Blackburn had a decidedly iffy start to the season, winning just four of their first 14 league games, a run which also included a staggering eight draws and just two defeats. However, they soon had little time to savour their Worthington Cup glory that resulted from a 2–1 win over Tottenham Hotspur on 24 February - they were deep in the relegation mire and occupying third place from bottom following a dreadful winter period, as they won two and lost ten in 12 games, the two wins seeing them do a decidedly one-sided double over Charlton Athletic (2-0 away and 4-1 home). But Graeme Souness inspired his side, bolstered by the arrival of striker Andy Cole, to a considerable turnaround in form - seeing them win six in their final 12 games - which saw them climb to 10th place in the final table. UEFA Cup qualification had already been achieved thanks to the Worthington Cup triumph, but the club's fans were left wondering whether it could have been achieved automatically had it not been for the club's dismal winter period. Especially, their league record produced four more defeats than wins in contrast to a final goal difference of +4, concluding them as a comprehensively winning team despite their inconsistency.
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) goal difference; 3) number of goals scored (C) = Champion; (R) = Relegated; (P) = Promoted; (E) = Eliminated; (O) = Play-off winner; (A) = Advances to a further round.
Only applicable when the season is not finished: (Q) = Qualified to the phase of tournament indicated; (TQ) = Qualified to tournament, but not yet to the particular phase indicated; (RQ) = Qualified to the relegation tournament indicated; (DQ) = Disqualified from tournament.
Pld = Matches played; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; F = Goals for; A = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points
1Since Arsenal qualified for the Champions League, their UEFA Cup place as FA Cup winners defaulted to Chelsea, the losing finalists.
2Blackburn Rovers qualified for the UEFA Cup as League Cup winners
3Despite relegation, Ipswich Town qualified for the 2002–03 UEFA Cup Qualifying Round as Fair Play Award winners