of silverware this season?
3) Let us dare to dream that the legacy of this season is that clubs realise, thanks to Manchester City and Liverpool, that attacking football and successful football aren't mutually exclusive entities.
4) Can Liverpool kick-on under Brendan Rodgers without talisman Luis Suarez? If Real Madrid really have made him their number one target, we'll probably find out.
5) Has any club, ever, prepared worse for the end of an era than Manchester United? They might have £200 million to invest in new players, but if Chelsea and City decide to match that, they are still likely to be left behind.
6) Gus Poyet. A special manager, perhaps? Steve Bruce, an underrated one?
7) Mark Hughes, a rehabilitated manager, unquestionably. What a terrific season he had with Stoke. Alan Pardew, a nearly disgraced manager?
8) If you stand still in the Premier League you are going backwards fast. Newcastle United could sink like a stone next season. That's the problem you have when 50,000 people are in a stadium and the only one who doesn't care passionately about results is the owner.
9) It is much easier to feel sorry for Norwich than it is for Cardiff or Fulham in terms of relegation. Norwich's only crime was to be too loyal to a manager who never really improved on what Paul Lambert had done. On the other hand, Cardiff and Fulham both served like a step-by-step guide to how to cause your own downfall with bad decisions.
10) In the Premier League where money is king, Swansea have not had a disappointing season. Any campaign that sees the Swans finish higher than 18th; is a good one.