Where Was the Premier League a Decade Ago?
Premier League Winners - Chelsea (86 Points)
Breaking United Dominance
Manchester United had been Premier League champions for three years running going into the end of the decade, scooping up three titles between 2007 and 2009; however, their dominance at the top came to an end this season as Chelsea were rejuvenated under Carlo Ancelotti.
The Champions League specialist had only come to West London in the summer of 2009, but quickly installed a highly intensive and forward thinking approach that saw them romp to some pretty huge wins over the season, including an 8-0 home win over Wigan and a 0-5 away win against Portsmouth.
Despite losing the world's best player in Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer, Sir Alex Ferguson's Manchester United rallied well throughout most of the season and actually won the same amount of games that season as Chelsea. They still possessed the best defence in the league, but would ultimately end the season trailing the Blues by a single point.
The likes of Liverpool and Arsenal were in the midsts of transitional periods and struggled to keep pace with those at the top of the table and the formation of the league's current 'big six' set of teams was finalised by the improved performances of Spurs (who finished 4th) and Man City (who rose up to 5th).
Chelsea 2009/10 Highlights
Relegated - Burnley (30 Points), Hull City (30 Points), Portsmouth (19 Points)
Portsmouth's Administration Woes Dominate Proceedings
Portsmouth's off-field issues resulted in them producing one of the most dismal records in top division history. Pompey were docked nine points for entering into administration, had to wait until October for their first win and would go onto record one of the worst tallies in Premier League history with just 19 points from their 38 games.
Burnley had only been promoted to the Premier League the season before but, despite an impressive early season win against Manchester United, struggled to match the intensity of the Premier League pretty much throughout their campaign. Manager Owen Coyle jumped ship in January, the Clarets racked up 24 losses and mustered only 30 points from their 38 games.
Hull had finished the previous season by clinging onto their Premier League status by the thinnest of margins. It was clear the gig was up for them in 2009/10 however, with the Tigers sacking infamous manager Phil Brown deep into the second half of the season as they embarked on a campaign that included shipping well over 70 goals and hauling just 30 points.
Golden Boot Winner - Didier Drogba (29)
The Ultimate Big Game Player
Over the course of his career in West London, Didier Drogba would become known as the world's best 'big game player'. Delivering the most vital performances on the biggest stages possible, he was the man Chelsea turned to in finals, high stakes games and when the chips were down. 2009/10 however was a season where Drogba kicked on and made himself the go-to guy in almost all of Chelsea's league games.
The Ivorian striker netted a whopping 37 goals in all competitions, with 29 of them coming across the year's league triumph. His main rival for the season's golden boot was Manchester United's Wayne Rooney, who was easily in the midst of his prime at the end of the 2010s. The England forward finished the Premier League campaign three goals behind Drogba on 26 goals for the season.
Former England striker Darren Bent finished third in the race for the golden boot, finishing the season on 24 goals in a remarkably productive personal season.
Memorable Match - Manchester United 4 - 3 Manchester City (20th September 2009)
Owen Seals An Unforgettable Win
The 153rd Manchester Derby was one of the most high profile and memorable fixtures in Premier League history. The takeover of Manchester City had hit full flow by now, with the Cityzens attempting to stamp their intent to become of the land's best with the controversial signing of former United striker Carlos Tevez.
The game itself was intense, hot-headed and swung from end to end as United took the lead three times over the ninety minutes, only to be pegged back three times by their cross-town rivals. Michael Owen was introduced from the bench with just over ten minutes to go and found a 96th minute winner, breaking City hearts and sealing easily the most infamous Manchester United win in derby history.
Sir Alex Ferguson labelled the win the 'best derby in history', while City manager Mark Hughes bemoaned the extensive injury time enforced by referee Martin Atkinson. Man City would end up missing out on Champions League football that season by three vital points.