Almost every team in the top half of the Premier League table has something to play for this weekend, with only nine points separating third-place Chelsea from ninth-place Arsenal.
Enjoy a closer look at some of the best English football on offer this week as teams fight for their last chance to collect three points and make it into some of Europe’s greatest club competitions.
PREMIER LEAGUE: CHAMPIONS
Mission accomplished for Pep Guardiola.
By winning their third Premier League trophy in just four years, Pep’s Manchester City has established itself as a team at the pinnacle of English football. Despite collecting fewer points than their other three winning seasons, the Citizens head into their last fixture of the year with 12 more points than their neighbours and closest table rivals, Manchester United.
PREMIER LEAGUE: CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
Close but no cigar for Ole’s Manchester United.
Four wins away from their noisy neighbours, Manchester United head into the last game of the season enjoying a secured second-place finish with 71 points on the board.
While it must be said that the Red Devils continue to improve on their league position year after year, the Manchester United faithful will still be hurt by another Premier League title handed over to their biggest rivals.
Demands on the biggest club in the world always include trophies. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have his biggest chance of attaining silverware for his club on 26 May when Manchester United take on Villarreal in the Europa League Final.
What a turnaround it has been for Chelsea.
It only took the firing of club-legend Frank Lampard for the Blues to flip the season on its head with their new German manager Thomas Tuchel.
While fragments of his shine may have faded after a 1-0 loss to Leicester City in the 2021 FA Cup final, Chelsea were able to take all three points from the Foxes just a few days ago and steal their third-place spot ahead of the Premier League’s final round.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that even though he has performed footballing miracles and gotten his side into two finals and the top four spots, Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea career may be defined over his next two games. A loss away against Aston Villa this Sunday could leave the Blues without Champions League football ahead of a tricky Champions League final against Manchester City.
Chelsea are valued at 1/2 (1.50) to beat the Lions at Villa Park this weekend.
All in all, it was a disappointing title defence for the ex-champions.
A season that only saw five appearances from Virgil van Dijk has increased his value exponentially. Without the commanding presence of the Dutch centre-back, Liverpool were unable to mount a proper title defence, often succumbing to costly errors which forced hurried personnel changes to cover up the holes in the defence.
For a time, the ex-champions looked like they would fall out of the race for Champions League spots, however, the Reds are the form team in the league. Unbeaten in nine games (seven victories, two draws) they have pushed themselves back up the table and into fourth-place ahead of the final round.
At 4/25 (1.16) to win this Sunday, Liverpool welcome Roy Hodgson to Anfield for his last game in charge of Crystal Palace.
PREMIER LEAGUE: EUROPA LEAGUE
Leicester City can be proud of what they have achieved this season.
Their FA Cup 1-0 victory against Chelsea a few days ago will go a long way in their progress to break into the “Big-Six”. With a trophy behind them, Leicester City look like a team likely to be fighting at the top end of the Premier League table, capable of challenging for England’s biggest prizes.
Unfortunately for Brendan Rodgers, his Foxes have had their league momentum drained, winning only one out of their last four matches. This drop in form has allowed their rivals to overtake them, dropping Leicester City out of the Champions League places and into fifth-place.
Come this Sunday, if results go their way, Leicester City will have the chance to secure elite European football. The Foxes at 51/50 (2.02) to win, play against Tottenham – who are themselves battling to make it into the Europa League via sixth place.
WEST HAM UNITED
It’s been a great year for West Ham United!
At the start of the season, few would have predicted West Ham United being in the thick of it when it mattered, defending a Europa League spot from both Tottenham and Everton.
A fantastic midweek 3-1 victory against West Bromwich Albion helped increase their points tally to a total of 62, meaning that a minimum of a draw this Sunday will be enough for the Hammers to secure a sixth-place position finish.
David Moyes and his rampaging Irons line up at 5/7 (1.72) to win against Southampton this weekend.
PREMIER LEAGUE: RELEGATION
There’s almost no point scrolling through the teams at the bottom of the Premier League table.
Fulham, West Bromwich Albion and Sheffield United have all long accepted that their relegation fight is well over and they will be playing in the Championship next season.
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*Odds subject to change. Odds correct at time of publishing.