You could say that the race for the Premier League title is back on, with only six points separating current leaders Man City and Liverpool, with the latter having a game in hand. But, it’s the battle to secure a top-four finish where the real excitement continues, and more clubs than ever before fancy their chances.
At the time of writing, it’s Manchester United who sit in fourth on 47 points. But Arsenal, who are two points behind on 45, have several games in hand and are very much in the driving seat. It makes United’s stalemate at home to a struggling Watford even more damning. United have done fine under Ralf Rangnick, but in their last six Premier League games, they have drawn four, and this could prove costly.
When you’re deep into the second half of the season, what you can’t do is afford to let your form falter or stutter. Spurs, who also have games in hand on United, went on a run of losing four out of five, which has knocked them. But, a resounding 4-0 victory away at Leeds could see them back on track with a crucial game against United in a couple of weeks on the horizon.
Wolves have been in scintillating form of late. Bruno Lage has come into the building and completely rejuvenated the club. But, two games in the capital within the last four days has seen them lose 2-1 to Arsenal and 1-0 to West Ham, who are both rivalling the Molineux outfit for a Champions League place.
Speaking of Arsenal and West Ham, you could suggest that they’re the two sides to pay close attention to during the run-in. With their games in hand and their current run of form, Arsenal very much have their destiny under control. And, they have some incredibly favourable fixtures to come. If they continue on the same path, and if they’re able to chain together a winning run that we saw from Mikel Arteta’s side back in December, they could be back playing in Europe’s top club competition.
West Ham are a team that seems to have a dip or two where form is concerned, but they bounce back and show their resilience. They’re not the favourites to finish in the top four, but they have a solid squad, led by the excellent Declan Rice and a manager in David Moyes, who has all the experience required, to keep pushing between now and the end of the season.
If truth be told, fourth place is the position up for grabs, and it’s Arsenal’s to lose, even though they’re not currently sat there. But, just to throw a cat amongst the pigeons, Southampton are coming up on the outside and have recorded three wins and two draws from their last five. They’re some way off the rest of the pack, but a late run of form like this could put them right in the mix.