Five BOLD football predictions for 2023

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Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid

2022 has been quite the year for football and the next 12 months is shaping up to be even more thrilling.

With that in mind, we're making five bold predictions for weird and wonderful events that could occur in the football world in 2023.

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5 bold predictions for 2023

'Tis the season to make predictions and with so much happening in the next 12 months, we're not hard-pressed to find potentially exciting points to discuss.

From transfers to title winners, here are our bold predictions for 2023.

Arsenal Defy the Odds

Arsenal currently sits top of the Premier League in a move that has certainly shocked the football world.

The gunners have shown ruthless progress in the last few months, setting up a grandstand second half of the season title showdown against Man City.

FIFA 23 Arsenal Martinelli
GUNNING FOR GLORY - Arsenal are top of the Premier League
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Mikel Arteta and his team of tricky Gunners are currently four points clear at the top of the Premier League tree and we're predicting that the Gunners will hold firm and seal their first Premier League title in nearly 20 years.

It's been a long time coming, but with stars like Saka, Smith-Rowe and Odegaard pulling the strings, this Arsenal side could be about to do the impossible and finally overthrow the Man City dominance.

CR7's Sensational Return

Cristiano Ronaldo remains one of the greatest football players of all time, but the 37-year-old is certainly winding down and is set to find a new home after the World Cup.

Rumours have been circulating about a move to Saudi Arabia but those have been quashed by the great man himself.

Instead, we're predicting that CR7 will make a different move, a return trip back to Real Madrid.

Cristiano Ronaldo Real Madrid
SIUUUU - Could Ronaldo return to Madrid for one last rodeo?
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Karim Benzema is set for a spell on the sidelines and who better to return for another season than former talisman Ronaldo?

Certain to help the development of stars like Vinicius Junior, one final trip in Europe's biggest tournament could be just the tonic to reignite Ronaldo's final days on the pitch.

Record Breaking Sums

Speaking of transfers, we're expecting 2023 to be full of them.

So much so that we're predicting that a new record transfer fee will be set next year.

Real Madrid Kylian Mbappe
BIG MONEY MOVES - Mbappe could break the transfer record with a switch to Madrid

Whether it's Mbappe finally moving to Madrid, Pedri turning the heads of one of Europe's elite, or a new owner pumping in the big bucks, we're expecting a major club to outdo PSG and break the transfer record.

That would require a side to spend in the region of £210 Million on a player but there are plenty of contenders out there, and next year could be the moment we see Neymar knocked off his perch as the most expensive player in football.

VAR Holiday

VAR surprises and delights in equal measure, but there's no doubt that its implementation has exposed some ugly issues.

From dodgy offsides to decisions that leave you shaking your head, we think VAR may be due for a small vacation in 2023.

Football Manager VAR
BACK TO BASICS - VAR could use some time off

We're not saying that virtual referees will leave football forever, instead, we think a cooling-off period whilst issues are ironed out is looking far more likely.

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Taking the time to tinker with the technology will allow for glaring issues to be fixed and will permit some time for the football authorities to definitively decide what VAR should be about:

Clear and obvious, or anything we fancy?

Geordie Delight

Newcastle United's takeover has raised some prominent issues in the world of football, the likes of which cannot be overlooked.

That being said, the origins of their money cannot always be discussed, and we think the Toon will throw noise to the side and continue their charge on the pitch.

FIFA 23 Miguel Almiron Newcastle United
TOON ON TOP - Newcastle are set for another year of progress

Eddie Howe's side sits comfortably in the top four right now in the Premier League and we're predicting that 2023 will be the year of black and white.

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Not only do we think Newcastle will lift a domestic trophy in 2023, but we also predict that the Toon army will be top of the Premier League by next Christmas.

You may think us mad, but another summer of top spending could see Newcastle slowly turn into another dominant force in English football's top flight.