AHEAD OF SEASON’S END
Answers awaiting heading into the penultimate weekend
LONDON guys have their parties.”
TOTTENHAM had hoped their final home game at White Hart Lane would take place with the team still in the thick of the title race.
Instead, following last weekend’s 1-0 defeat at West Ham United, the likelihood is that by the time Mauricio Pochettino’s men kick off against Manchester United, Chelsea will have already captured the crown.
Nevertheless, Sunday’s game is an opportunity to bid goodbye to White Hart Lane, the club’s home since 1899, with a 14th consecutive home victory in the league.
It would equal the club record and set a new mark for successive home league wins within the same campaign.
Spurs will play at Wembley next season before moving into their new stadium, which is being built on the site of their current home, in August 2018.
THIRD and fourth in the table ahead of the weekend’s matches, Liverpool and Manchester City know they can guarantee a top-four finish — and with it a Champions League qualifying berth — if they win their remaining games.
Liverpool visit West Ham, a team they have not beaten in five encounters, on Sunday, while City host outgoing champions Leicester City tomorrow.
Asked how Liverpool would feel if they missed out on a place in the top four, where they have spent the vast bulk of the season, vice-captain James Milner said: “Sick.”
“This is a team and a club that need to be in the Champions League,” he added.
“We have got to win the last two and see where that takes us.”
Arsenal, three points below City in fifth place after Wednesday’s 2-0 win at Southampton, and Manchester United, a point further back in sixth, are both reliant on their rivals dropping points.
HULL City’s unexpected 2-0 defeat at home to relegated Sunderland last weekend, coupled with Swansea City’s
1-0 victory over Everton, left Marco Silva’s side the prime candidates to fill the sole remaining relegation spot.
A point below
Swansea in 18th place, Hull will be relegated along with Sunderland and Middlesbrough if they lose at Crystal Palace on Sunday and Swansea beat Sunderland tomorrow.
“This squad of boys, the core is special and we need to dig deep now,” former Dundee United leftback Andy Robertson told Tigers TV, Hull’s in-house television channel.
“If we can do that, I am sure we can hopefully get positive
Reuters results in the next two games. And at the end of the season be above that line.”
IF Palace can avoid defeat at home to Hull, they will guarantee safety for both themselves and Watford and Burnley, both of whom would be beyond Hull’s reach.
But Watford and Burnley are in control of their own destinies and can secure survival by avoiding defeat at Everton and Bournemouth respectively. AFP
Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho in action against Southampton during their Premier League match last Sunday.