With less than 10 games to go in the Premier League season, it is time for nearly all 20 clubs, as there is still plenty to play for.
Manchester City may have pretty much nailed the title with a 14-point lead over neighbors United, but Champions League places are still there for the taking, with every team up to Aston Villa in 10th realistically still in the fray .
On the downside, Sheffield United and West Brom seem almost certainties to go down, but it looks like things are getting tight between Fulham, Newcastle and perhaps Brighton for whoever will join them.
As the season reaches a dramatic finale, Sportsmail runs through 10 games that you just can’t miss for the next six weeks.
Manchester City certainly looks set to win the Premier League title – their third in four years
Tottenham will meet Newcastle United back on the first weekend in a massive competition for both teams
ARSENAL VS LIVERPOOL (SATURDAY APRIL 3, 8:00 PM)
The first day back after the international break and late kick-off immediately put us back in the mood with two teams who have had miserable bouts of form this season, but Arsenal are actually only four points behind the Premier League champions in the table.
The Reds themselves need to be in consistent form if they want to bring in Chelsea fourth, which is currently five points free.
That starts on Saturday night in the Emirates – a corker of a clash to start the final.
Arsenal faces Liverpool on the first day the Premier League returns after the international break
OTHER GREAT MATCHES
West Ham vs Leicester (April 11)
Leeds vs Man Utd (April 24)
Fulham vs Burnley (May 8)
Man Utd v Leicester (May 11)
Arsenal v Chelsea (May 12)
NEWCASTLE VS TOTTENHAM (SUNDAY APRIL 4, 2:05 PM)
Are there two managers, Steve Bruce and Jose Mourinho, who are more at risk of losing their jobs in the coming weeks?
For the Magpies, they’ve been drawn into a relegation dogfight, and amid fights in camp, Bruce must send the team away from Fulham – two points down, but who’ve played one more game.
As for Spurs, after a disastrous exit from the Europa League, Mourinho now only has the league as a means of returning to the Champions League next season.
But despite all the talk of a crisis, Spurs are just three points behind Chelsea, who are in fourth place at the start of the weekend – a margin very attainable over the course of nine more games.
TOTTENHAM VS MANCHESTER UNITED (SUNDAY APRIL 11, 4:30 PM)
This game usually offers a lot of talking points – remember Roy Keane’s rest after last season’s lockdown?
It represents another pivotal match for Mourinho’s top four ambitions, against a former club of his that hasn’t quite taken a top four spot themselves.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are too far behind to recoup a deficit against City first – but they need to consolidate a spot in the Champions League amid a Europa League quarter-final against Granada on either side of this. duel.
One can only imagine Keane’s analysis of this if David De Gea or Harry Maguire make another mistake. Even worse, if it’s anything like the 6-1 at Old Trafford in October …
Tottenham beat Manchester United 6-1 in October, but things look very different now
WEST HAM VERSUS CHELSEA (APRIL 24)
Who could have guessed at the start of the season that this London derby could have such a decisive vote in a top four spot for both sides?
But with David Moyes’ side showing no signs of their ascent slowing down, that’s certainly the case. At the moment, they are only two points behind the Blues and are their biggest challengers.
Still, Chelsea have yet to lose under Thomas Tuchel since arriving in late January as they fight on three fronts.
West Ham hosted Chelsea in late April and in a huge competition for the European aspirations of both sides
Last season, Andriy Yarmolenko’s late winner at the London Stadium secured West Ham’s Premier League status between the two.
At an almost identical stage this season, the price for the win could be much greater.
MANCHESTER UNITED VS LIVERPOOL (MAY 1)
The two most successful clubs in English football come together at Old Trafford as we enter the month of May.
Sometimes this game doesn’t live up to the hype – the turnaround this season saw a largely dull goalless draw at Anfield.
But just a week later, the sides met in the FA Cup and it was a humdinger, with United 3-2.
At this point, Liverpool’s top four chase could be over. Or they could be in the middle of it. The extra important layer to this stormy derby could be decisive in their season.
Manchester United host Liverpool at Old Trafford as we hit May and the last few weeks
MANCHESTER CITY VS CHELSEA (MAY 8)
If the current 14-point difference – 11 if United win their game – continues throughout May, this could be the day Manchester City take the Premier League title.
Pep Guardiola’s squad has been virtually unstoppable since the turn of the year, and only United claimed victory against them.
While the focus will inevitably shift to glory on the Champions League front, City could claim their third league title in four years in this game at home against Chelsea.
For the Blues too, this match could be vital to their hopes for the top four. Prepare the fireworks.
Man City could take the Premier League trophy against Chelsea, which they defeated 3-1 in January
CHELSEA VERSUS LEICESTER (MAY 15TH)
Brace yourself. If, as reported, the Premier League pushes back this weekend’s games by a few days, this could be the day that fans will return to the best stadiums.
Up to 10,000 fans could be at Stamford Bridge for this match, looking at two teams hoping to secure Champions League football at this point.
Leicester flew high again this season and is third in the international break.
Five points above Chelsea, how big / small will that margin be six weeks later?
Chelsea’s last home game against Leicester saw supporters back on the terraces
NEWCASTLE USA SHEFFIELD UNITED (MAY 15)
Where will Steve Bruce’s side stand at this point after a scorching showdown that includes matches against Spurs, West Ham, Liverpool, Arsenal, Leicester and Man City?
Of course they can be safe. Or they can be deep in the dogfight to avoid the fall.
This home game against the Blades could spell a massive clash for their top-level future – and fans could be there to see it.
Imagine the opportunity if Sheffield United were to join in with a shout. Given the current situation, that would be a real shock on the penultimate Premier League weekend.
Newcastle host Sheffield United in their last home game of the season at St James’ Park
LEICESTER VS TOTTENHAM (SUNDAY 23 MAY, 4:00 PM)
Only time will tell if there is actually anything running on this game.
It could be a dead rubber. But it could be a Champions League play-off, just like Leicester’s last game against Manchester United last season.
The Foxes fell short on that occasion. Given their current eight-point gap to Spurs, they hope this will be completed on the final day.
It will probably be a bigger opportunity for Mourinho. Would his job be at stake on this day?
Leicester beat Tottenham in December – could their last day be a European decision maker?
FULHAM VS NEWCASTLE (SUNDAY 23 MAY, 4:00 PM)
Likewise, this has the makings of a massive Premier League season finale as these two are still fighting each other to avoid the decline.
Newcastle’s slip is Fulham’s most likely chance of survival. If they are within three points of them on the last day – with a superior goal difference – then it is in their own hands.
It really would be a case of Survival Sunday, focused purely on West London. With fans in it too, how good would that be?
If Fulham stays within three points of Newcastle on the final day, survival is in their hands