Liverpool look to ex-factor in Premier League title race with Man City

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

The raging title race between Manchester City and Liverpool will dominate the penultimate weekend of the 2018/19 Premier League season.

Both sides are pushing to claim the big prize and will look to continue their momentum, while Cardiff are fighting what is looking an increasingly losing battle to remain in the division.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at some of the key talking points ahead of the action.

LIVERPOOL LOOK TO EX-FACTOR IN TITLE RACE

With neither City nor Liverpool blinking in the run-in, the battle for the Premier League title remains the most exciting in years.

The Reds could be given a helping hand this weekend courtesy of two of their former managers, with a trip to face Rafael Benitez’s Newcastle on Saturday night. A win would return Jurgen Klopp’s side to the summit.

City play 48 hours later against a Leicester side resurgent under Brendan Rodgers, who came so close to delivering the title to Anfield in 2014.

Liverpool fans will be hoping Benitez does not make things difficult at St James’ Park before putting their hopes on Rodgers to give them the upper hand heading into the final weekend.

MAY THE FOURTH BE WITH YOU

Spurs are in the driving seat for the top four.

Spurs are in the driving seat for the top four.

While the two title protagonists continue at an unrelenting pace, the battle for the rest of the top four has been littered with errors and defeats.

After all four teams stuttered in recent weeks, Tottenham and Arsenal both lost last weekend while Manchester United and Chelsea played out a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford.

Spurs, on the back of their Champions League semi-final first-leg defeat to Ajax, head to Bournemouth in Saturday’s early kick-off knowing a win will guarantee qualification for next season’s tournament.

Chelsea are strong favourites to join them but any slip-up against Watford will give Arsenal and United, currently in fifth and sixth respectively, renewed hope of a top-four finish.

FIGHT OR FLIGHT FOR BLUEBIRDS AND SEAGULLS

After losing at relegated Fulham last weekend, Cardiff are now the heavy favourites to join the Cottagers and Huddersfield in the Championship next season.

Neil Warnock welcomes former club Crystal Palace to south Wales on Saturday evening knowing anything other than a rare victory will seal their fate, as their worse goal difference means even a point will only prolong the inevitable.

However, picking up a 10th win of the season would ramp up the pressure on Brighton, who go into the weekend four points clear of the drop zone but face a tricky trip to Arsenal on Sunday.

WOLVES IN SEVENTH HEAVEN

Wolverhampton Wanderers v Everton FC - Premier League

Not since George Burley guided Ipswich to a remarkable fifth-placed finish in 2001 has a newly-promoted side mixed as high up in the Premier League table as Wolves.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s side can all-but assure themselves a seventh-placed finish in their first season back in the top flight if they beat relegated Fulham at Molineux on Saturday.

Caretaker boss Scott Parker has led the Cottagers to three successive wins since their relegation was confirmed but Wolves will be confident of getting the job done in front of their own fans, knowing Europa League football may still beckon next season.

GOLDEN GOALS

Individual prizes are also still up in the air this season and the battle for the Premier League golden boot is likely to go the distance.

Dominated by players from teams in the title race, Mohamed Salah of Liverpool currently leads the way with 21 goals as he looks to retain the award from last season.

His team-mate Sadio Mane is a goal adrift, with Manchester City hotshot Sergio Aguero level with the Senegal international on 20.

There are a couple of outsiders still in with a chance of ending the campaign as the league’s top marksman, however, with Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on 19 and Jamie Vardy – the top English goalscorer – with 18 goals for Leicester.

Most popular

Fantasy Premier League tips: Paul Pogba and Man United players good differentials for GW37

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Each week, Sport360 will bring you tips for the English Premier League’s official fantasy football game. Fancy pitting your wits against us? You can join “Sport360 Fans League” using the code 2326997-532303.

Fantasy Premier League managers only have a couple of shots left at climbing up the rankings this season.

Gameweek 36 was a high-scoring one which yielded an average score of 69 but this weekend brings the penultimate round of the campaign.

