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December 30, 2010

New Year: political and sporting predictions for 2011.

It’s that time of year when we all suddenly think we’re in possession of Mystic Meg qualities, and forge predictions for the next 12 months. My forecast for 2010 was decidedly average – I was right about the General Election outcome, but was wrong about pretty much everything else. I said Gordon Brown would step down as an MP after the election, I said Nick Clegg would be replaced as Lib Dem leader, I said that England would win the World Cup and I said Harriet Harman would be the next permanent Labour leader (I can only assume I’d been on the Christmas Shiraz before that one). Anyway, let’s see how I do this year. I give you 11 political/economic predictions for 2011:

1) Labour will win the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election, with an increased majority (around 2,000).
2) In May’s local elections, the Tories and Lib Dems will each lose around 600 seats net. Labour to benefit.
3) Labour will fall just short of a majority in the Scottish Parliament elections in May.
4) The ‘No’ campaign will win the AV referendum in May, 65%-35%.
5) The possibility of Ed Miliband being the subject of an attempted coup will be openly discussed.
6) Dominic Grieve will replace Ken Clarke as Justice Secretary.
7) Vince Cable will leave the cabinet, replaced as Business Secretary by David Laws.
8) Unemployment will decrease in at least one quarter as the private sector grows.
9) The FTSE will climb above 6,500.
10) Strikes in London will help Ken Livingstone take the lead over Boris in the polls.
11) Sarah Palin, Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty will all confirm they’re running for president.

and 11 sporting predictions:

1) England will win the final Ashes test, taking the series 3-1.
2) Paul Collingwood will quit Test cricket.
3) England will win the Cricket World Cup.
4) Roy Hodgson will be sacked as Liverpool manager, replaced by Frank Rijkaard.
5) Fernando Torres will leave Liverpool.
6) Manchester City will win the Premier League.
7) Andy Murray will win a Grand Slam – probably the US Open.
8) Rory McIlroy will win a major – probably the Open.
9) Ronnie O’Sullivan will announce his retirement.
10) New Zealand will win the Rugby World Cup.
11) David Haye will beat both the Klitschko brothers before retiring.

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