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Key matches that could define the 2023/24 season

20 Mar 2024
Key matches that could define the 2023/24 season

With so much at stake from top to bottom, we pick out some of the crunch encounters

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The Premier League is fast approaching the business end of the 2023/24 season, with so much to play for from top to bottom. 

At the top, there's a three-way title race and an enthralling battle to secure European football, all the way down to 12th-placed Fulham.

The bottom end of the table is similarly tight, with Crystal Palace, 14th on 29 points, only eight points clear of Nottingham Forest, who occupy the final relegation spot on 21 points.

Premier League

Position Pos Club Played Pl GD Points Pts
1 Man City MCI 38 +62 91
2 Arsenal ARS 38 +62 89
3 Liverpool LIV 38 +45 82
4 Aston Villa AVL 38 +15 68
5 Spurs TOT 38 +13 66
6 Chelsea CHE 38 +14 63
7 Newcastle NEW 38 +23 60
8 Man Utd MUN 38 -1 60
9 West Ham WHU 38 -14 52
10 Crystal Palace CRY 38 -1 49
11 Brighton BHA 38 -7 48
12 Bournemouth BOU 38 -13 48
13 Fulham FUL 38 -6 47
14 Wolves WOL 38 -15 46
15 Everton EVE 38 -11 40
16 Brentford BRE 38 -9 39
17 Nott'm Forest NFO 38 -18 32
18 Luton LUT 38 -33 26
19 Burnley BUR 38 -37 24
20 Sheffield Utd SHU 38 -69 16
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There are several important matches, yet to have their dates confirmed, that could have a significant impact on the rest of the season.

Tottenham Hotspur take on Manchester City, while there is a Merseyside derby between Everton and Liverpool.

Let's take a look at some of the key remaining matches that could define the outcome of a remarkable campaign. From 30 March to 19 May, get set for a rollercoaster ride with HUGE duels every Matchweek.

Man City are one point behind Premier League leaders Arsenal and second-placed Liverpool, but victory at Etihad Stadium could return Pep Guardiola's side to the summit.

Arsenal are the league's form team, having won their last eight Premier League matches, and they also beat City 1-0 in this season's reverse fixture courtesy of a late Gabriel Martinelli goal.

The big matches keep coming for Man City as they host an Aston Villa side engaged in an exciting tussle for fourth spot with Spurs and Manchester United.

Unai Emery's men will be hoping to complete a league double over City, having won 1-0 back in December thanks to a goal from Leon Bailey, which ended a 15-match winless run against the reigning champions in all competitions.

If their encounter earlier this season is anything to go by, we should be in for a treat. December's thrilling end-to-end meeting at Old Trafford, won 2-1 by Man Utd, featured 41 shots, with 28 for the hosts and 13 for Chelsea.

Can Mauricio Pochettino's Blues claim a crucial victory that would ignite their hopes of overtaking United to claim a top-six finish?

Everton manager Sean Dyche marked his return to former club Burnley with a vital 2-0 win in December, but both clubs still find themselves embroiled in a relegation battle. 

A win for Everton would put a little more daylight between them and the bottom three, while for Burnley, a victory would give them more hope of avoiding an instant return to the Championship.

One team can't afford to drop points in their title bid, the other is in contention to secure European football next season - both Arsenal and Brighton & Hove Albion will be fired up for this south-coast contest.

Recent history favours the Gunners. They have won two of their last three matches at the Amex Stadium - including a 4-2 success in 2022/23 - and drawn the other. Mikel Arteta's side also won this season's reverse fixture 2-0 at Emirates Stadium.

Man Utd v Liverpool is one of the biggest rivalries in football. After ending Jurgen Klopp's quest for a quadruple in Sunday's incredible FA Cup quarter-final, can United also derail the Reds' hopes of a second Premier League title and boost their own prospects of a top-four finish?

Villa visit another title-chasing side, but they will need to improve on their record in north London, having won only six of their 28 last Premier League matches at Arsenal. 

It promises to be a tense encounter at Emirates Stadium, with so much at stake for both.

Brentford, in their third season as a Premier League club, have been sucked into the battle at the bottom following a run of only two wins in the calendar year. 

This match at Luton Town promises to be a key encounter in both clubs' run-ins as they aim to preserve their Premier League status. 

Two of Sheffield United's three victories in 2023/24 have come at Bramall Lane, and if they are to have any hope of avoiding the drop, victory against their relegation rivals will be a must.

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There is always an edge when these two north London rivals meet, and this derby could be the most significant yet, with Spurs pushing for a top-four finish and Arsenal seeking a first Premier League title in 20 years.

Can Son Heung-min, who has scored more goals in this fixture than Gareth Bale, Thierry Henry and Robin van Persie, be the matchwinner?

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There was drama in the reverse fixture between these two sides, when Spurs ended the Reds' 17-match unbeaten run with a 2-1 win at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September courtesy of Joel Matip's late own goal.

In Klopp's penultimate home match at Anfield - and with so much on the line for both teams - this has all the makings of another epic encounter.

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Villa complete their trio of fixtures against the top three teams over the run-in, hosting Liverpool.

In the penultimate weekend of the season, expect fireworks at Villa Park as the pressure ramps up.

Last season, Everton secured Premier League safety by the skin of their teeth with a 1-0 final-day win against Bournemouth

This match against Chris Wilder's Blades could hold similar significance this time around.

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Marc Overmars in 1997/98. Sylvain Wiltord in 2001/02. Will another Arsenal player write themselves into club folklore by scoring the winner in this fixture on the way to Arsenal lifting the Premier League Trophy?

The final day

With all 10 matches kicking off simultaneously, there promises to be unprecedented drama from top to bottom.

Title-chasing Arsenal, Liverpool and Man City are all at home, while the sides targeting a top-four finish - Aston Villa, Spurs and Man Utd - are all on the road.

Could Burnley v Nott'm Forest be pivotal in the battle for Premier League safety?  

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