Before going into the analysis I am fully aware of the fact that each and every game counts in the English Premier League, Leicester home is as important as United away and these fixtures have been handpicked only because they are against direct rivals for a top four finish.
Everton(h) 1st March
This is the first of the fab four fixtures and although Everton have had a terrible season so far and are not in the race for a UCL spot, they have been something of a bogey team for us in recent seasons. We haven’t won against them for the last two seasons in the league and suffered a humiliating 3-0 loss at Goodison Park last year. Although we did well to recover from a two goal deficit early this campaign, it’s quite some time since we comfortably dispatched the Toffees (4-1 FA Cup win aside). This game comes after our European game against Monaco and we have to win to stay on course. It’s a game if we don’t win will pose serious questions in our top 4 quest.
Liverpool(h) 4th April
Come the start of April we will be facing the red half of Merseyside at the Emirates. We have done well against Liverpool in recent years except for a certain, erm 5-1 game. This game against Liverpool could go a long way in deciding which of the two teams last the distance. Liverpool are slowly finding their feet after a stuttering first half. The Merseysiders will be looking to defeat the Gunners which will be a huge statement but at the Emirates Arsenal have not lost to Liverpool since a 2-0 defeat back in 2011. If the Gunners could get the 3 points it will be a massive boost going into the last quarter of the season.
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Arguably the toughest of the fixtures, Arsenal welcome Chelsea and given the way the league table is shaping up Chelsea could be crowned Champions on the day. But don’t expect Chelsea to do us any favors. A team managed by that notorious Portuguese twat never does Arsenal any favour in the best of times and given his history with Wenger I believe the fixture will take a greater significance especially if Chelsea don’t win the title by the time they visit. As it is well documented Arsene has never won against Mourinho and it would be the perfect revenge if we could just inflict a huge defeat (6-0 please and Alexis scoring a hat trick, Terry sent off for kicking Courtois) on them and hopefully they stutter in the race. And there is the small matter of a certain Spaniard making his return.
Manchester United(a) 16th May
Our only away fixture in that list and one I fully expect to have a direct impact on the positions in which either of the teams finish. The game at Old Trafford is something of a cup final for us and it may well be regarded as a fourth place decider. Our record there is shabby and we failed to defeat them at Emirates in a game that we almost battered them for long periods. A draw may not be a bad result but we must get to a place where a draw would suffice us. Wouldn’t it be great if we were to defeat them, hand them a destructive blow and push them into the Europa league? Just wishful thinking though.
What fixtures are you most looking forward to or worried about? Share your thoughts below..