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Four Clubs Enter, Only Two Survive (To Play In The Champions League)

Liverpool and Manchester City are in the driver's seat for the final two UCL spots in the EPL, leaving Manchester United and Arsenal on the outside looking in.

After securing three points yesterday behind Emre Can’s wonder goal, Liverpool are primed to finish in the top four and qualify for the Champions League for the first time in three years. The Reds have a very manageable schedule down the stretch.

  • Southampton (H) 9th
  • West Ham (A) 15th
  • Middlesbrough (H) 19th

Boro might be fighting to avoid relegation in the final week, but their fate will likely be sealed by then. If Liverpool simply take care of business at home, 75 points should get them through.

Manchester City, sitting at 66 points, will probably round out the top 4 this year. Their final four games come against mid-table teams that are essentially safe from relegation.

  • Crystal Palace (H) 16th
  • Leicester City (H) 11th
  • West Brom (H) 8th
  • Watford (A) 13th

Palace have proven dangerous against teams at the top of the table, with recent wins against Liverpool, Arsenal, and Chelsea. Leicester have also been in form during the second half of the season, but City’s quality should be enough for them to stay above Man United and Arsenal.

 

Although they’re just a point behind City, United have a tough road ahead. Their best hope of qualifying is still by winning the Europa League.

  • Arsenal (A) 6th
  • Tottenham (A) 2nd
  • Southampton (A) 9th
  • Crystal Palace (H) 16th

The Arsenal fixture is a virtual knockout game for UCL qualification. A draw would probably eliminate both teams from top four contention, while the winner would have a decent chance. If Man United can come away with four points from their next two matches, they could push City for fourth. However, their Europa League semifinal matchup against Celta Vigo makes for a packed May, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see Jose Mourinho prioritize the Europa League with his player selections.

Finally, Arsenal is a true long shot at this point. With 60 points and five games to play they technically have the opportunity to make up ground, but each fixture can reasonably be seen as a must-win scenario. 

  • Man United (H) 5th
  • Southampton (A) 9th
  • Stoke (A) 12th
  • Sunderland (H) 20th
  • Everton (H) 7th

Arsene Wegner has a chance to prove his naysayers wrong. The best case scenario in May is sneaking into the top four and knocking off Chelsea in the FA Cup final. Based on Arsenal’s recent form, a mixed bag of results is more likely. A win against Man United would make it interesting, but it looks like Arsenal will miss the Champions League for the first time in nearly 20 years. 

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