The Premier League is approaching the final run-in and yet very little is actually settled at either end of the table.
There is yet to be clarity on who will win the title, who will finish fourth in the table, and who will avoid finishing 18th and dropping into the Championship.
For many teams, such as Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur, there is just one game of their season left, but there remain some sides in the league who have two to go, and that could make all the difference depending on where they currently sit in the league standings.
We’ve looked at the permutations going into the final week of fixtures, and we’ve also taken a look at which side in each scenario is likely to get what they want!
Have a look below.
WHICH PREMIER LEAGUE GAMES WILL BE ON TV?
This is a good question and there are a number of games that are going to be viewable on television in the run-in.
As it stands, the games that have currently been announced for TV are as follows.
- Brentford v Leeds United – Sunday May 22nd 2022 – 4:00pm kick-off – Sky Sports.
- Liverpool v Wolves – Sunday May 22nd 2022 – 4:00pm kick-off – Sky Sports.
- Manchester City v Aston Villa – Sunday May 22nd 2022 – 4:00pm kick-off – Sky Sports.
This makes sense, with the relegation battle and the title fight taking centre stage.
WHO WILL WIN THE TITLE?
This is going to the wire.
Pep Guardiola’s side now have 90 points going into the final game of the season and they are one clear of Liverpool, after Tuesday’s fixture against Southampton.
For Liverpool to win the title, they need to beat Wolves. They would also have to hope that Villa do them a favour by taking points off City on the final day. Liverpool winning on the final day and City drawing would mean the Reds end the season with 92 points, while City end with 91. These are razor-thin margins.
A draw for Liverpool will not be enough unless City lose 6-0 to Villa.
There is also the very unlikely scenario of the two sides being locked completely level on the final day. Premier League rules state that a 39th match will be used to determine the champions if two sides are level on points, goal difference, goals scored and in the head-to-head results between them.
This would require Liverpool to win 5-0 on the final day and see City lose 1-0. That would leave the two clubs locked completely level on points, goal difference, goals scored, and the head-to-head results.
That would mean a 90-minute fixture would be required to determine the Premier League champions. It’s not very likely but it is mouthwatering in prospect.
PREDICTION: Manchester City win the title. Per FiveThirtyEight’s detailed statistical model, City have an 82% chance of lifting the trophy, while Liverpool have an 18% chance. It would require a major slip from Pep’s men, but they do play Steven Gerrard’s side, and he’ll be desperate to win the title for his former club.
WHERE WILL THE TROPHY BE?
Per The Daily Telegraph, the real trophy is going to be at the Etihad Stadium, suggesting that the Premier League’s executives expect Manchester City to lift it after their encounter with Villa.
The Premier League’s chief executive, Richard Masters, will also be present when City face Villa.
However, a replica trophy and another presentation team will be at Anfield in case Liverpool manage to win the title.
As we’ve mentioned, to do that, they will need to beat Wolves and hope City lose to Villa.
WHO WILL QUALIFY FOR THE CHAMPIONS LEAGUE?
Spurs did their job on Sunday by beating Burnley 1-0, having beaten the Gunners in a high-stakes north London derby last week.
That saw Antonio Conte’s side leapfrog the Gunners into fourth place, two points ahead of Mikel Arteta’s team.
Arsenal were subsequently beaten 2-0 by Newcastle United on Monday evening and that result has essentially ended their hopes of a fourth-place finish.
Going into the game, Arsenal remained the masters of their own destiny and would have qualified for the Champions League if they had beaten both Newcastle and Everton, on the final day.
Arsenal’s failure to beat the Magpies, though, has handed the initiative to Spurs and all but confirmed that their north London rivals will qualify for the competition, as they only need to draw with bottom-placed side Norwich on the final day to do so, due to their superior goal difference.
Arsenal now need to beat Everton on the final day and hope that Spurs lose to Norwich, which is not an impossible scenario, but the Canaries have won just five times all season and have not picked up all three points since they beat Burnley 2-0 in April.
PREDICTION: Spurs qualify. FiveThirtyEight and their statistical model gives Tottenham a 96% chance of finishing fourth after Monday night’s result. They are unlikely to lose to Norwich, so Arsenal, who have a 4% chance, are set to be consigned to Europa League football once more.
WHO WILL BE RELEGATED?
Everton went into the final week of the season aware that they would need to win one of their games in hand to stay up, and did just that.
They came from 2-0 down to beat Crystal Palace 3-2 on Thursday, securing their own safety.
It means that their game against Arsenal on Sunday has nothing riding on it for the Toffees.
Burnley, by comparison, drew 1-1 with Aston Villa on Thursday and face Newcastle on the final day.
That result has seen the Clarets climb out of the relegation zone and into 17th place ahead of Sunday’s fixtures.
Put simply, if Burnley now win on the final day, they will stay up. They have a 20-goal advantage over Leeds in terms of goal difference, and it is next to impossible for that to become a factor this weekend.
Leeds’ destiny is out of their hands. They play Brentford on the final day, but a win may not be enough.
If they beat Brentford on the final day, they will move on to 38 points but they will need Brentford to drop points.
A Leeds win over Brentford, coupled with a Burnley defeat or draw against Newcastle, would relegate the Clarets. Leeds would also stay up if they drew and Burnley lost. Leeds cannot stay up if Burnley win.
Basically, Burnley are the masters of their own destiny and Leeds need help.
For Burnley to be safe: Burnley know that they just need to win on the final day. If they do that, they will be safe. Burnley may only need a draw, though, as they would stay up with a point if Leeds fail to beat Brentford. A defeat for Burnley would also keep them up as long as Leeds lost too.
For Leeds to be safe: Leeds are in trouble. They go into the game knowing that even a win may not be enough. The simplest way to put it is that Leeds must win and hope Burnley don’t. If Leeds win, and Burnley draw or lose, Leeds will stay up. If Leeds draw, and Burnley lose, Jesse Marsch’s side will stay up with a point. Both sides losing would relegate the Elland Road club.
PREDICTION: Leeds go down. They have a 76% chance of relegation, per FiveThirtyEight, while Burnley’s chance is down to 24%. Leeds would need help to stay up, and are reliant Burnley dropping points. Their goal difference is the killer.
WHO WILL QUALIFY FOR THE EUROPA LEAGUE?
This is technically still up for debate. Arsenal are guaranteed to finish fifth at least.
Manchester United are currently sixth but are not guaranteed to finish there; West Ham can still overtake them. A sixth-placed finish guarantees Europa League qualification, while a seventh-placed finish means qualification for the Europa Conference League.
The Hammers drew with Manchester City at the weekend.
They currently have 56 points, while United have 58. West Ham have a superior goal difference by a factor of 10 and that is unlikely to be eclipsed.
The Irons face Brighton away on the final day, while United play Crystal Palace.
If United win their final game, they will finish sixth. A draw for United would mean West Ham finish sixth with a victory. West Ham must win their final game to have any chance.
United losing leaves it the same, with West Ham needing to win.
Put simply: West Ham must win and hope United don’t.
Prediction: United finish sixth. United have a 79% chance of a sixth-placed finish, while West Ham’s chance is just 21%. With the talent in Ralf Rangnick’s squad, they should get over the line.
You can keep up to date with all of the latest Football News right here on GiveMeSport.