Premier League Christmas Review and Predictions ⚽️👌

Premier League Christmas Review and Predictions ⚽️👌


I am really really rubbish at predicting football. I just am. It’s never been something I’m very good at. Ever. But I still do it, because I know how many people (about 4) like reading my football prediction posts. So here’s another one. And since I haven’t written a football post at all this season this one is pretty massive

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At the start of the season I boldly predicted who would come where in the league this season. My predictions were:

  1. Man City

  2. Man United

  3. Tottenham

  4. Liverpool

  5. Chelsea

  6. Arsenal

  7. West Ham

  8. Everton

  9. Stoke

  10. Leicester

  11. Southampton

  12. Crystal Palace

  13. Middlesborough

  14. Bournemouth

  15. Swansea

  16. West Brom

  17. Sunderland

  18. Watford

  19. Hull

  20. Burnley

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So how have I done so far? Here’s how it compares to the current table (time of writing 23/12)…

Team August Prediction Christmas Position Difference!
Man City 1 3 -2
Man United 2 6 -4
Tottenham 3 5 -2
Liverpool 4 2 +2
Chelsea 5 1 +4
Arsenal 6 4 +2
West Ham 7 13 -6
Everton 8 9 -1
Stoke 9 11 -2
Leicester 10 15 -5
Southampton 11 7 +4
Crystal Palace 12 17 -5
Middlesborough 13 14 -1
Bournemouth 14 10 +4
Swansea 15 19 -4
West Brom 16 8 +8
Sunderland 17 18 -1
Watford 18 12 +6
Hull 19 20 -1
Burnley 20 16 +4

So I’ve done very badly again obviously! I so far haven’t got a single position right, and only 4 one off. So who has done much better or worse than I expected?

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West Brom (Predicted 16th, Currently 8th)

The Baggies are on a roll! Tony Pulis has them playing better, defending very well and grinding out results superbly! Always a threat from set-pieces, West Brom have scored 23 goals in 17 games so far, and one particular shining star has been Salomon Rondon, scoring 7 this campaign including a quality hat-trick against Swansea. If they keep up this level of performance, a top 10 finish could be on the cards for the pre-season relegation contenders.

West Ham (Predicted 7th, Currently 13th)

Oh, Slaven, what’s gone wrong mate?! They had a superb season last time out, and with a huge move to the London Stadium and some seemingly very smart signings, most people thought they’d have another fantastic season and challenge for European places. It’s been as far from that as possible. They have been very poor, sitting nervously just 5 points above the relegation zone. In the last few weeks they have picked up the pace, gaining 7 points from a possible 9, but humiliating results against Arsenal and Manchester United are still raw and the Hammers need a big first few months of 2017 if they are to finish as highly as a team like them should this year.

Leicester (Predicted 10th, Currently 15th)

Championes, championes, ole ole ole. Well the feelings of joy last year have quickly disintegrated, as the champions face the very real danger of relegation come the end of this season. I think they will stay up comfortably in the end, but to do that they need to turn things around and fast. Their 4-2 win over Manchester City seemed to be a sign of things to come with the break from Champions League football giving them a chance to focus on the Premier League, but their 2-2 draw with Stoke was disappointing although they showed some heart to come from behind. They should finish comfortably in mid-table at the end of the season, but if any fans were wishing for their momentum from last time out to continue, they have been cruelly silenced.

Manchester United (Predicted 2nd, Currently 6th)

The wheels on Jose’s bus are falling off, crumbling, struggling, the wheels on Jose’s bus are in a mess, all season long.

The defenders on the bus have been awful, terrible, no good at all, the defenders on the bus have been very poor, all season long.

Paul Pogba’s on the bus but he got lost, inconsistent and quite bad (!!), Paul Pogba cost the bus a ton of cash, but he’s a bit 💩.

United are struggling, performing badly and are 13 points off the league leaders – will they even make the top 4?

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So what about my updated predictions for the end of the season??

Position Team
1 Chelsea
2 Manchester City
3 Liverpool
4 Arsenal
5 Manchester United
6 Tottenham
7 Everton
8 Southampton
9 West Ham
10 Stoke
11 West Brom
12 Leicester
13 Crystal Palace
14 Watford
15 Bournemouth
16 Middlesborough
17 Sunderland
18 Swansea
19 Burnley
20 Hull

There’s still a lot of the season to go, and who knows what the table will be like come May, but the title race and the relegation battle are already hotting up, and everyone is braced for an explosive rest of the season! 💥

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Countdown to Kick-Off: New Blog!!!