The top six all boast inviting fixtures this time. Tottenham, Liverpool and Manchester United travel to Bournemouth, Newcastle United and Huddersfield respectively. Meanwhile, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City host Watford, Brighton and Leicester City in that order.

Here are a few tips to guide you ahead of GW37.

CAPTAIN – SERGIO AGUERO | MANCHESTER CITY | 11.9M

Mohamed Salah was our captain pick last week and if he was yours as well, you probably had a great GW36. The Liverpool star excelled with two goals and an assist against Huddersfield at home, scoring 19 points that doubled to 38.

This week, it’s another FPL favourite who gets the nod in Sergio Aguero. The Argentine (20) is one goal behind Salah (21) in the race for the Golden Boot and will be determined to overtake the Egyptian in the remaining two rounds.

City host Leicester with Brendan Rodgers unlikely to have his side sit deep, so Aguero could see a few opportunities.

There’s also the fact that the striker has been sensational at home this season. The last time he failed to deliver attacking returns at the Etihad was back in GW22 and he only played 14 minutes on that occasion.

Sergio Aguero (1)

ALTERNATIVES

MOHAMED SALAH (13.3m) definitely remains in the running after his stunning display at home to Huddersfield. Newcastle away should be more tricky but with Liverpool desperate for a win to keep pressure on City, anything is possible.

RAHEEM STERLING (11.6m) is only behind Salah (249) for points this season with 226 to his name. He’s always a candidate for the captaincy and arguably City’s most dangerous player as they look to retain their crown.

BOLD CHOICE

DIOGO JOTA (6.3m) has continued his excellent form and now has two goals and an assist in his last two games. He faces Fulham at home this weekend although the Cottagers have found a bit of form as well, albeit belatedly.

Diogo Jota

TWO TO WATCH

PAUL POGBA | MANCHESTER UNITED | 8.5M

Neither United nor Paul Pogba have impressed in the last month or so but now that the top four appears to be beyond their reach, the pressure is off – as it was when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer first took over.

Also, their last two games are arguably the most comfortable with Huddersfield away this weekend followed by Cardiff City at home on the final day. There’s every chance Pogba delivers in these games especially with him being on penalties. Only Crystal Palace (10) have scored more from the spot than United (9) this season.

Paul Pogba

RYAN BABEL | FULHAM | 5.5M

Ever since Fulham’s relegation was confirmed, they’ve been a different team. Scott Parker has overseen a run of three wins with his side keeping clean sheets in each of them. But Ryan Babel’s form has also been worth noting.

The Dutch forward has bagged four goals and an assist in his last six outings and is owned by just a little over one per cent.

Ryan Babel

For the very latest news, analysis and opinion download the Sport360 app

Most popular

Ex-Man United boss Mourinho feels he lacked the backing afforded to Klopp and Guardiola

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Ex-Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho revealed his desire to manage a club which backs the manager like Liverpool and Manchester City do.

The Portuguese was shown the door at United after a series of poor performances and fallout with the club.

Mourinho hinted that he should have been provided more support at United when he spoke about how Jurgen Klopp and Pep Guardiola have had a lot to say in their club’s transfer dealings.

“I would love to go to a club and be in conditions to do what Jurgen and Pep did,” Mourinho told beIN Sports, while working as a pundit covering the Champions League semi-final between Barcelona and Liverpool.

“If you look at the [Liverpool] team that started the game, how many of them were there when Jurgen arrived? A couple.

“And when Pep was not happy with the full-backs he had [at City in 2016-17] and in the [next] summer bought four [three] full-backs that he liked.

Pep

“When he bought one goalkeeper like Claudio Bravo and was not happy with Claudio Bravo, the next season he bought Ederson.

“When Jurgen is in the club and wins absolutely nothing for three-and-a-half years and he still has the trust, still has the confidence, still has the conditions to try to keep going and going.

“Probably this season they have a big chance to do it – the first time that they win a trophy.

“In my next job I will not be starting a conversation without knowing exactly what the club wants and what the club has to give in terms of structure and the club objectives.”

Most popular

Related Tags