DOHA: The competition for the title could be wide open this year with many clubs making smart acquisitions over the summer break.
Who will be the winner is difficult to forecast but one thing is certain, this is sure to be a season of ups and downs with many twists and turns along the way.
A famous absence this season will be that of Al Rayyan whose team and fans will be sorely missed after they suffered relegation.
Al Shahaniya, on the other hand will be in the top flight for the first time in their history and looking to make a name for themselves.
As the beginning of the season fast approaches with the 43rd edition of the Qatar Stars League (QSL) and the participation of all 14 clubs, this could yet be one of the best seasons in recent history.
All the clubs are ready and eager to enter the competition for the first half of the season.
The first round in particular should give a good indication of the teams’ preparations and capabilities for the season ahead.
Lekhwiya, El Jaish and Al Sadd will once more be battling for the top places in the league however Al Sailiya who did so well last season may yet throw a spanner in the works and perhaps finish even higher this year.
The league’s new upstarts - Al Shamal and Al Shahaniya will also be looking to cause a few upsets along the way as both teams are relatively unknown quantities.
Then there are the teams who will be hoping that they do not end up in the relegation battle at the end of the season.
Al Khor and Al Kharaitiyat in particular will not want to endure another season of high drama as they finished in 11th and 12th respectively and just escaped the drop. For those who can’t do without their weekly football fix, don’t worry because the Qatar Stars League is just around the corner so come and support your teams.
The World Cup might be over but the Qatar Stars League is about to start.