To start, I am completely new to EPL and have had only passing contact with soccer throughout my life. Recent events, however, have conspired to draw my interest to the sport. First, I bought FIFA 12 for my XBox. Ostensibly, I had purchased it for my daughter but I've played the game exclusively for the last 3 months. Second, my daughter and I took a trip to Kansas City to catch a game. I absolutely loved the experience and keep looking for opportunities to go to another match.
Like many Americans, I largely ignored soccer except to catch US team World Cup matches every 4 years. Now, though, I feel like I've caught the soccer bug. Add in on going moral dilemmas with following American football (exploitation of "amateurs" in the NCAA and the incapacitating head trauma across all levels) and it seems a great time to give the game a chance.
So, as I find myself pondering spending a season following the EPL and trying to pick a favored team, I stumble across a Grantland article on Manchester City. It's practically a checklist of things I'm looking for in a favored team. Let me preface by stating that I'm a fan of Chicago professional teams which means a combination of the following: 1. owners unwilling to spend money on roster commiserate with revenues generated; 2. front offices that are far, far from progressive in their approach 3. often slow, boring, overly conservative styles of play to appeal to Chicago's working class reputation.
So, reading about an EPL squad with an owner with a strong willingness to spend to win, a new front office focusing on playing to win now while also developing a new youth system, and a manager who wants to play to win, it seems like Man City hits all the points of my checklist.
Am I picking the right team to follow? Any recommendations on books, sites, articles, or posts to read to catch up on the history of EPL and/or top-level Eurpoean soccer? Same for soccer strategy and statistical analysis? I apologize for the length of this post and appreciate any feedback anyone can provide.