Countdown to Kick-Off: New Blog!!!


In preparation for the Premier League season, I have started up a new football blog with my brother, Jeddy, called ‘Anfield A to Z’.

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It is, of course, a Liverpool blog, dedicated to posting about the mightiest Red men around. I will try to be less biased on blametheblogger as now I can be biased there too! Of course, if you love to read all my football articles you will enjoy this website too, and if you love all my quizzes, my brother has made some great ones over on Anfield A to Z.

Click here to visit Anfield A to Z

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Countdown to Kick-Off: It’s Back! ‘Football Frenzy’, the New Football Game

Countdown to Kick-Off: It’s Back! ‘Football Frenzy’, the New Football Game


Following the popularity of Feisty Footy last season, to celebrate this year I’ve made a brand new game based on the same principles as the last – Football Frenzy!

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Football frenzy is a game which involves picking players and a team which you think will perform the best each month. It works on the basis of FUT Draft, but you pick one from four players in each position, plus a team of the month, and you get Fantasy Football style points based on how your picks do in real life! Each month the players and teams available will change and you need to adjust your starting XI based on the next few fixtures.

The game is open to anyone, but make sure you pick your new team each month!

Click here to pick your team for August!

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Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Relegation Battle)

Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Relegation Battle)


The 6 teams I think will be scrapping it out for their Premier League status are featured in this post in my countdown to kick-off series that you can find here. This post is the final part of my preview of each team’s chances this season (but remember, all transfers after 9th Aug are not taken into account). I’ll probably fail the predictions miserably and one of the following 6 teams will win the league… but anyway, let’s get on with it…

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15. Swansea

Francesco Guidolin was a great appointment last year, keeping the Swans up comfortably in the end. It will be hard this time, but new owners have shown promise by giving Guidolin money to invest. Leroy Fer is a good buy, and they have kept hold (so far) of prized asset Gylfi Sigurdsson, who will have to play a pivotal role yet again. However, a problem area is up front, as after selling Bafetimbi Gomis, Eder, Andre Ayew and Alberto Paloschi, they as yet have only brought in one out-and-out striker in Fernando Llorente – and it is a gamble whether or not he can do the business. If he can, or if they can find goals from elsewhere, then they will stay up.

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16. West Brom

New owner, and very little transfer activity, all means that West Brom are no better off than they were when they finished 14th last year. Matt Phillips will have a big role to play in a season which could go either way. They may well go down, and haven’t won a game since 6th March, but I have faith in Pulis’ ridiculous ability to never get relegated, even with the some of the worst players in the league! I reckon it’ll be close, but they will secure their status as a Prem team at least for one more year.

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17. Sunderland

Losing Sam Allardyce was a huge blow for the Black Cats, who narrowly avoided relegation last year and probably would’ve gone down if it wasn’t for some Jermain Defoe heroics. The replacement is David Moyes, a manager who is good at working at mid-table clubs like Everton, but may not be what Sunderland need – he might’ve come a bit too early. Now all they need is to stay in the division. As it stands, in a crazy summer with managerial changes, Papy Djilobodji is the only signing they’ve made so far, and you have to expect that David Moyes is given money to spend. It will be a long, hard struggle, and Moyes will have his work cut out, but I reckon they will manage to stay up in the end.

Just.

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18. Watford

Quique Sanchez Flores was an excellent manager for Watford, comfortably keeping them up last year. However, the board decided to sack him for some reason not understood by man. Walter Mazzari, and a new record signing – Isaac Success, a young, strong and quick striker – have joined, and it is all change at Vicarage Road. If Success, and fellow strikers Deeney and Ighalo, can carry the team, then maybe they will survive, but it will be hard as they don’t seem to have much else about them apart from a potent frontline. They will go down.

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19. Hull

Chaos. Steve Bruce fell out with the owners and left. The owners fell out with the club and are looking to sell. The club haven’t signed anyone with good enough credentials for the league, and have sold prized asset Mohamed Diame to Newcastle. It will take a miracle to save this sinking ship, and if I didn’t expect something to happen to bring in some players and a manager quickly, I would back them to finish rock-bottom. Certainly not what the club wanted after their famous, amazing day at Wembley in May.

