Premier League Week 24
It’s Matchday 27 for the Premier League clubs playing this week, but we won’t have a full slate of matches this weekend. Everton and Manchester City played twice last week to reach 28 matches played already, and Chelsea will be playing Manchester City in the final of the EFL Cup on Saturday. Brighton & Hove Albion, Chelsea’s originally scheduled opponent for this weekend, gets another three days off before returning to action on Tuesday.
Nevertheless, it’s been 11 days since we’ve seen our last match in the league. For the clubs playing in non-league competitions, they’ve still been as busy, but for a lot of the league, it’s been a much needed break as we prepare to head down the home stretch of the season.
As always, the number in parenthesis before each club reflects their spot on our Power Rankings, and we’ll try to keep this list updated as the week progresses. Home teams are listed first, and winners will be indicated in bold. In the event of a draw, both teams will be placed in italics.
Friday, 22 February 2019
Saturday, 23 February 2019
12:30pm GMT/5:30am EST
(12) Burnley 2-1 (3) Tottenham Hotspur
3:00pm GMT/10:00am EST
(9) AFC Bournemouth 1-1 (7) Wolverhampton Wanderers
(15) Newcastle United 2-0 (20) Huddersfield Town
5:30pm GMT/12:30pm EST
(13) Leicester City 1-4 (14) Crystal Palace
Sunday, 24 February 2019
The Best of the Week
With two of the top six playing non-league football – and it should be interesting after Manchester City defeated Chelsea 6-0 two weeks ago – there’s only one match this week featuring clubs in the Top Six, so it’s been named as our “Match of the Week.” Manchester United, in the midst of a nine-match unbeaten streak – at least in EPL play – hosts Liverpool on Sunday afternoon.
When the clubs played previously this season – a 3-1 victory for Liverpool – it was the last match for former United manager José Mourinho, as well as the last time that the Red Devils lost in Premier League play. Caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær is making a case for taking control of the team beyond the season, leading the club to 4th place, one point ahead of Arsenal and Chelsea and in position to return to Champions League next season (though 14 points behind the league leaders).
One way for United to potentially close the gap would be to defeat Liverpool in this one; recovering from a 14-point deficit with only 11 matches left would be virtually unheard of and would require the three teams above them to go on losing streaks as well. It appears that the Red Devils will go yet another season without a Premier League Championship, their sixth straight season without one since they last won after the 2012-13 season.
Liverpool is no slouch, obviously. They’ve spent the bulk of the season in first place, losing only once (to Manchester City) along the way. And if they are able to avoid the loss on Sunday, they would reclaim sole possession of first place, at least until both clubs play again next Wednesday.
Will the Ole Gunnar Solskjær Premier League magic be enough to get Manchester United the win in front of what is sure to be a great crowd at Old Trafford? Or will Liverpool continue along on their inevitable march to their first Premier League championship since the 1989-90 season?
Guess we’ll find out on Sunday night.
Until next time…
Last Update: 24 February 2019, 1:00pm EST