There are now just three weeks of the 2015/16 Premier League season remaining, and we take a look at the upcoming matches this weekend.
With European football dominating the midweek on-pitch action – matters off the pitch have been far more important – focus now turns back to England’s top flight.
Liverpool visit Swansea City on Sunday lunchtime, but with the game sandwiched in between the Reds’ Europa League semi-final clashes with Villarreal, it is far from their most important game of the campaign.
Jurgen Klopp is sure to rest many key players ahead of next Thursday’s must-win second leg at Anfield, with youngsters given a chance to shine in Wales.
Although Liverpool don’t have too much to play for in the league now, that is not the case for a number of other teams.
Leicester on the Brink
The Foxes won 4-0 at home to Swansea in their last outing, and Tottenham Hotspur’s 1-1 draw with West Bromwich Albion means Claudio Ranieri’s men are seven points clear with three games left to play.
They make the trip to Old Trafford on Sunday afternoon, and winning the title at the home of Man United would be a fitting way to seal glory.
Leicester have simply never slowed up, even when the pressure has increased, and it is surely now a case of when they win the league, rather than if.
Spurs have given their own title challenge their best shot, staying in the hunt throughout, but they look set to come up short.
They visit Chelsea on Monday night, and will be desperate for United to have done them a favour a day earlier, in order for their very slim title chances to still be alive.
Arsenal, who many feel have blown their best chance of winning the league in a decade, host struggling Norwich City, with Alex Neil’s side in the relegation zone by virtue of goal difference.
It is Sunderland who are just outside the bottom three as things stand, but they have Norwich and Newcastle United hot on their heels.
The Black Cats travel to take on a Stoke City side with absolutely nothing to play for, with their dire recent results sure to give Sam Allardyce plenty of confidence ahead of the match.
Newcastle battled back from 2-0 down to earn a draw at Anfield last weekend, with Rafa Benitez’s fighting qualities coming to the fore.
The remaining games of the weekend all feel very end-of-season.
The Hammers do have a top-six finish to aim for, however, which would ensure a Europa League spot next season, ahead of their move to the Olympic Stadium.
Full Fixtures & TV Info
Newcastle vs. Crystal Palace – Saturday 3pm
Stoke vs. Sunderland – Saturday 3pm
Waford vs. Aston Villa – Saturday 3pm
Arsenal vs. Norwich – Saturday 5:30pm, Sky Sports 1
Swansea vs. Liverpool – Sunday 12pm, BT Sport 1
Man United vs. Leicester – Sunday 2:05pm, Sky Sports 1
Fantasy Football Tips
Aston Villa’s relegation to the Championship was seemingly done and dusted around Christmas time, and they are making a strong case for being the worst Premier League team in history.
The Midlands club visit Watford this weekend, and the Hornets will fancy themselves to win handsomely against Villa. Selecting striker Troy Deeney in your fantasy football team would be a shrewd move.
Both United and Leicester have generally been very impressive defensively this season, and Sunday’s showdown at Old Trafford could easily end in a stalemate.
It will be a game that is dominated by the two defences, so including left-back Marcos Rojo in your team makes sense. He is far from the best full-back around, but he will be a relatively cheap addition.
Fabio Borini was never quite good enough to make the grade at Liverpool, but he has found his level at Sunderland, and is performing well.
The Italian has always had a knack for scoring big goals rather than lots of them, and he could well be the Black Cats’ saviour away to Stoke on Saturday.
There are many who feel Spurs will slip up away to Chelsea, but they are a far superior team at present, and should have enough to win in west London.
With Dele Alli suspended, Heung-Min Son should come into the team at Stamford Bridge. He is cheaper than the likes of Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen, and could play a key role.