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20. Burnley

Sean Dyche has done a fantastic job at getting promoted a second time at a club with such little money. In ‘preparation’ for the biggest league in the world, the cash-strapped club could only spare £1.1 million so far on transfers. Much rests on Andre Gray to get important goals to win games, and even if he performs they don’t have very much about them to pose any threat and look very much like a Championship team, not a Premier League one. Unfortunately, they will come last.

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“Mate, we’re gonna do a Leicester!”

Will any of these teams do a Leicester? Are Watford, Hull and Burnley doomed? Have my predictions for this year’s most unpredictable season been any good? Have a go yourself below!

 

 

Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Mid-Table)

Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Mid-Table)


So, onto the chunk of the teams in the league, and occupying positions 7-14 are the 8 teams that I believe are incapable of mounting a challenge for top 4 football but will not be drawn into a relegation scrap. Of course, I’m going to get it totally wrong and all these teams will win the league and get relegated and stuff, but it’s worth a guess, right?!

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7. West Ham

West Ham have a new stadium and a new dream – Champions League football. they came very close last year, and Dmitri Payet, who they have held on to, seems to be getting better and better. Slaven Bilic is perhaps the most underrated boss in the country, and his signings have been shrewd. Feghouli could have a banging season on the flanks, and Andre Ayew will help plug a lack of goals from up top. They’ll have a great year, but won’t quite challenge the top 6.

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8. Everton

Ronald Koeman is a great replacement for the underwhelming Roberto Martinez, and will bring the best out of his squad eventually. The thing is, Everton always seem to be so much better on paper than they actually are in matches. You have to be cautious in giving them high predictions as they often fail to deliver, but if Koeman can do a good job, and get a lot of players like Gerard Deulofeu and Ross Barkley (in my fantasy footy team) – not to mention try and keep hold of Romelu Lukaku – then they can finish in a solid top half place.

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9. Stoke

Can Stoke City finish 9th for a fourth straight season? I don’t see any reason why not! Their most significant acquisition is Joe Allen, who as a Red I personally wanted Klopp to keep. He will add tenacity to their midfield, which should go well with the athleticism of Gianelli Imbula who I was very impressed with last campaign. Shaqiri and Arnautovic will both be vital – as long as they can ward off the interest in them – but they will remain a low-scoring team unless they succeed in brining in Saido Berahino. Either way, they are a solid team and credit has to go to Mark Hughes who has done a fantastic job at the Brittania.

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10. Leicester

After their superb season last time out, this year is their ‘reward’ – Champions League football and the status of ‘Champions’. They can’t realistically hope for another finish as good as the one before, and losing Kante is a huge blow – he was the heartbeat of their team, and was irreplaceable like Gerrard was to Liverpool. As long as they keep Mahrez, though, they should remain stable enough, and good signings like Mendy and Musa (plus squad players for depth they need for Europe) should see them into the top half again.

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11. Southampton

They have arguably sold off their two biggest assets – Ronald Koeman and Sadio Mane. However, they have sold before and remained stable and performed well, and both their academy and recruitment policy seem to unearth players that can do the business. Players like Nathan Redmond and Pierre-Emile Holjberg will add another dimension to the club and should fill gaps left by Mane and Wanyama, and another goalscorer to replace Graziano Pelle aside, they are a settled, fully-formed and good squad.

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12. Crystal Palace

This season could go either way for Palace. Pardew has got into a habit of going on a fantastic winning run and then collapsing into a terrible run. I reckon he has the quality in his team to stop that trend and have a solid season with no relegation risk, but at Selhurst Park you can never be certain. They have sold plenty of passengers in their squad and have had a solid window, signing the excellent Steve Mandanda in goal for free, Andros Townsend to add more pace to Bolasie and Zaha (with Dwight Gayle going the other way, to Newcastle) and James Tomkins from West Ham to sure up the defence. I like this side so I reckon they’ll have a good year.

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13. Middlesborough

They impressed me last year and have strengthened for life in the top flight, bringing in Marten de Roon at the back, Victor Valdes for some excellent goalkeeping quality and loaned another proven player in, Alvaro Negredo, to grab some goals. As long as Aitor Karanka keeps his head, they will stay up comfortably, playing good football, as the club have shown they have the desire and funding to build a stable Premier League club at the Riverside.

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14. Bournemouth

They have invested over £37million on new players that are young and have something to prove, quite like their charming manager Eddie Howe. He, and his squad, are young and have lots of potential, and last season at times were excellent to watch, and the likes of Jordan Ibe, Lewis Cook and Brad Smith will only add to the exciting range of talent that will comfortably lead Bournemouth to a better position than last campaign.

