the importance of goal difference

How important is Goal Difference in the quest for the Premier League Crown? Not very! There has only been one season in the 25 year history of the UK football Premiership when goal difference decided the tittle. Nobody will ever forget the final day of the 2012 season, Manchester United were celebrating winning the title by winning 1-0 away at Sunderland, Manchester City were 2 goals down at home to Queens Park Rangers after 90 minutes - United would win by 2 points..... then City scored 2 goals in stoppage time, equalling United's 89 points, but winning the title on goal difference.

winners on goal difference

If the Premier League was decided on goal difference then Tottenham Hotspur would have been the winners of the last two seasons Premiership race!

In 18 of the 25 Premier League seasons the teams with the best goal difference actually won the title, which makes sense really, but in 8 seasons the teams with the best GD were pipped to the post. Here are the Goal Difference 'winners' and the actual positions they achieved.

SeasonTeamGDPosition
1993Manchester United361
1994Manchester United421
1995Manchester United492
1996Manchester United381
1997Newcastle United332
1998Manchester United472
1999Manchester United431
2000Manchester United521
2001Manchester United481
2002Arsenal431
2003Arsenal432
2004Arsenal471
2005Chelsea571
2006Chelsea501
2007Manchester United561
2008Manchester United581
2009Liverpool502
2010Chelsea711
2011Manchester United411
2012Manchester City641
2013Manchester United431
2014Manchester City651
2015Manchester City452
2016Tottenham Hotspur343
2017Tottenham Hotspur602