Race for the Champions League spots hots up
Picture taken from EPL TalkSeparated by 4 points, three of London's biggest clubs, head into the run-in aspiring to play in Europe's premier competition next season. As Arsenal, Chelsea and Spurs, gear up for that final push, we take a look at who...
|Picture taken from EPL Talk|
Separated by 4 points, three of London’s biggest clubs, head into the run-in for the top four spots, aspiring to play in Europe’s premier competition next season.
As Arsenal, Chelsea and Spurs, gear up for that final push, we take a look at who all they face from Wednesday night- to the middle of May- in the Barclays Premier League.
Man City H
West Brom A
Half of the games are on the road, while the rest are of course at the Grove. The average current league position of Arsenal’s upcoming opponents is 12.8.
Away trips to Everton and Stoke, might be the games that decide Arsenal’s fate, alongside the massive games against City and Chelsea in April. The run-in doesn’t look scary to be fair, but has sufficient potential for blips here and there.
The positive momentum derived from four consecutive comeback wins should help the Gunners in their quest.
Man City A
The average current league position of Chelsea’s upcoming opponents is 10.1. Five games are away from home, while five are in west London.
Easily the toughest run-in of the three, Chelsea would have a fair idea of their destiny by the weekend, after they face Manchester City and Spurs in a matter of 3 days, and anything less than 4 points from the two games might turn out to be irreparable.
Add to that their European commitments, and the Blues have an uphill task, to break into the top four. Having said that, Di Matteo’s men seem to have turned the corner with an odds-defying win over Napoli and then qualifying for the F.A.Cup semis after defeating Leicester City on Saturday.
Harry Redknapp’s team appear to have the easiest run-in. Their opponents have an average current league position of 12.6. With five away and five home games for the lily-whites, facing seven of the bottom 10 in the run-in, Spurs surely have the easiest looking fixture list, on paper at least.
Few would argue that, away games at relegation-threatened clubs could be extremely uncomfortable during the closing weeks of the season. Add to that their untimely dip in form, and the momentum suddenly feels completely against Spurs. Despite this, Tottenham should get a minimum of 21 points from their remaining fixtures.
VERDICT: It’s squeaky bum-time, and it’s a matter of who blinks first. Momentum becomes a huge factor at this stage of the season, and that is where I think Arsenal would have the edge.
It comes down to fine margins, and you wouldn’t bet against a RVP-led Arsenal to pip their rivals for third. Spurs have the easier fixtures, and that would be the deciding factor between them and the Blues.
The final positions at the end of the season, in my opinion:
Written by Debarshee Mitra
Follow him on Twitter @goonerstar_deb
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