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So there you have it! Watch as it goes totally wrong… but that is my prediction for the mid-table places this season, and you can submit your predictions below:

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Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Top 6)

Countdown to Kick-Off: Team-by-Team Preview (Top 6)


It’s impossible to call who will win the Premier League 16/17, and even who will qualify for the Champions League, but as I’m such an awesome blogger and a general great guy, I’ve decided to have a guess even though it’s a total shot in the dark and I’ll totally humiliate myself. What I am pretty sure of is that there will be a ‘mini-league’ at the top, of the best 6 teams in the league – the Manchester clubs, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham and Liverpool – and here is how I think it will all end up.

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1. Man City

Everyone involved in the club has been raving about how Pep Guardiola has totally transformed the club in these past few weeks. Lots of players say they have come on in leaps and bounds, with Fabian Delph saying he has learnt more in three weeks than in his entire career! Guardiola has come into the most talented group of players in the league, even before he made any changes – in Joe Hart they have a solid keeper, Kompany is the best centre-back in the league, Yaya Toure is still a powerhouse in his old age, De Bruyne and Silva are two of the best attacking midfielders ever and Sergio Aguero guarantees 20 goals a season. He has improved all the players, and taught them his methods that rules the roost in Spain and Germany. What’s more, he has been given all the funding he wants – spending nearly £150 million. Leroy Sane brings some much-needed pace to a midfield that is getting on a bit, but will he spell the end for Raheem Sterling? Ilkay Gundogan plugs a potential gap in a deep-lying midfield position, and Nolito adds strength in depth going forward. Perhaps most importantly is the signing of John Stones, whose youth and pace, along with his composure on the ball, is something never seen before in an English defender and is the style of defence Guardiola preferred in his former clubs – passing out from the back.

What we have seen from City that we haven’t seen from the other big teams with new bosses is a clear sense of direction – all the signings fit into a set style and system, and Guardiola is the perfect man to deliver the crown of Champions back to the Etihad. And you get the feeling, with the ever-ageing core of the team that won their first two Premier Leagues, that this really has to be their year.

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2. Man United

Jose Mourinho, a serial winner, has linked up with Manchester United, serial winners, so there can only be one of two outcomes – they win all there is to win or end up being too big for each other and fall apart (as Mourinho often does).

Their signings have been mega and have hit the headlines. Eric Bailly cost millions, but he was fantastic in the Community Shield and could become the new United centre-back cult hero. Henrik Mkhitaryan is a great player, an assist king who also has a few goals up his sleeve. It is very easy to see where he fits in in the United midfield, and he will certainly bring something to the table provided he quickly settles into English football. Of course, Zlatan Ibrahimovic brings with another big ego and on just a single year contract I can’t really see this one being a winning formula – he is just not mobile enough and as United lack pace to run off him it will be vital that Mourinho plays Lingard or Rashford to compliment Zlatan – something that Mourinho is unlikely to do. And finally Paul Pogba. He is a monster of a player that they sold a few years ago, then bough back for £87.5 million more. Nevertheless, he will bring some much-needed steel to the midfield and is a true maestro – he can do everything. Whether he is worth the world-record price tag, we’ll have to wait and see…

What is for certain is that Mourinho’s style brings success in the Premier League and after maybe a period of adaption they will click defensively and learn how to park a bus. They will have a solid season and threaten, but never quite overcome, Man City. Europa League football will be awkward and they have a bloated squad that may struggle to click at first, but they have the players and manager in there somewhere to have a successful campaign.

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3. Tottenham

They have had a low-key transfer window, with Mauricio Pochettino treading lightly, not overthinking and throwing money at his squad. Two interesting buys, Victor Wanyama and  Vincent Janssen, have to prove themselves but from the masterstrokes we saw last year from the Argentine boss we should all trust him on this one.

Tottenham’s season could go either way. They seemed mentally frail and their young age was obvious at the business end of last year, and could struggle to cope with the bigger names at bigger clubs. However, they could take advantage of other big teams above them going through a period of transition, and their young squad can only get better this year. I don’t think they will do badly, but they won’t top last season’s third place. I do, however, think that of all the London clubs, they have the best ‘team’ – excellent in every department. They may well challenge the Manchester clubs but will come just short, in a close third place.

