EPL : English premier league title race heating up
The English Premier League season has reached boiling point. After 25 games , surprise leaders Liecester City continue to write their fairy tale with 53 points.
Exactly 12 months ago The Foxes were footed at the bottom of the log and it would take such a turn in fortunes for them to survive the chop.
Fast forward to Saturday, Claudio Reneira’s men routed pre-season bookies’ favourites Manchester City 3-1 at the Etihad stadium, courtesy of a brace by imposing German centre half Robert Huth, in between a beautiful typical Riyaad Mahrez strike. So convincing was the victory for Liecester that they are the new favourites to clinch the title, a tag Raneira dislikes being associated with.
Taking nothing away from the admirable football the outfit has displayed enroute to the top even with limited resources ,losing only twice so far to Arsenal and Liverpool, the real test lies ahead.
Arsenal ,who won 2-0 away to Bournemouth in a hard fought victory on Sunday, re-ignited their own hopes of claiming the title for the 4th time under Arsene Wenger after a series of poor results. The Gunners ,who last won the league in the 2003-04 season of the invincibles, sit 3rd on the table with 48 points.
The mouth-watering 14 February St Valentine’s day clash between Arsenal and Liecester City at the Emirates stadium provides further opportunity to cut down the lead by Liecester to within 2points. This could prove pivotal in the race for either team.
Manuel Pellegrini’s own final title aspirations with City are not diminished. The Chilean ,whose charges come to an end at the end of the current campaign with the imminent taking over of Pep Guadiola next season, vows to fight for the title, currently sitting 4th with 47 points.
City who boasts arguably the best squad in the entire league, have often been criticised for lacklustre perfomances in key moments. Earlier in the season they suffered a 4-1 drubbing at the hands of fellow title hopefuls Tottenham Hotspurs. They meet again next Sunday in another big clash.
The North Londoners have not been doing bad themselves. A string of consistent good results have seen Pochettino’s men claw silently into 2nd spot after their 1-0 win against Watford, with 48 points, ahead of Arsenal only on a superior goal difference.
Manchester United ,who drew 1-1 with Chelsea on Sunday, have fallen a further 12 points adrift of leaders log leaders and perhaps their focus should shift more to a top 4 finish.
Next weekend’s fixtures that feature the top 4 against each other will prove very crucial in the title race. This being the Premier League, expect a lot of drama and twist and turns to this thrilling storyline.
This week results saw Spurs, Arsenal, Everton and Newcastle moving up the log while Norwich, Stroke, Liverpool and Manchester City moved down.
Full Barclays Premier League results for the weekend
Manchester City 1 – 3 Leicester City
Aston Villa 2 -0 Norwich
Liverpool 2 -2 Sunderland
NewCastle 1 – 0 West Brom
Stoke 0 -3 Everton
Swansea 1 – 1 Crystal Palace
Tottenham Spurs 1 -0 Watford
Southampton 1 – 0 West Ham
Bournemonth 0 – 2 Arsenal
Chelsea 1 – 1 Manchester United
Full Barclays Premier League fixtures for the weekend
SARTUDAY 13 February 2016
Sunderland v Manchester United 14:45
Bournemouth v Stoke City 17:00
Crystal Palace v Watford 17:00
Everton v West Brom Albion 17:00
Norwich v West Ham 17:00
Swansea City v Southampton 17:00
Chelsea v Newcastle United 19:30
Sunday 14 February 2016
Arsenal v Liecester City 14:00
Aston Villa v Liverpool 16:05
Manchester City v Tottenham Hotspurs 18:15
(All times C.A.T)