Liverpool’s record-breaking Premier League campaign has left hopes of a title race in the gutter, but there’s a fascinating battle developing in behind as the race for the top four hots up.
Champions League football, of course, is the prize up for grabs. It’s a carrot that is becoming increasingly important for clubs in terms of their financial goals and ability to attract the best players from around the world. It’s the most lucrative chase in football.
- Watford vs Leicester – March
The top two, Liverpool and Manchester City, looked nailed on to finish there, so that leaves seven teams jostling for position in behind with just six points separating Chelsea in fourth and Wolves in ninth.
Leicester City and Chelsea are odds-on to join Liverpool and City, but it’s been a season of strange results so there is still big hope for Manchester United, Tottenham, Sheffield United, Wolves and Everton to stage a late-season rally.
- Top four teams in the PL qualify for CL group stage.
Fifth-p laced team and FA Cup winners qualify for EL group stage; Carabao Cup winners qualify for second qualifying round.
- If FA Cup winners finish in PL top five, their EL group stage place goes to next-highest ranked team not yet qualified.
If the EFL Cup winners finish in PL top five, the top five (or top six if FA Cup winners in top five), EL second qualifying round place goes to the next-highest ranked team not yet qualified.
3. Leicester City ( Leicester City) points from games Sky Bet odds to make top four: (1 /)
It’s Leicester’s to throw away, that’s for sure. It’s easy to forget that we’re dealing with a surprise package here – not many saw this coming.
Brendan Rodgers’ team took charge of this race with a sensational mid-season surge of wins that has given them a – point cushion between themselves and Sheffield United in fifth place. They also have a game in hand and have already faced Liverpool twice this season. However, is the pressure of expectation affecting the Foxes? Despite their front-foot performance levels still catching the eye, they have lost four of their last nine Premier League games. The goals have dried up for Jamie Vardy, too. The Premier League’s top goalscorer with 20 goals hasn’t found the net in his last five matches and has only registered four shots on target during that period, which is down on his usual average.
- Charlie’s Premier League predictions
But four points from their last two matches including a 2-2 draw with Chelsea will have given Leicester, who have no European football to distract them in the run-in, belief of seeing the job through.
- Wolves vs Leicester – February Leicester vs Manchester City – February
- Norwich vs Leicester – February Leicester vs Aston Villa – March 9
4 4. Chelsea ( points from gamesSky Bet odds to make top four: 1/2