Sunday 20 October 2019

Why Manchester United and Liverpool could emerge as the big winners after a weekend of Premier League upsets

Manchester United boss Solskjaer was forced to apologise to the visiting fans after last Sunday's 4-0 defeat at Everton (Martin Rickett/PA)
Manchester United boss Solskjaer was forced to apologise to the visiting fans after last Sunday's 4-0 defeat at Everton (Martin Rickett/PA)
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Manchester United and Liverpool could emerge as the big winners following a weekend of upsets at the top of the Premier League, with the stage now set for a thrilling final few games in the unpredictable battle for a top four finish.

Tottenham and United appeared to have suffered a big hit in their bid to secure qualification for next season's Champions League after they lost against Manchester City and Everton last weekend, opening the door for Arsenal and Chelsea to take control of the table for a prized top four finish in the Premier League.

Yet instead of taking advantage of defeats for Spurs and United, Arsenal and Chelsea fluffed their lines to ensure that all four teams will have hopes of clinching a place in the next season's Champions League over their final few matches.

Arsenal's shock defeat against Crystal Palace at Emirates Stadium on Sunday ensured Tottenham would not be usurped by their local rivals in the ace to secure a third place finish, with Chelsea also failing to overhaul Mauricio Pochettino's side after they drew 2-2 with Burnley on Monday night.

Those two results handed United an unexpected boost after their crushing 4-0 defeat against Everton at Goodison Park, with the stakes now raised up to another level in their pivotal derby game against Manchester City at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

United's revived top four ambitions will also fuel Liverpool's hopes that their big rivals can take points off City in their battle to secure top spot in the Premier League, with a draw in that game enough to open the door for Jurgen Klopp's men to win the title if they secure victories in their final three games of the season.

United's home's game against Chelsea this Sunday will be a crucial fixture in the battle for a top four finish, with Tottenham in pole position to secure third spot if they can beat Brighton and West Ham in games being played at their new home stadium this week.

The fluctuating battle for a top four finish in the Premier League is impossible to predict after a weekend of surprise results, with the next few days likely to offer some clarity in what has developed into a captivating battle.

TOTTENHAM’S REMAINING GAMES

Brighton (h) - April 23rd

West Ham (h) - April 27th

Bournemouth (a) - May 6th

Everton (h) - May 12th

ARSENAL’S REMAINING GAMES

Wolves (a) - April 24th

Leicester (a) - April 29th

Brighton (h) - May 4th

Burnley (a) - May 12th 

CHELSEA’S REMAINING GAMES

Man United (a) - April 28th

Watford (h) - May 4th

Leicester (a) - May 12th

MANCHESTER UNITED'S REMAINING GAMES

Man City (h) - April 24th

Chelsea (h) - April 28th

Huddersfield (a) - May 5th

Cardiff (h) - May 12th

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