With regards to our first 11 and the (potential) improvements:
Robinson - his form will almost definitely be better than last year and he improved vastly towards the end.
Chimbonda, King - yep
Dawson - Excellent season, but I feel with a fit King, Kaboul will be pushing heavily for Dawsons place - a potential improvement - Kaboul is quicker, powerful, more composed on the ball and has a monster shot.
Bale - Not sure if first choice or not but if he is will provide wonderful set pieces and crosses, which Lee cannot do - that could be potentially 5 goals in assists/goals.
Lennon, Jenas - Yep
Zokora - fit and settled, no malaria, surely going to improve on last year. Boateng is ready to come in but we have been told he is very good offensively and very powerful - improvement.
Malbranque/Taarabt - If Taarabt plays, he will bring a lot of magic, we dont know for sure if he will play or not yet.
Berbatov - yep
Keane/Bent - Bent will be an improvement on Keane in a different way, as he is extremely powerful, he brings us something much needed for away games, so i consider Bent to play at least 19 prem matches, and that is an improvement on Mido at least.
I think our squad has improved vastly, but the biggest problem is getting and keeping King fit.
Our main problem is that we need to develop a winning mentality. We have a very good squad (left-hand side aside) but winning the Peace Cup or the Vodacom challenge is not going to do that.
Chelsea, Man U, Liverpool and Arsenal have all won major silverware over the last 10 years and that breeds a culture of winners around a club.
We're probably closer to these 4 teams than anyone else but with such a young team i really do think it would majorly benefit us to win something significant this year. Sounds obvious I know but it will breed a winning mentality and help us move towards truly making that step up.
This is probably going to mean taking on - and beating - more than one or two of the top 4 teams this season ... and if this happens in the right cup competitions this could really help us win something, begin to believe in ourselves more as a team and develop a mentality which will enable us to push for the title in a couple of years.
Oh, and keep Dimitar Berbatov at the club beyond next summer.
And no mention I see about Tom Huddlestone who is, in my opinion, a great reader of the game and one who will create many chances for our strikers. As he matures look for him to command a place in the starting team. You read it here!