Adam Parsons, Sky News correspondent
And so that’s it for the Premier League.
It’s been like a marathon where two magnificent runners went off into the distance and left the rest of the field behind them.
Liverpool and Manchester City have both been wonderful these past nine months – often entertaining, always focused upon the job.
They have been coached with aplomb, with good players becoming better, and they have also found space for English players to shine – Raheem Sterling has glittered for City with Phil Foden growing all the time; Trent Alexander-Arnold is a diamond at Anfield.
The rest of the teams aren’t as good.
Tottenham have performed an astounding feat by reaching the Champions League final despite being well over 27 points behind the top of their own domestic league.
Grit got them over the line on that crazy night in Amsterdam, but that 27-point margin is enormous.
I’ve seen magnificent players – Virgil van Dijk at Liverpool enjoyed probably the most commanding season seen by a Premier League central defender since Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic were at their height.
Son Heung-min at Tottenham was an elegant delight.
Sergio Aguero, Roberto Firmino, Mo Salah, Sadio Mane, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard – the Premier League is littered with potent attackers.
And yet there is something that we’ve lost.
I’ve been reading Graham Taylor’s autobiography, In His Own Words, and it takes you back to another era, when teams were able to rise through the ranks on the back of unexpected tactics, surprising their opponents, showcasing unknown players.
Those days have gone now.
Even allowing for the extraordinary, and still joyous, league title seized by Leicester City, the Premier League has ossified around a ruling elite.
Next season’s title will be won by a team that finished in the top six this time around.
In fact, it will very likely be won by one of this season’s top two.
And, quite probably, the top six this year will finish in the top six positions next year, too.
Why? Well, almost entirely it’s determined by having lots of money.
These six teams (Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham) all have deep pockets thanks to a blend of global profiles, fabulously rich owners, big stadiums, massive sponsorship deals and, of course, reward money from league and cup.
A Premier League title chase for the ages and Manchester City were the right champions
If Man City’s recruitment follows its usual pattern in the summer it will be limited, targeted and avoid the silly-money scramble.
About 89% of the profits made in the Premier League are made by the big six.
They enjoy far bigger revenues than any other clubs, and that gap is widening.
What’s more, it’s probably about to widen further.
Why? Well because revenue from domestic television rights seems to have stagnated, but income from global rights is very likely to go up sharply.
And it seems likely that the Premier League will start to distribute those global rights partly on the basis of a team’s finishing position.
In other words, more of the money will go to clubs who are already the wealthiest.
The ones who presently dominate the Premier League.
But there is something more than just filthy lucre – people.
Manchester City and Liverpool both have clever, charismatic and inspirational coaches who are the envy of every club team in the world.
And both teams also have a vision of how the game should be played, which players they should recruit, which traits they should seek in young footballers.
In a sport that talks relentlessly about tactics, these two clubs have the rare ability to think about long-term strategies.
Compare that with Manchester United, a team where strategic thinking has been stunningly absent.
Since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, three managers have come and gone, each allowed to pursue their own vision, each allowed to lumber the next incumbent with players they might not want.
Now a fourth successor is struggling to define what he stands for.
That’s a profound difference – if Jurgen Klopp were to leave Liverpool or Pep Guardiola depart Manchester City, then the next manager would be recruited entirely on the basis that he (or she) would follow a similar style of play.
At Old Trafford, they’ve been zig-zagging like a drunk after a Christmas party.
Ole Gunnar Solksjaer has a huge challenge ahead of him – the sort of rebuilding job that faced RBS after the financial crisis.
The trick there was to rethink the value of everything and reinvent the bank for a new world.
Solskjaer will have to do the same.
So if money rules football, and determines its finishing order, you might wonder why the rest of us bother.
What’s the point in supporting a team that has no chance of reaching the pinnacle? Why climb a mountain if you won’t get to the top?
And the answer is, of course, the same reason mountaineers do their thing.
Because it’s there.
Because Leicester won the title, and because small teams do (although not very often) beat big ones.
It is the naive hope that sustains you.
Watford will play Manchester City in the FA Cup final on Saturday.
None of Watford’s players would get in the City team; all of City’s substitutes would be a star player at Vicarage Road.
It will probably be one-sided, almost processional.
But what if it isn’t? What if the stars are aligned? That’s what keeps you going.
That’s why English football, for all its gaudy largesse, its absurd wealth and growing predictability, is still touched by stardust.
Once in a while, remarkable things happen – as they did in Amsterdam and at Anfield.
And, in a turbulent world, isn’t that what we all need – a chance, a hope, to witness magic?