Comparing the fixture difficulty of the PL’s top four chasers

Quick Reads
Ben White and Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United vs Arsenal, Old Trafford, Manchester, Thursday December 2, 2021.

Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea seem to be pulling away at the top of the Premier League, but who will clinch the remaining Champions League spot? 

Manchester United currently sit in fourth place, but West Ham, Arsenal and Tottenham are hot on their heels, with Wolves not too far away either.

With 15 to 18 games left of the season, which club has the most favourable run-in on paper? We’ve taken a look to see who could be joining the top three in Europe’s premier cup competition next season.

Manchester United

United’s remaining fixtures: Burnley (A) (20th), Southampton (H) (12th), Leeds (A) (15th), Watford (H) (19th), Man City (A) (1st), Tottenham (H) (7th), Liverpool (A) (2nd), Leicester (H) (10th), Everton (A) (16th), Norwich (H) (17th), Arsenal (A) (6th), Brentford (H) (14th), Brighton (A) (9th), Chelsea (A) (3rd), Crystal Palace (A) (13th).

Ralf Rangnick’s men are currently occupying fourth place in the table and are facing an average position of 10.9 in their remaining games.

The three consecutive games against City, Spurs and Liverpool in March could well prove make-or-break for the Red Devils’ campaign.

West Ham United

The Hammers’ remaining fixtures: Watford (H) (19th), Leicester (A) (10th), Newcastle (18th) (H), Wolves (H) (8th), Liverpool (A) (2nd), Aston Villa (H) (11th) Tottenham (A) (7th), Everton (H) (16th), Brentford (A) (14th), Burnley (H) (20th), Chelsea (A) (3rd), Arsenal (H) (6th), Norwich (A) (17th), Man City (H) (1st), Brighton (A) (9th).

West Ham currently sits in fifth, just one point behind Manchester United, but have played one game more. They face an average league position of 10.7 in their remaining games.

Playing Chelsea, Arsenal and Man City in their last five matches could prove very difficult – but if they can win them, they have a great chance of clinching Champions League football.


Arsenal’s remaining fixtures: Wolves (A) (8th), Brentford (H) (14th), Watford (A) (19th), Leicester (H) (10th), Aston Villa (A) (11th), Crystal Palace (A) (13th), Brighton (H) (9th), Southampton (A) (12th), Man United (H) (4th), West Ham (A) (5th), Leeds (A) (15th), Newcastle (A) (18th), Everton (A) (16th).

The Gunners are currently in sixth place and face an average league opposition of 11.8 in their remaining matches, and have played more games (23) than their fourth spot rivals,

Sitting just one point behind West Ham and two behind Manchester United, playing both these sides consecutively in April will likely prove decisive in where they eventually end up.

It’s five years since they last played in the competition. Will 2022 be the year they make their long-awaited return?

READ: Where are they now? Arsenal’s last Champions League XI from 2017

Tottenham Hotspur 

Spurs’ remaining games: Southampton (A) (12th), Wolves (H) (8th), Man City (A) (1st), Leeds (A) (15th), Everton (H) (16th), Man United (A) (4th), West Ham (H) (5th), Newcastle (H) (18th), Aston Villa (A) (11th), Brighton (A) (9th), Brentford (A) (14th), Leicester (10th), Liverpool (A) (2nd), Burnley (H) (20th), Norwich (A) (17th).

They are in seventh place but level on points with London rivals Arsenal, with a game in hand on them, as well as three games in hand on West Ham and two on Manchester United. They will face an average position of 10.8 in their remaining fixtures.

Given their games in hand, Spurs have a great chance to get Champions League football next season. Can Antonio Conte do it again?


Wolves’ remaining fixtures: Arsenal (H) (6th), Spurs (A) (7th), Leicester (H) (10th), West Ham (A) (5th), Crystal Palace (H) (13th), Everton (A) (16th), Leeds (H) (15th), Aston Villa (H) (11th), Newcastle (A) (18th), Man City (A) (1st), Burnley (A) (20th), Brighton (H) (9th), Chelsea (A) (3rd), Norwich (H) (17th), Liverpool (A) (2nd).

Wanderers are currently in eighth place but are not out of the race for the fourth spot yet. They are just four points behind Man United, with a game in hand, and face an average position of 10.2 in their remaining games.

They may seem like an outside chance for Champions League football for now, but if they win their next two games against Arsenal and Spurs, they might just be in with a shot.

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