This discussion believes it’s the big hitting players in the 95+ bracket for that make up the difference with their average ratings hitting consistent heights higher than the majority of all other players. When you couple in where the games 2 big stars are, Messi (99) & Ronaldo (98) it’s again no surprise as to where their respective clubs tend to finish.
Here are your 95+ players in T100 currently;
When broken down you’re looking at 17 total players, 6 of whom player for Barca (35%), including the highest rated on SM in Messi (99) & 50% of all players 96+. Chelsea see a good share of the stars with a total of 4 (24%) including 25% of the 96+ players, the individual of course being Ronaldo (98).
Therefore you see 10/17 players, a whopping 59% of the elite players shared between 2 clubs currently, a great achievement by the McKenzie brothers to have secured these big players for their respective clubs & for me is reason as to why we have consistently seen Barca dominate the top throughout T100s history but more recently completely annihilate the rest of the pack. Chelsea have remained within a distance consistently, often taking 2nd in the division if not 3rd before Bayern had to step back from the high ratings & older age bracket to look for long term competition, but haven’t kept within fighting distance all too often for the D1 title.
Of all remaining 7 players in this bracket, they’re all playing for different, individual clubs, namely 1 at Bayern, Ter Stegan, 1 at Juventus, Oblak, previously Busquets (-1), 1 at Dortmund, Van Dijk, 1 at Anderlecht, Griezmann, 1 at Atletico, Aguero, 1 at Hellas, Salah & finally the last player to make up the 4 96+ players in Lewandowski, now at Arsenal. Only 2 of the 95+ find themselves outside of D1 (Hellas, Salah & Arsenal, Lewandowski).
It is the dominance of D1 that perhaps gives evidence as to why this bracket of player is the key to D1 titles as Barcelona have had a history of having a fairly thin squad in number, with a current total of 13 players in the 90+ bracket but not a single player below 92 in what could be a first team 11, some achievement. An additional player over the 90 threshold for Chelsea whom can also field an 11 with no player below the 92 level but of course that 2 player deficit in the 95+ bracket last season saw Chelsea some distance behind Barca. Next up Juventus, a different kettle of fish with last season (11) & now this (12) just the 1 95+ player but a squad of 21 players over the 90 threshold but also having the ability to field a 92+ 11. Bayern, previous title challengers & multiple winners, 1 95+ player in Ter Stegan, a GK alike to Juventus & also able to field a 92+ 11 plus the 16 players that are above the 90+ threshold, a middle ground perhaps between Juventus’ squad depth of 90+ threshold players to that of the thin Barcelona squad with 13 players above 90+. The traditional, but no longer top 4 contenders, interestingly with best players at either ends of the positional spectrum, Ronaldo & Messi in attack, Ter Stegan & Oblak in goal, of course previously Busquets in CM for Juventus giving a different dynamic.
In an analysis of constants & variables, perhaps the biggest constants over the seasons has been the reflection of 95+ players in title winning teams. Barcelona & Bayern the two whom have most consistently challenged & won titles, often the dominant sides in this area, no just the one remaining giant in this 95+ bracket, now in turn dominating the division. Even a gambling man would have a tough time betting against the same outcome in S12 as history & 95+ players suggest as Barca once again chase an unbeaten season & that 100+ point mark.
Points difference predictions for the season 12s previous ‘top 4’ upon 95+ players & squad depths aforementioned;
Barca 100+ points
Chelsea 75-85 points
Juventus 65-75 points
Bayern 60-70 points
Perhaps we will see the 95+ players of; Anderlecht, Dortmund & Atletico push their sides into those top 4 spots, it could well be that we see PSG once again upset the apple cart in the ratings race to pip them all into the top 4 again. As for the final 2 95+ players, who would bet against Hellas & Arsenal finishing in the automatic spots for promotion to D1.
Of course, ratings are going to change. Not long ago, Bayern had 2x 95+ players with Luka Modric accompanying Ter Stegan. Will one of, both of, or none of Mane & Sterling receive reviews to join this bracket of 95+ players for Anderlecht & Juventus in the coming week(s), will Chelsea get another 95+ in the form of Alisson & finally could Benfica join the 95+ club with Mbappe in the near future? For Season 12, some are more likely than others, but what appears to be a certainty is that Barca & Chelsea will once again lead the way for 95+ players & therefore you could assume the top 2 spots in Division 1.