And so we move onto another day of Premier League action. After the famine of the international break, eat hearty at the table of Premier League banquet! Loosen that belt and go for a second helping, and drink deeply from the cup of quality football that actually matters.
Yesterday, FFC brought you all the questions you needed to know about Saturday’s footballing action, and today we’re bringing you everything you need to know about Sunday’s.
Remember, no stone is left unturned at FFC towers, we ask the probing questions and bring you all the pertinent answers. So here are this week’s musings:
It’s strange to think that Leicester could be accused of ‘bottling’ anything if they finished second in the Premier League this season, but that’s the situation we’ve arrived at. Claudio Ranieri has worked some sort of bizarre magic to bring Leicester City to within seven games of a Premier League title. Perhaps we need to dunk him in water to see if he floats.
In 2012, however, Manchester United were eight points clear with six games to play and threw the title away only for it to be picked up by Manchester City just across the road. That shows how precarious Leicester’s five point gap is with seven games to play. So, will Leicester bottle it? And by ‘it’ do we mean whatever magical elixir that has allowed them to play so well and top the table in April?
A lot rests on the results of Manchester City and West Ham in this regard, but over the past few weeks, Manchester United have started to look less like a team who have completely collapsed and (inexplicably) more like a team who can actually secure Champions League football for next season.
Are United good enough to finish fourth due to their own quality performances? Or will they only be able to take fourth spot if City continue in lethargy and apathy?
As they’re still in the FA Cup, Everton have a real chance of silverware this season, and Roberto Martinez has, at least, taken them to Wembley. But surely a team with the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Ross Barkley and John Stones – to name only a few of their better players – should be doing much better than 12th place in the Premier League.
The news that Lukaku could be looking to pastures new in the summer seems ominous for Everton, and that’s surely got to do with their performances this season and last – this season was a real chance to qualify for the Champions League, and that would have seen them in a much different position than the one they’ll probably find themselves in come the summer.
They would surely have to win every game from here on in, but title races always have a few twists and turns – if Leicester and Spurs start to drop points due to the pressure, who knows how many points it will take to win the title.
An Arsenal win this weekend coupled with defeats for Spurs and Leicester in tough games could see the Gunners back on track. Surely they couldn’t?