The race for the top four has now turned into the race for the top five with the news that Manchester City’s place in the Champions League for next season seems to have disappeared. That also now means we could see eighth place in the Premier League receive a ticket to the Europa League, opening the door for all sorts of fascinating scenarios to unfold between now and the end of the season.
While we saw a lot of good action in the top flight on Saturday, with Chelsea overcoming Tottenham and Manchester City edging their way past Leicester City, the big test came on Sunday when three teams believed to be in the Champions League hunt – Manchester United, Arsenal and Wolverhampton Wanderers, all played at home with the eyes of English football on them to see whether or not they could ‘handle the pressure’ so to speak.
Wolves and Man United both kicked off at 2pm, and both kind of proved why they’re starting to make waves in the discussion for Champions League spots. Wolves were able to dispatch of Norwich City with relative ease, securing a 3-0 win without really having to get out of first gear – and that’s saying something when you consider the scoreline.
United, on the other hand, did pretty much the same thing against Watford in a fixture that they really struggled with just a matter of weeks ago. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men won 3-0 and kept themselves well and truly in the hunt for 5th or potentially even 4th, which came off the back of another big win against Chelsea last week.
Arsenal were forced to work a little bit harder for their 3-2 win against Everton, especially after going behind in less than a minute. The Toffees came to fight at the Emirates and while Arsenal got the three points in the end, they were made to scratch and claw every step of the way.
Sheffield United were also in action against Brighton & Hove Albion, and in a game that probably should’ve been a home run for them, they proved that everyone has their off days as they just couldn’t break the Seagulls down in their 1-1 draw. With Wolves having to play them next weekend at Molineux, it’s a clear sign that teams down in the relegation battle are going to be doing everything in their power to make some waves between now and the end of the campaign.
In terms of who is going to end up in the Champions League spots, we think it’s probably going to be Liverpool, Leicester, Chelsea and Tottenham. As much as people don’t like Jose Mourinho the guy knows how to get teams into good positions and edge out results, and in the end, we believe he will guide this Spurs team towards salvation.
Then you’ve got Arsenal, Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers all competing in the Europa League with the winner of the competition gaining entry to the UCL. In that instance, we think the Gunners will finally lift the trophy.