News ID: 271985
Published: 0230 GMT July 25, 2020

European football, survival up for grabs in Premier League finale

European football, survival up for grabs in Premier League finale

The Premier League will finally reach the end of its longest season on Sunday with plenty still on the line at both ends of the table.

Manchester United and Leicester face each other in a shootout for a place in the Champions League next season with Chelsea also hoping to secure its place in the top four, AFP reported.

Wolves and Tottenham are vying for one place in the Europa League.

And at the bottom it could not be closer with one goal separating Aston Villa just outside the relegation zone from Watford in the bottom three, while Bournemouth also has a chance of beating the drop.

Leicester fell out of the top four for the first time since September in midweek after a run of three wins in 13 games either side of the coronavirus shutdown.

However, United's and Chelsea's failures to win on Wednesday means the door is still open for Brendan Rodgers's men to salvage all the good work they did early in the season with victory on home soil on Sunday.

Leicester is hampered by injuries to James Maddison, Ben Chilwell and Ricardo Pereira, but has had a full week to prepare in stark contrast to United's packed schedule.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men have looked jaded in the past week in losing 3-1 to Chelsea in the FA Cup semifinals and being held 1-1 at home by West Ham.

United has overturned an eight-point deficit to Leicester since the restart, but Rodgers is hoping it is the Red Devils who fold under the pressure.

"We would love to be able to do that but when you are a club like Manchester United, or one of those super clubs, there is a need to be in the Champions League for many reasons," said Rodgers.

Chelsea just needs a point at home to Wolves to seal Champions League football next season, but should Frank Lampard's men lose, then a draw between Leicester and United would see the latter two finish in the top four.

Whoever misses out on the Champions League between United, Chelsea and Leicester will be guaranteed fifth and a place in the Europa League next season.

Wolverhampton is looking to go one better than its fine first campaign back in the top-flight last season by finishing in the top six and have the potential to upset Chelsea's push for the Champions League at Stamford Bridge.

However, any slip from Nuno Espirito Santo's men would give Spurs the chance to move into sixth.

Jose Mourinho's side has won its last three and will be confident ahead of a trip to Crystal Palace, which has lost its last seven games.

Seventh could still be good enough for European football next season, but that depends on Chelsea beating Arsenal in the FA Cup final on August 1.



At the bottom, two of Bournemouth, Watford and Villa will join already relegated Norwich in the Championship next season.

Villa has the upper hand with a three-point lead on Bournemouth and a marginally better goal difference than Watford.

Dean Smith's men also have momentum after a 1-0 win over Arsenal on Tuesday and travel to a West Ham side now sure of its place in the Premier League next season.

Watford's sacking of Nigel Pearson with just two games of the season remaining did the Hornets little good in a 4-0 thrashing at the hands of Manchester City on Wednesday and they travel to Arsenal needing to better Villa's result.

Should both lose then Bournemouth could extend its five-season stay in the top-flight by beating Everton at Goodison Park.



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