Premier League - Title (and Top 4) Race

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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With 8 matches left (9 for Chelsea) for the Premier League teams, we've got a very tight race for the title as well as between teams 3-6 for the top 4. Couple that with all 6 teams still in the hunt for either the Champions League or Europa League, which provides another way to gain a Champions League spot for next season. Man City and Man United are the only two of the six still in the hunt for the FA Cup.

Man City and Liverpool are currently separated by a point in the standings. Man City has a 7 goal lead in differential, should it come down to that.

Liverpool remaining schedule: @Fulham, Spurs, @Southampton, Chelsea, @Cardiff City, Huddersfield, @Newcastle, Wolves with leg 2 in Munich against Bayern this Wednesday.
Man City remaining schedule: @Fulham, Cardiff City, @Crystal Palace, Spurs, @Man United, @Burnley, Leicester City and Brighton. They are currently up 3-2 against Schalke, whom they host tomorrow.

Spurs, Arsenal, Man United and Chelsea are separated by 4 points total, but Chelsea who is in 6th has a game in hand and could easily be tied for 4th.

Spurs schedule: Crystal Place, @Liverpool, Brighton, Huddersfield, @Man City, West Ham, @Bournemouth and Everton.
Arsenal schedule: @wolves, Newcastle, @Everton, @Watford, Crystal Palace, @Leicester City, Brighton and @Burnley with leg 2 of their Europa league game Thursday currently down 3-1 aggregate.
ManU Schedule: Watford, @wolves, West Ham, @Everton, Man City, Chelsea, Huddersfield, Cardiff City
Chelsea schedule: Brighton, @Everton, @Cardiff City, West Ham, @Liverpool, Burnley, @ManU, Watford and @Leicester City with leg 2 against Dynamo Kyiv on Thursday though they're up 3-0.

Certainly the advantage in schedule is to Arsenal, who has no remaining matches against other top 6 clubs and may be down to focusing on the Premier League unless they can finish 2-0 or better on Thursday in the Europa league. Spurs are in the toughest spot needing to play both at Liverpool and at Manchester City. Manchester United has the most on their plate with both the Champions League and FA cup still on the line.

It'd be quite a sight to see Spurs or Man United win the Champions League and Arsenal or Chelsea winning the Europa with both teams finishing 5th and 6th to end up with all six in the CL next season.

Even the Golden Boot race is going to be a tight finish between Aguero (18), Salah (17), Aubemayang (17), Kane (17) and Mane (16).
 

Zososoxfan

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Beat me to it (check the Spurs thread). While I'm terribly panicked as a Spurs fan about a top 4 spot, I feel better looking at the United schedule. That is almost worse as they have fewer matches remaining against bottom clubs.
 

SoxFanInCali

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It'd be quite a sight to see Spurs or Man United win the Champions League and Arsenal or Chelsea winning the Europa with both teams finishing 5th and 6th to end up with all six in the CL next season.
6 teams from a country can't make it, the maximum is 5. If the Champions League and Europa League winners came in 5th and 6th, whoever came in 4th would get bumped out.
 

mikeford

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6 teams from a country can't make it, the maximum is 5. If the Champions League and Europa League winners came in 5th and 6th, whoever came in 4th would get bumped out.
I thought they changed that rule after Sp*rs got dropped from CL because Chelsea won it?
 

nolasoxfan

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Beat me to it (check the Spurs thread). While I'm terribly panicked as a Spurs fan about a top 4 spot, I feel better looking at the United schedule. That is almost worse as they have fewer matches remaining against bottom clubs.
One way or another, Spurs will decide the EPL championship this year.
 

SoxFanInCali

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I thought they changed that rule after Sp*rs got dropped from CL because Chelsea won it?
Yeah, that's when they allowed a 5th team in if a non-qualifying team wins, so in that case, 4th place Spurs and Champions League Winners Chelsea would have both been let in. But now that the Europa League winners get a CL spot, too, they said that no country can send more than 5. The only case where a 4th place team can be dropped is if both the CL and EL winners are in the same league and neither finish top 4.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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6 teams from a country can't make it, the maximum is 5. If the Champions League and Europa League winners came in 5th and 6th, whoever came in 4th would get bumped out.
I thought they changed that rule after Sp*rs got dropped from CL because Chelsea won it?
SFiC has it right, but it is related to mikeford's comment. UEFA expanded it from a maximum of 4 to 5 teams (a year after Chelsea bumped Spurs out), but 5 is the max it appears.
 