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4. Liverpool

The biased Liverpool fan is at it again! But I do have some very well thought out reasons that I came up with, so humour me please…

Under Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool made the most goalscoring opportunities last year. They reached two finals, and played excellently against teams like Manchester City and Chelsea. Klopp’s heavy-metal football is enthralling and really entertaining to watch, and he has transformed mid-table teams into title challengers before, working miracles at Borussia Dortmund.

In lots of games last year Liverpool looked unstoppable, and if they can consistently play like they did at those times, with passion and fight in abundance, and the quality of Coutinho, Wijnaldum, Mane and co. thrown in, they could have a storming season and come top of the pile. They have no European football to contend with, and Klopp recently said that he is perfectly happy with his squad. On the contrary, despite all the attacking potency, defence is still an issue – Mignolet still looks a bit feeble and Karius is out with a broken hand in goal, and Alberto Moreno is painful to watch as he simply can’t defend. At centre-back, Ragnar Klavan and Joel Matip have been brought in, and Sakho and Lovren are both improving, but all 4 look wobbly at times and struggle with injury. Emre Can has the potential to be Liverpool’s most important player this year – he was getting better and better as last term progressed, and his protection of the back 4 along with his energy could make all the difference if Liverpool can mount a decent title challenge.

Overall, in most games I think it could be a case of you score 3, we’ll score 4 for Liverpool because Klopp’s defence still looks shaky. For Liverpool it could also go either way but I think another year or two is needed before a proper title tilt.

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5. Chelsea

After a disastrous year last year, in which they finished tenth, they brought in Antonio Conte, who in turn didn’t bring in enough players to improve his squad. N’Golo Kante should add some energy and Michy Batshuayi has potential, but both are relatively unproven at the highest level. That will leave it up to Conte’s coaching and the class of 2014/15 to deliver a good season at the Bridge, where they will probably just want to reach Champions League football again and then build from there.

I think they have the capability to do that, but they could very easily fail in their goal. They have some amazing players, but it didn’t work for them at all last year, and with the strength of all the other teams this time round, who can safely say they’ll perform the year? They may struggle to find goals, and at the back they will rely on Conte to improve their leakiness. It’s a tricky one, and they may well win the league under Conte (who impressed as Italy boss at the Euros), but I think they need a year to get over last term’s turmoil and start to begin again.

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6. Arsenal

It takes a brave man to back Arsenal to finish outside the Top 4, something that they haven’t done in my lifetime… But that’s exactly what I think will happen this year. Whilst every other team has strengthened, trained and worked, Wenger has recruited the services of only Granit Xhaka, who will do little to improve gaping holes at centre-back and up front as he is another midfielder! They came second last year – but that was due to other teams collapsing, and this year all 5 big teams that finished below them last year look a lot better then the Gunners this time out. Sanchez and Ozil will need to salvage some success otherwise Arsene Wenger will end his contract on a low note.

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So there you have my reasoning behind a controversial prediction for the Top 6 teams this year. Feel free to laugh at me when Hull win the league and City, United and Spurs go down…

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Submit your own predictions and reasons below:

 

 

Countdown to Kick-Off: Premier League 16/17 Predictions

Countdown to Kick-Off: Premier League 16/17 Predictions


It’s that time again. The start of a new season, full of anticipation, excitement and unpredictability. We come into it off the back of the most remarkable sporting story of recent times, with Leicester triumphing at 5000-1. In my last season’s predictions, I messed up really badly, backing Chelsea to win it and Leicester to prop up the table at the bottom! Let’s hope I do  a bit better this time…

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  1. Man City

  2. Man United

  3. Tottenham

  4. Liverpool

  5. Chelsea

  6. Arsenal

  7. West Ham

  8. Everton

  9. Stoke

  10. Leicester

  11. Southampton

  12. Crystal Palace

  13. Middlesborough

  14. Bournemouth

  15. Swansea

  16. West Brom

  17. Sunderland

  18. Watford

  19. Hull

  20. Burnley

The quality of managers joining the league, plus some of the biggest players in football, mean that this is probably the hardest league to predict in years. Any of the top 6 could win it, any of the bottom 9 could go down, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this prediction is as rubbish as the rest!

Keep an eye out for more build-up throughout the next few days before the big kick-off at the KC Stadium, including the highly-anticipated return of Feisty Footy, as ‘Football Frenzy’!

Submit your own predictions and reasons below:

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