Leicester City are to suffer the ignominy of relegation just seven years after winning their first and only English Premier League title unless they arrest an astonishing slump in form that has seen the 2016 titlists win just one of their last ten outings. The Foxes are in a cul de sac thanks to a series of errors in the transfer market which culminated in the acrimonious departure of FA Cup winning manager Brendan Rodgers.
A no holds barred approach will be needed in the Foxes three remaining fixtures, starting with Monday’s date with Liverpool if the 2021 FA Cup winners, who twice finished fifth in the last five years, are to stave of the relegation monster. Leicester City, whose other fixtures are away to third placed Newcastle United and at home to West Ham United, begin match day 35 on 30 points, two adrift of Everton, current occupants of the final safe position.
Leeds United took the brave step of appointing reputed firefighter Sam Allardyce as manager but he must ignite a side languishing level on points with the Foxes and an equally daunting fixture list. Leeds United begin their three must win finals by hosting Eddie Howe’s dangerous Magpies in Saturday’s early kick off, before traveling to Europa Conference League semifinalists West Ham United and close the campaign by welcoming a Tottenham Hotspur side with designs on European qualification. Needless to say, Allardyce’s charges are underdogs in all three match ups.
Toffees boss Sean Dyce has called on his troops to replicate the spirit that propelled the eight time English top flight champions to a memorable 5-1 victory at Brighton on Monday. Easier said than done when their next opponents are division leaders Manchester City who they face on Sunday. But their less complicated fixture list which features a trip to the Molineux to face Julen Lopetegui’s Wolverhampton Wanderers and a home rubber with already safe Bournemouth gives them a better fighting chance.
Expensively assembled Nottingham Forest, who are three points to the good, travel to six time champions Chelsea on Saturday keenly aware that the west Londoners are not at their best. A subsequent home fixture with title chasing Arsenal may not yield maximum points but Steven Cooper will fancy his side’s chances when the twice European Cup winners travel to Crystal Palace on the final day.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, City boss Pep Guardiola is certain to order his charges to fully concentrate at Everton despite limited recovery time from Tuesday’s Champions League trip to the Santiago Bernabeu where they drew 1-1 with Real Madrid. The reigning champions boss the standings by one point from long time leaders Arsenal and have a game in hand. Victory at Goodison Park would put them within striking distance of a fifth EPL title in six years. Arsenal host Brighton on Sunday.
Leeds United v Newcastle United
Aston Villa v Tottenham Hotspur,
Chelsea v Nottingham Forest,
Crystal Palace v Bournemouth,
Manchester United v Wolves,
Southampton v Fulham
Brentford v West Ham United,
Everton v Manchester City,
Arsenal v Brighton
Leicester City v Liverpool