BCsMightyJoeYoung

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Regarding the title race
- Citeh hav a one point lead + a probably insurmountable GD lead

- Citeh's two big Six games are Spurs (H) and ManU (A)
- Liverpool's two big Six games are Spurs (H) and Chelsea (H)
So - advantage 'Pool I would think with just the big 6 games.
Expected points
- Liverpool : 6
- Man City: 4 (go United!)

The rest -
Liverpool - @Fulham, @Southampton, @Cardiff, Huddersfield , @Newcastle, Wolves
City: @Fulham, Cardiff, @Palace, @Burnley, Leicester, @Brighton

Expected points
- Liverpool : 16
- Man City: 16

So - it should come down to whether City drops points at Old Trafford. Probably expect one other slip up from both sides in the run in. Liverpool have a slightly tougher schedule i think - the Newcastle game scares me on current form.
 

swiftaw

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If Newcastle are safe by then, Rafa won’t hinder Liverpool’s title chase :)
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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To make things more interesting, all 6 teams are continuing in their respective European cup, though we're guaranteed to lose at least one this next round.

It's going to be a brutal season finish for one or two of Arsenal, Spurs, ManU and Chelsea that loses their cup and also misses out on the top 4. None of the top 6 teams face each other this weekend, but both Manchester teams have FA Cup matches and Arsenal is off due to the Wolves playing in the FA cup.
 

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Quick bump:

3. Spurs (64) - Huddersfield (20), @City (1), BHA (15), WHU (11)
4. Arse (63, match in hand) - @Everton (10), @Watford (8), CP (13), @wolves (7), @LCFC (9)
5. Chelsea (63) - WHU (11), @Liverpool (2), Burnley (17), @United (6)
6. United (61) - WHU (11), @Everton (10), City (1), Chelsea (5)

Spurs schedule is my favorite personally. Likely takes 72 points to finish top 4.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Quick bump:

3. Spurs (64) - Huddersfield (20), @City (1), BHA (15), WHU (11)
4. Arse (63, match in hand) - @Everton (10), @Watford (8), CP (13), @wolves (7), @LCFC (9)
5. Chelsea (63) - WHU (11), @Liverpool (2), Burnley (17), @United (6)
6. United (61) - WHU (11), @Everton (10), City (1), Chelsea (5)

Spurs schedule is my favorite personally. Likely takes 72 points to finish top 4.
I think you're missing two games for each team.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Just the EPL fixtures obviously. Arse and Chelsea are presumably at a relative disadvantage since their matches will be on Thursdays.
Even so, there's 38 games in a season and most teams have played 32.

I have the following as the schedule for teams 3-6:

Spurs schedule: Huddersfield(20), @Man City(1), Brighton(15), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(12) and Everton(10). Plus 2 legs against Man City in the CL.
Arsenal schedule: @Everton(10), @Watford(8), Crystal Palace(13), @Wolverhampton(7), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(15) and @Burnley(17). Plus 2 legs against Napoli in the Europa league.
ManU Schedule: West Ham(11), @Everton(10), Man City(1), Chelsea(5), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18). Plus 2 legs against Barca in the CL.
Chelsea schedule: West Ham(11), @Liverpool(2), Burnley(17), @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Plus 2 legs vs Slavia Praha in the Europa.

I'd say that Chelsea clearly has the toughest schedule left with matches at Liverpool and at ManU, and outside the game vs Burnley have all top 11 teams. Arsenal has no top 6 matches, and two bottom 5 though many games away. Chelsea probably in the worst spot, but ManU isn't in great position either back 2 points stuck playing City and Chelsea.

Golden Boot still tight as well
1. Aguero 19
2. Kane, Salah, Aubameyang, Mane 17
 

Zososoxfan

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Even so, there's 38 games in a season and most teams have played 32.

I have the following as the schedule for teams 3-6:

Spurs schedule: Huddersfield(20), @Man City(1), Brighton(15), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(12) and Everton(10). Plus 2 legs against Man City in the CL.
Arsenal schedule: @Everton(10), @Watford(8), Crystal Palace(13), @Wolverhampton(7), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(15) and @Burnley(17). Plus 2 legs against Napoli in the Europa league.
ManU Schedule: West Ham(11), @Everton(10), Man City(1), Chelsea(5), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18). Plus 2 legs against Barca in the CL.
Chelsea schedule: West Ham(11), @Liverpool(2), Burnley(17), @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Plus 2 legs vs Slavia Praha in the Europa.

