After months of tension and surprising results, we’re finally into the last few days of the Premier League season – and, by default, the top four race. It’s been one hell of a journey up to this point and something tells us that between now and Monday morning, things are going to be getting even crazier.
You can put down money on what you think is going to happen by visiting our betting page but for the sake of this piece, we want to take a look at what all three clubs involved have achieved – and what’s left for them to push for.
Chelsea may have lost the FA Cup final but after beating Leicester last night, they know that their fate is in their own hands. Thomas Tuchel still has the Champions League final to think about but the uncertainty surrounding that means they need to double down on sealing qualification for next season’s competition. They’ll meet Aston Villa at Villa Park on Sunday in a game they know they should win but if they go long enough without scoring, they could easily slip into fifth – putting a whole load of pressure on the final in Porto.
The fact that Leicester City won their first ever FA Cup last weekend is enough to make this a successful season for them, but Brendan Rodgers knows how disappointed their fans will be if they slip out of the top four for the second straight year. Unfortunately for them it seems as if the situation is out of their hands now with Liverpool having a game to play during the week, so all Leicester can do is go in all guns blazing against Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday. From there, they’ve pretty much done everything they can.
Liverpool fans won’t need reminding of everything they’ve been through since the start of the season and they certainly won’t want anyone to waste time bringing up old injuries. Instead, they need to realise that Alisson’s winner against West Brom simply has to be taken advantage of. They’ll meet Burnley at Turf Moor tonight knowing that all they need to do is beat the Clarets and beat the Eagles to seal their place in next season’s Champions League – but we all know football is never quite as simple as that.
To put it as bluntly as we possibly can, we think Chelsea and Liverpool will qualify for the Champions League through their league position with Leicester City slipping into the Europa League for the second straight season. That’s because we’re backing Liverpool to beat Burnley and Crystal Palace, probably in a very dramatic way, with Chelsea just about getting past Aston Villa. Leicester, by default, wouldn’t be able to do anything that would substantially help their cause – and yet we still think they’ll only manage a draw against Spurs.
Whatever happens, though, all we’re hoping for is some entertaining drama to give neutral fans something to enjoy on the final day this weekend.