MANCHESTER- They have combined for nearly 200 points, lost only five times between them, and won every single game in the past two months.
Compliments have flowed between their managers, each describing the other’s side as among the best in the world.
They are separated by a single point heading into the final day of the one of the most thrilling title races that English soccer has witnessed.
Both Manchester City and Liverpool would be deserved winners of this season’s Premier League title but only one team will be lifting the trophy tonight.
The players of the runners-up will likely sit disconsolately in their locker room and wonder, with some justification, what more it could have done.
City holds all the aces, knowing a win at Brighton on the south coast is guaranteed to secure a fourth league title in eight seasons, a sixth in total and — for the first time — two in a row.
Brighton, safe from relegation, is without a win since March 9, and has scored only twice in its last nine games. City, meanwhile, is seeking a 14th straight league win to finish the season and to secure the second trophy — after the English League Cup, won in February — in its bid to become the first team to win all three domestic trophies in a single English season. The FA Cup against Watford is on May 19 but here is how the EPL title showdown can pan-out.
First off; Man City beat Brighton and cannot be caught by Liverpool. But it’s not the only way the Blues could be crowned champions.
If Liverpool match Man City’s result, Pep Guardiola’s side will win the title – so if the Reds win, draw or even lose against Wolves and City’s result is the same, the Blues will win the league by one point.
Defeat wouldn’t end City’s title hopes if Liverpool can only draw – provided there aren’t a couple of extraordinary results.
For the above to work in Liverpool’s favour, City would have to avoid defeat by five goals as the Blues have a goal difference that is +4 better as things stand.
A 4-0 loss to the Seagulls and a Liverpool draw would still see City crowned champions by virtue of more goals scored – unless Liverpool drew 5-5 which would see the title go to Merseyside.
And there is one more, highly unlikely possibility to consider – a Premier League title play-off between City and Liverpool.
For that to happen, only one set of results would see both City and Liverpool end with identical goals scored and goals conceded records, and that is a 4-0 defeat for the Blues and a 4-4 draw at Anfield.
Brighton vs Man City (SS10)
Burnley vs Arsenal (SS7)
C. Palace vs Bournemouth
Fulham vs Newcastle
Leicester vs Chelsea (SS8)
Liverpool vs Wolves (SS3)
Man United vs Cardiff (SS9)
Southampton vs Huddersfield
Spurs vs Everton (SS5)
Watford vs West Ham (SS12)
Goal Rush on SS3