I'd say that Chelsea clearly has the toughest schedule left with matches at Liverpool and at ManU, and outside the game vs Burnley have all top 11 teams. Arsenal has no top 6 matches, and two bottom 5 though many games away. Chelsea probably in the worst spot, but ManU isn't in great position either back 2 points stuck playing City and Chelsea.

Golden Boot still tight as well
1. Aguero 19
2. Kane, Salah, Aubameyang, Mane 17
You're right, I suck.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Amazing that all 6 of the top Premier league teams are still playing in Europe. It's a real question whether one of them can win while finishing the in 5th or 6th spot to send an extra team to the Champions League next year.

5 games left for Chelsea, 6 games each for the rest of the 3-6 group.

3. Chelsea - 66
4. Spurs - 64
5. Arsenal - 63
6. ManU - 61

Spurs schedule: Huddersfield(20), @Man City(1), Brighton(15), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(12) and Everton(10). Plus 2 legs against Man City in the CL.
Arsenal schedule: @Watford(8), Crystal Palace(13), @Wolverhampton(7), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(15) and @Burnley(17). Plus 2 legs against Napoli in the Europa league.
ManU Schedule: West Ham(11), @Everton(10), Man City(1), Chelsea(5), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18). Plus 2 legs against Barca in the CL.
Chelsea schedule: @Liverpool(2), Burnley(17), @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Plus 2 legs vs Slavia Praha in the Europa.

Race stays tight for the top 2 as well though Man City has a game in hand:

1. Liverpool - 82
2. City - 80

Liverpool remaining schedule: Chelsea, @Cardiff City, Huddersfield, @Newcastle, Wolves plus 2 legs vs Porto in the Champions League.
Man City remaining schedule: @Crystal Palace, Spurs, @Man United, @Burnley, Leicester City and Brighton. Taking on the Spurs in the CL.
 

coremiller

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Amazing that all 6 of the top Premier league teams are still playing in Europe. It's a real question whether one of them can win while finishing the in 5th or 6th spot to send an extra team to the Champions League next year.

5 games left for Chelsea, 6 games each for the rest of the 3-6 group.

3. Chelsea - 66
4. Spurs - 64
5. Arsenal - 63
6. ManU - 61

Spurs schedule: Huddersfield(20), @Man City(1), Brighton(15), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(12) and Everton(10). Plus 2 legs against Man City in the CL.
Arsenal schedule: @Watford(8), Crystal Palace(13), @Wolverhampton(7), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(15) and @Burnley(17). Plus 2 legs against Napoli in the Europa league.
ManU Schedule: West Ham(11), @Everton(10), Man City(1), Chelsea(5), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18). Plus 2 legs against Barca in the CL.
Chelsea schedule: @Liverpool(2), Burnley(17), @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Plus 2 legs vs Slavia Praha in the Europa.

Race stays tight for the top 2 as well though Man City has a game in hand:

1. Liverpool - 82
2. City - 80

Liverpool remaining schedule: Chelsea, @Cardiff City, Huddersfield, @Newcastle, Wolves plus 2 legs vs Porto in the Champions League.
Man City remaining schedule: @Crystal Palace, Spurs, @Man United, @Burnley, Leicester City and Brighton. Taking on the Spurs in the CL.
There also some long-shot scenarios where Spurs or Man Utd win the Champions League while finishing 5th/6th, Chelsea or Arsenal win the Europa League while finishing 5th/6th, and the 4th place team gets bumped.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Another week down and no real separation. Arsenal squeaks by with a victory in a dreaded(for them) away match. Two major injuries for Spurs who have to play City twice this week (Wednesday at the Etihad up 1-0 in aggregate and again Saturday at the Etihad). They'll have a relatively easy premier league schedule the rest of the way once they're past City.

4 games left for Chelsea, 5 games each for the rest of the 3-6 group.

3. Spurs - 67
4. Arsenal - 66
5. Chelsea - 66
6. ManU - 64

Spurs schedule: @Man City(1), Brighton(15), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(12) and Everton(10). Plus 1 leg against Man City in the CL.
Arsenal schedule: Crystal Palace(13), @Wolverhampton(7), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(15) and @Burnley(17). Plus 1 leg against Napoli in the Europa league.
ManU Schedule: @Everton(10), Man City(1), Chelsea(5), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18). Plus 1 leg against Barca in the CL.
Chelsea schedule: Burnley(17), @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Plus 1 leg vs Slavia Praha in the Europa.

