Sports

Last Gasp for Arsenal, Chelsea to Finish in Style; Premier League Previews and Predictions

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As the English Premier League enters its final day, the only battles left are, technically, for the last two Champions League spots. While Chelsea and Tottenham already booked their spots in the elite competition, Manchester City would need a dramatic loss to not make it. The real battle is therefore between Liverpool who would finish in the top 4 for the second time in 8 years and Arsenal who are at the verge of finishing outside the top 4 for the first time in a very long time. Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Hull City Tigers are already relegated. The final day of the season is notable for its many intrigues. This is the Premier League final day previews.


First vs Last

It would be a joyous occasion for Champions Chelsea who will be lifting their 2nd EPL title in three years. They will want to end the season on a dominating note when they take on bottom placed Sunderland, the very same side they played on the final day of the 2014/15 season when they last won the league. Sunderland have lost 22 EPL games against Chelsea, their second worst loss record after Manchester United. But Chelsea have twice ended a premier league season with a loss at Stamford Bridge. How disappointing will it be if it were to happen a third time on the season they win the league.

Chelsea win premier league title

Chelsea celebrate with their manager. Image: Twitter

Asides Loftus-Cheek who’s doubtful, Chelsea have no injury worries. Kirchhoff, McNair and Watmore are injured for Sunderland while Anichebe, Pienaar and Denayer are doubts.

Kickoff: Sunday, 3pm

Venue: Stamford Bridge (Chelsea)

Referee: Neil Swarbrick

Prediction: An emphatic win for Chelsea.


Last Gasp

Arsenal have recorded a series of wins which have shot them once more into top 4 contention. As they make a last gasp effort at breaking through, they realise their fate isn’t in their own hands as they would be hoping for a Liverpool loss or draw to scale through if they win. But they take on an Everton side that seem to have lost steam after a run of impressive form. After beating Arsenal in the first leg, Everton will be looking to complete the double against them for the first time since 1986. But they haven’t beating Arsenal in their last 20 league matches at Arsenal. Considering that Arsenal have won all of their last nine final day matches at home, completing a double against them would be a tall order for Everton. Another key battle here is the race for the EPL golden boot. Lukaku with 24 goals would be battling with Arsenal’s Sanchez at 23 goals in the same match, though it would be hard for either of them to match Harry Kane’s 26 goals. If Lukaku wins it though, he would become the first player from a club outside the top 4 to win it since Chelsea’s Hasselbaink in 2001.

Cazorla and Reine-Adelaide are injured for Arsenal while Oxlade-Chamberlain is a doubt. Funes Mori, Lennon, Coleman and Bolasie are injured for Everton while Stekelenburg and McCarthy are doubts.

Kickoff: Sunday, 3pm

Venue: Emirates Stadium (Arsenal)

Referee: Michael Oliver

Prediction: I think Arsenal will win this one though I don’t think they’ll finish in the top 4.


Memories

Once again, Manchester United aren’t in the top 4, thanks to an amazing number of draws where they should win. But it is still a season of memories for them nonetheless, winning the League Cup, qualifying into the final of the Europa League and having the longest unbeaten streak in the league. But they have since lost two back to back league matches with a draw in their last, a run of form they will want to correct when they take on a Crystal Palace side that have been overly underwhelming of late. Manchester United have never lost to Palace in the Premier League, winning 12 and drawing 3. Coupled with the fact that Palace have failed to win in each of their last five final day fixtures away from home, United might just get their wish.

United had a memorable season. Image: Guardian

Ibrahimovic, Young, Rojo, Shaw and Fosu-Mensah are all injured for United while Fellaini is a doubt. Townsend, Wickham, Sakho and Souare are all injured for Palace while Dann and Cabaye are doubts.

Kickoff: Sunday, 3pm

Venue: Old Trafford (Manchester)

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Prediction: I see a draw playing out here.


Once Again

Liverpool have missed out of Europe’s elite competition for a very long time. A win in their final game of the season will launch them right back into it. They are home to a Middlesbrough side that will be ending the season, not just with their fewest wins ever in a Premier League season (5), but also with the fewest shots on target in the EPL this season. Liverpool have won each of their last four matches at home to Middlesbrough. Knowing that a win will earn them only their second top 4 finish in 8 years, they will be playing this match like it’s the World Cup final.

Mane and Ings are injured for Liverpool while Henderson is a doubt. Ramirez, Ayala, Guedioura and Valdes are all doubts for Middlesbrough.

Kickoff: Sunday, 3pm

Venue: Anfield (Liverpool)

Referee: Martin Atkinson

Prediction: Big win for Liverpool.

Ejike Kanife

Reader. Writer. Lover.

    2 Comments

    1. Anthony

      May 21, 2017 at 2:13 am

      We are Chelsea, and we are champions!

      • Ejike Kanife

        Ejike Kanife

        May 21, 2017 at 5:19 am

        Congratulations. But can you guys make it a double next weekend?

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