Date:Thursday March 27 2008
You will forgive me for not bothering with writing anything about England's performance, will you? Owen Hargreaves was quite good.
Instead of blabbering about tedious teams, let's focus on football. After a quite pleasing Grand Slam Sunday, United find themselves five point clear at the top and their main challengers, all of a sudden, are not Arsenal but Chelsea.
You may say the gooners are only one point behind the Blues but that's hardly the point. Being ahead by six and boasting a vastly superior goal difference, United can afford to draw three games out of seven and still finish ahead Arsenal whose form are nothing short of atrocious at the moment and still have to visit Old Trafford.
Logic told us that Arsenal should never be able to keep up the pace at the top with the thin squad they have but then logic told something along the same lines last season about United, too... But this time the early pacesetters did not defy all odds but finally collapsed as many expected them to do so.
That leaves us and Chelsea it seems. The Blues are unbeaten in 14 league games (the loss against Arsenal at Emirates was their last defeat) and we still have to visit their formidable home where they haven't lost in 78 league games if I recall correctly. So this title is by no means won - but it is ours to lose.
Why? Simple. United, with their fantastic goal difference, have to pick up 16 points out of 21 to land the prize. If they do that, Chelsea can win their last 7 games and it still won't matter. So let's take a look at the upcoming opponents of both teams.
Aston Villa (home): We have a wonderful record against them and they ran out of steam due to a very small squad. United win
Middlesbrough (away): One of the poorest attacking forces against the best defence. United win
Arsenal (home): They won at Old Trafford last season, unlikely to do it again. Draw
Blackburn (away): Set to be a physical encounter and they have a lot of firepower as well. Draw
Chelsea (away): The most important fixture. Likely to be a cagey encounter, with United surely looking to contain Chelsea and hit them on the break. Draw
West Ham (home): Three straight league defeats against them, time for revenge. United win
Wigan (away): We always defeat them and it should be no different this time. United win
Middlesbrough (home): They will surely overpower a Boro team who's got nothing to play for. Chelsea win
Manchester City (away): Citeh are tougher than usual this season but the visitors will nick it. Chelsea win
Wigan (home): Brucey's team stand no chance I'm afraid. Chelsea win
Everton (away): Their toughest test apart from our visit. Moyes' men fight for the fourth place and will be up for it. Draw
Manchester United (home): As above. Draw
Newcastle (away): They dropped vital points here last season but won't do it again. Chelsea win
Bolton (home): They dropped absolutely vital points in this fixture last season but it certainly won't happen again. Chelsea win
So, by my reckoning, United will finish as Champions again with 88 points, Chelsea will rack up 84 points to claim second place. Looks realistic I suppose.
Of course it's only a little game I did here, nothing to take seriously. What is certain is that the Stamford Bridge fixture will be hugely important. If we lose there, we could be in serious trouble, if we win, it's almost certainly curtains for Chelsea and for the Premier League title race. Can't wait for it.
Date:Thursday March 27 2008
Seven of the Best - Arsenal (a) (Friday November 21 2014)
Score for Us? (Friday November 21 2014)
Another Centre Back Mentioned (Friday November 21 2014)
Phelan Makes a Return to Carrow Road (Thursday November 20 2014)
Van Gaal Nominated for Prestigious FIFA Award (Thursday November 20 2014)
Will This End Those Rumours? (Thursday November 20 2014)
Who Is Telling the Real Story? (Thursday November 20 2014)
That Rooney Celebration! (Thursday November 20 2014)
The Return of Nani? (Thursday November 20 2014)
Rooney Gets His Wish (Wednesday November 19 2014)
|Man Utd||1||-||0||Crystal Palace|
|Man City||1||-||0||Man Utd|
|Man Utd||2||-||1||West Ham|
|4. West Ham||11||5||3||3||5||18|
|7. Man Utd||11||4||4||3||3||16|
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