Race stays tight for the top 2 as well though Man City has a game in hand:

1. Liverpool - 85
2. City - 83

Liverpool remaining schedule: @Cardiff City, Huddersfield, @Newcastle, Wolves plus 1 leg vs Porto in the Champions League.
Man City remaining schedule: Spurs, @Man United, @Burnley, Leicester City and Brighton. Taking on the Spurs in the CL.

Even the Golden Boot remains tight:
1. Salah, Aguero 19
3. Aubameyang, Mane 18
5. Kane, Sterling 17
 

coremiller

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Funny that Man Utd will play the biggest role in determining whether City or Liverpool win the title. Which of their rivals do they hate less?
 

BCsMightyJoeYoung

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Funny that Man Utd will play the biggest role in determining whether City or Liverpool win the title. Which of their rivals do they hate less?
I think City would be the easy answer to that .. City are merely annoying .. the noisy neighbours .. whereas Liverpool .. the hated long term rival.

That being said, Manu U has top 4 to play for so I don’t think there will be any let up.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Another EPL weekend down. Liverpool and City win again while Chelsea, Arsenal, Spurs and Manchester United gain a single point between the four of them. The two teams from Manchester were eliminated from Europe, which will give them a minor reprieve battling for their spots. Looking at the schedules, Spurs and Arsenal are certainly in the best positions. A costly win for City as De Bruyne appears to have suffered another major injury, has already been ruled out for tomorrow's derby, and may be out for the rest of the season.

3 games left for Chelsea, 4 games each for the rest of the 3-6 group.

3. Spurs - 67 - 93%
4. Chelsea- 67 - 31%
5. Arsenal - 66 - 66%
6. ManU - 64 - 10%

Spurs schedule: Brighton(17), West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(14) and Everton(7). Playing Ajax in the CL Semi Finals
Arsenal schedule: @Wolverhampton(10), @Leicester City(9), Brighton(17) and @Burnley(15). Facing Valencia in the Europa Semi Finals
ManU Schedule: Man City(2), Chelsea(4), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18).
Chelsea schedule: @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Playing Frankfurt in the Europa Semi Finals.

Race stays tight for the top 2 as well though Man City has a game in hand:

1. Liverpool - 88 - 56%
2. City - 86 - 44%

Liverpool remaining schedule: Huddersfield(20), @Newcastle(13), Wolves(10). Playing Barca in the CL Semi Finals.
Man City remaining schedule: @Man United(6), @Burnley(15), Leicester City(9) and Brighton(17). Playing Watford in the FA Cup Final on 5/18.

Golden Boot remains tight:
1. Salah, Aguero, Aubameyang 19
3. Mane 18
5. Kane, Sterling 17
 

Zososoxfan

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I'm slightly annoyed that the top 6 haven't had the same number of matches played in quite some time. It's not an actual complaint, but things would be a bit more fun if they were in lockstep.

Interesting how many matches remain against that "3rd tier" of EPL sides - Everton, Watford, LCFC, Wolves, and West Ham. Everton in particular have been playing excellent football these past 2 months. Everton drew Liverpool and has beaten Chelsea, WHU, Arsenal, and Man U. Of course, they also lost to Fulham but they'd be in the hunt for Europe spots if they were any better or more consistent. I still think it will take 74 points to qualify for Europe.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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I'm slightly annoyed that the top 6 haven't had the same number of matches played in quite some time. It's not an actual complaint, but things would be a bit more fun if they were in lockstep.
Should be fixed after today as City, United, Spurs and Arsenal all have mid week games, so everyone will be at 3 to go.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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IIRC, it gets spread out again until Week 38.
I mean, games are spread out of the course of the weekend, but up until today they've been off by 1-2 even after a weekend finishes because of FA cup matches interfering. That'll at least be done and after a weekend's set of matches everyone will have the same number of Games Played, and then Week 38 every team plays at once.

https://www.premierleague.com/fixtures
 

coremiller

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I mean, games are spread out of the course of the weekend, but up until today they've been off by 1-2 even after a weekend finishes because of FA cup matches interfering. That'll at least be done and after a weekend's set of matches everyone will have the same number of Games Played, and then Week 38 every team plays at once.

https://www.premierleague.com/fixtures
This weekend:

Friday: Liverpool
Saturday: Spurs
Sunday: Arsenal, City, Utd, Chelsea

Next weekend:

Saturday: Spurs, Liverpool
Sunday: Chelsea, Utd, Arsenal
Monday: City

The final weekend, of course, everyone plays at the same time on Sunday.

