Chelsea finished fifth, Man Utd worse than Moyes, Man City did not win – five tough prospects

That was a fun Premier League weekend, wasn’t it? Put some cats among some pigeons, right? The sand beneath our feet shifted, yes? We all felt a little silly to think this was a title race, didn’t we?

Chelsea finished fifth

But it has opened up some intriguing possibilities. Here are five things that seem a little strange but can definitely happen now. let’s go.

Manchester City could not win the league

Sunday was as unpredictable and brutal as the final episode of a good Game of Thrones season before they ran out of books and had to make it up as they went along. It would have been shocking enough for Liverpool or Arsenal to lose a winnable home game, but the way they both lost – politely, in confusion, with no goals between them – really suggested end times.

While the dusty result of all this is that Manchester City are two points ahead with each still having six games to play, any result other than a sixth title in seven seasons is now disappearing for Pep Guardiola’s machine. We have already started the post-mortem and are only half-joking.

And yet, technically, it is still possible, with the longest and most vivid imaginations, to create a scenario in which City do not actually win the league. We know, it sounds completely crazy, but stick with it.

The first problem now is whether Liverpool or Arsenal now need to be largely fault-free for six games, and Sunday suggests neither are in that place.

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And both have awkward-looking run-ins. Both have to play Spurs. There are trips to Goodison and Villa Park in Liverpool. Arsenal’s Chelsea test looks far more frustrating than it did a few weeks ago. Arsenal have to play three tough games, any one of which could have season-defining results, between now and the NLD, by which time Spurs will have had two weeks’ rest.

But let us not get stuck here. Arsenal and Liverpool are not on a good run, but they both have six games against teams that are not as good. There is not a single sport among them that appears completely unstoppable if focus can be regained and peak form reestablished. It is certainly possible for any of these teams to go on a winning run in six matches against such opposition. We have seen them do this. So let’s say this happens.

Now all we need is for Man City to move on. This is where things get tricky. That’s the beauty of a run-in, it really is. They have to face just one team from the current top seven, and this is a Spurs side in the grip of an existential crisis wondering whether it was really wise to throw out all the old ideas about how Barclays should be done, because While this leads to some exciting victories, it also results in some painful paddling.

City’s Premier League record at Spurs’ new ground is abysmal, but they calmed some ghosts with an anemic FA Cup win in January. This is not a fixture that now poses the same scare for City as it did in the autumn when Spurs were flying. They should win it.

But they might not. Equally they could run into Fulham or Brighton on one of their invincible red-hot days. Unlikely, but possible. City still have to play Wolves, who beat them impressively earlier in the season. As unlikely as it seems, and is, City may not win the league. Wow!

A wicked Champions League qualifier

The tempting prospect of a fifth Champions League spot has been there all season, with its prospects becoming less and less consistent with the prospects of English clubs during the tumultuous ups and downs of the season. Defeats to Newcastle and Man United in the European battle before Christmas were costly, but others kept the boat afloat.

It is still extremely uncertain whether the fifth Champions League spot will go into England’s lap – with a very good chance we will not know for sure until the European finals are played after the domestic season ends.

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But now we don’t even know with much certainty who might benefit from the campaign. It has been a three-way title battle for a long time, with Aston Villa and Spurs fighting for fourth place and Manchester United somehow sneaking in as an outside contender despite being completely out of sorts.

Suddenly, horrifyingly, hilariously, it might actually be Chelsea or Newcastle who are taking their runs to perfection. It’s still unlikely that any of them can catch Spurs (and pretty much impossible to catch either Villa, who are certainly fifth at worst after Sunday). But now it is very possible for two teams who until this moment were not even on the fringes of the Champions League picture. They could not score full marks.

Crystal Palace reached 40 points. again.

Thus completing the 11th consecutive 40-something season since returning to the Premier League. It’s heroic in itself that Palace have even created a situation in which them doing what they always do is remarkable in itself (at least to us).

Indeed he appears to have given up a lot of himself to maintain this glorious decade-long streak of always scoring 40, but never reaching 50. When they needed 10 points in seven games against Liverpool, West Ham, Newcastle, Fulham, Man. We feared United, Wolves and Villa, we really did. Now it’s a much less difficult seven than six. oliver glassner ultras montage

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