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With the new Premier League season set to get underway,

It is time to look at the teams taking part and gauge their chances for the season ahead.

Premier League 2014/15 Preview - Part 1Thus, we bring you a four-part preview of every team in the top division of English football, from new boys QPR all the way up to reigning champions Manchester City.

20. Queens Park Rangers

Will this be a more successful spell in the Premier League?

Harry Redknapp and his men just about made it back into the Premier League by the skin of their teeth, with a last-gasp Bobby Zamora penalty giving them the win over a Derby County side that was arguably the more deserving of the two teams. However, the fact that they got the job done when it mattered most is an inherently Redknapp-esque trait, and will surely serve them well in their bid to remain in the top division for a longer period than their previous stint.

Transfer funds have never been a problem for the London club, and recent additions promise to make Loftus Road a tough place to go to in the coming season. The immensely experienced Rio Ferdinand will bring a lot for the club not only on the pitch, but off it as well, especially in showing their major summer coup, Steven Caulker, all there is to know about the art of defending. With Juventus’ Chilean utility man Mauricio Isla also on his way, the club looks very good heading into the new season with a wealth of not only Premier League, but also European experience in their ranks.

QPR can expect to be there and there abouts, but one feels that relegation can be avoided if the big signings live up to their billing, which was conspicuously absent when the club last took part in the Premier League.

19. Burnley

Will Burnley fire on all cylinders?

Sean Dyche and his men had a very impressive Championship campaign last season, in which the likes of Danny Ings and Sam Vokes blossomed as players, helping the club to comfortable second-placed finish, and automatic promotion, behind eventual champions Leicester City. Burnley play a good, entertaining style of football while managing to remain disciplined and tight defensively, which bodes them well going up against Premier League attacks. Also, another major advantage that Burnley could have over their new opposition is the talent-identification skill of manager Sean Dyche, which saw the likes of Ashley Barnes and Michael Kightly blossom under his tutelage. Who knows what some of his new signings might achieve?

Speaking of new signings, the addition of Steven Reid from West Bromwich Albion and Matthew Taylor from West Ham United will add some Premier League experience to the club, while Lukas Jutkiewicz and Marvin Sordell could be fantastic bargain back-up options to the aforementioned Ings and Vokes.

It will not be easy at all for Burnley to stay up, but there is cause for optimism among fans, and we have previously seen that with a good manager and talented players, anything can happen.

18. Leicester City

Leicester City have the potential to surprise.

Sweeping all before them in the Championship, Leicester City deservedly triumphed in the notoriously tough second division of English football. Manager Nigel Pearson found the perfect balance between attack and defence, with the partnership of Jamie Vardy and David Nugent blowing any opposition away emphatically, while goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel managed to live up to his mythical surname with a rock solid season between the posts. However, the relative inexperience of the squad at the very highest level, the Premier League, is a huge drawback for them.

The additions of Aston Villa midfielder Marc Albrighton and Matthew Upson will look to remedy this and add some more quality in depth to the squad with the physically imposing task of trying to survive in the Premier League laying ahead. There is no doubt that there is the potential to surprise in this Leicester City squad, though, and if there is one of the newly promoted clubs to make the biggest splash, you would bet your money on it being Leicester City.

As always for newly-promoted clubs, it will be extremely tough to stay up, but there is a quiet optimism among all associated with the club that this is a realistic target for the coming campaign.

17. West Bromwich Albion

Time to shine for Saido Berahino?

It is fair to say that things did not go to plan last season for West Brom. Early struggles under Steve Clarke saw the manager who impressed so much in the previous season being unceremoniously, and many feel unnecessarily, sacked. The arrival of Pepe Mel did little to improve their fortunes, and the numerous controversies surrounding striker Nicolas Anelka did not do their campaign any favors at all. In fact, they can be very, very thankful that they survived, which gives them the opportunity to right the wrongs of last season.

New manager Alan Irvine has an abundance of Premier League experience to call upon in his first season in charge, with the likes of Ben Foster, Jonas Olsson and young break-out star Saido Berahino all capable of brilliance when utilised correctly and in a stable environment. The addition of former Manchester City centre-back Joleon Lescott is also a huge coup for the club, while centre-forward Brown Ideye comes with very impressive credentials from Ukrainian side Dynamo Kiev.

Improvement is expected on last season, and this squad is very capable of finishing safely in a mid-table position. However, the potential for self-destruction is there, and things are capable of all going horribly wrong.

16. Hull City

Can Hull City continue to impress?

Coming off of a fantastic first season back in the Premier League, Steve Bruce and his Hull City side are surely feeling very confident of another successful campaign. The likes of Shane Long, Tom Huddlestone, Nikica Jelavic and Jake Livermore proved to be inspired signings over the course of last season, and Hull City fans will be hoping for more of the same this time around.

Indeed, the signings of Tom Ince and Robert Snodgrass look to be more of the same, but there is always the risk of a so-called second-season syndrome. The club did start tailing off in the latter stages of last season, and any complacency could end up being fatal. It has to be said, though, that Steve Bruce is an immensely experienced manager who will surely not rest on his laurels. There is a belief and confidence among everybody associated with Hull City Football Club after their exploits in the league and cup competitions last season, which promises a very entertaining coming campaign.

The club is expected to stay up next season, but as has been proven before, anything can happen. Complacency, as alluded to previously, is perhaps the greatest risk, but a comfortable mid-table finish is well within their capabilities.

More Premier League 2014-15 previews in the series
Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Originally published at inthestandsport.com

Post written by Marco Conradie, Twitter: @MarcoConradie10
for InTheStandSport, Blog: inthestandsport.com, Twitter: @InTheStandSport

Note: The views expressed within this blog post are those of the contributing author, and may not necessarily reflect those of MatchDayApp Limited, its representatives or associated partners.

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