If anything, I think Liverpool may have a slight psychological advantage getting to play before City each week, but it probably doesn't matter.
 
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teddykgb

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One bizarre footnote to that is that the PL shifted the City v Leicester to Monday at the last minute much to the annoyance of both sets of fans. One thing that is absolutely nuts to me about this league is the willingness to burn their ticket holders. Match dates and times need to shift at times due to cup matches but a fan of these teams who tries to legitimately attend home and away has to deal with a lot of bullshit regarding travel. Add in the mess with VAR and how they aren’t really showing what the refs see on screen and how goals aren’t capable of being celebrated until the VAR check is complete and they’re practically begging people to stay home and watch on TV
 

DrewDawg

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Meanwhile the Eredivisie rescheduled an entire weekend of games (EVERY team) to give Ajax rest for the CL semis.

Mauricio Pochettino has mentioned on more than one occasion this season how the Premier League doesn’t exactly bend over backwards to help out teams that are competing in European competitions. He’s on record as saying that he wishes they did a little more, since the grind of playing matches every 3 days or so is grueling, especially to teams that want to go deep into the competition.
 

coremiller

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One bizarre footnote to that is that the PL shifted the City v Leicester to Monday at the last minute much to the annoyance of both sets of fans. One thing that is absolutely nuts to me about this league is the willingness to burn their ticket holders. Match dates and times need to shift at times due to cup matches but a fan of these teams who tries to legitimately attend home and away has to deal with a lot of bullshit regarding travel. Add in the mess with VAR and how they aren’t really showing what the refs see on screen and how goals aren’t capable of being celebrated until the VAR check is complete and they’re practically begging people to stay home and watch on TV
Spurs were originally supposed to play that Monday, but the game had to be moved back to Saturday due to Spurs' CL semi. The TV contract requires there be a game in that Monday evening time slot, so somebody else had to switch on short notice to Monday.
 

DrewDawg

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Chelsea losing Hudson-Odoi for rest of season due to ruptured Achilles suffered Monday.
 

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Wolves are two up against Arsenal.

No score at Old Trafford but for cautions it's 2-1 to City. Scrappy, fairly bad tempered match so far. Man U are up for it. But they're not really hurting City and you feel City can and will score when they get some decent periods of possession.
 

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I'd like to see Pogba impose himself on the game a bit more. United had a couple of opportunities on the break to make something happen, but poor touches and decision making let them down. It's a pretty bad tempered match. I bet Ashley Young never thought he'd be Man U captain when he was playing for Villa. He probably has dreams where he isn't Man U captain. Crazy world.
 

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It’s still a long shot because they have to win today but amazingly Champions League is still in United’s hands.

Arsenal’s destruction today is great news for Liverpool fans.
 

teddykgb

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So sick of the injuries this season. It’s a problem for this match and if he’s out again it’s a problem for the remainder even if City find a way out of this
 

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I’m going out on a limb and saying that United can not get back in this game if Paul Pogba plays like complete dogshit.
 

Dernells Casket n Flagon

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Disasterous day for Arsenal. Live Table standings with every team in the top 6 having 3 games remaining:

3. Spurs - 70
4. Chelsea- 67
5. Arsenal - 66
6. ManU - 64

Spurs schedule: West Ham(11), @Bournemouth(14) and Everton(7). Playing Ajax in the CL Semi Finals
Arsenal schedule: @Leicester City(9), Brighton(17) and @Burnley(15). Facing Valencia in the Europa Semi Finals
ManU Schedule: Chelsea(4), Huddersfield(20), Cardiff City(18).
Chelsea schedule: @ManU(6), Watford(8) and @Leicester City(9). Playing Frankfurt in the Europa Semi Finals.

1. City - 89
2. Liverpool - 88

Liverpool remaining schedule: @Newcastle(13), Wolves(10). Playing Barca in the CL Semi Finals.
Man City remaining schedule: @Burnley(15), Leicester City(9) and Brighton(17). Playing Watford in the FA Cup Final on 5/18.
 

koufax32

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*sigh*
City aren't going to drop another point this season, are they?
Nope. This is what happens when you have to hope for a soulless squad to steal points for you.

1 loss on the whole season and it’s not enough to win the league.
La Liga-esque
 

fletcherpost

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I’d say it’s old friend Brendan. I’m not comfortable about that one.

We have now reached the hit it high and hope section of our program
I reckon City will win against Leicester. But Dyche can grind out a result...but, having said that his players might have their flip flops on already, now they're safe...so...I've just talked myself out of it.