I will have a full team by team analysis later but here is the result of the short evaluation for the 8 sides based on 5 criteria ( all rated out of 20).
I have updated the rating following latest she kicks magazine preview that updated us on the changs for the teams through the winter on those criteria.
a) squad stability during the winter transfer window
b) youth/experience balance
c) players quality signed during the winter transfer window
d) training schedule and frequency
e) squad depth
Here are the final scores :
1. Liverpool 74
2. Chelsea 71
3. Birmingham 66
4. Arsenal 64
5. Everton and Notts 63
7. Bristol 61
8. Man City 59
Basically Liverpool huge favorites to retain their title, Chelsea a bit behind and the other 6 teams just very close at the moment. That is how open the season will be.
As far as I am concerned no teams are favourite to be relegated. Probably all 6 teams besides Liverpool and Chelsea could end up at the bottom place. All is needed is a bad start and it will be a long (short) struggle as 14 games is not leaving much chances to recover from a bad start.