10 talking points of the Premier League

There are 11 rounds of matches left to play in the 2017/18 Premier League season. Here are the 10 talking points that have the fans buzzing.

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How soon will Manchester City wrap up the title?

City holds a massive 16-point lead over nearest chasers Manchester United and the only question now is ‘when’ rather than ‘if’ they will secure the title. Assuming United win all 11 of their remaining league matches (and that’s a stretch given their limp performance against Newcastle on Sunday) they would end up on 89 points. For Pep Guardiola’s team, who already have 72 on the board, that means six more wins would guarantee glory. And where is City’s sixth league game from now? You guessed it: at home against United on April 7. 

Who’s going to win the top scorer’s prize?

It’s a three-horse race at the moment: Tottenham’s Harry Kane tops the charts with 23 goals, and he has Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah breathing down his neck on 22. But lurking ominously behind them is Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero, whose four-goal haul this past weekend has brought him right into contention on 21 strikes. 

Harry Kane
Image Source: Sky Sports

Can Tottenham Hotspur keep a hold of Harry Kane?

With Real Madrid reportedly eyeing up a big-money bid for Harry Kane, can Tottenham Hotspur keep a hold of their ace marksman? The 24-year-old doesn’t seem like the kind who’ll have his head turned by offers from abroad, but his persistent excellence makes him a prized asset – one Spurs may be forced to relinquish if enough money is put on the table. 

Does Kevin De Bruyne have any challengers for the Player of the Season award?

‘No’ seems like the only reasonable answer, given the Belgian’s brilliance for City this season. De Bruyne’s tally of 14 assists is comfortably the best in the Premier League and he’s chipped in with seven goals of his own. The likes of Salah, Kane and De Bruyne’s teammates Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling and Aguero have been excellent, but the 26-year-old midfielder is on a different level altogether. 

Kevin De Bruin
Image Source: Manchester Evening News

Will Arsenal’s new attack make any difference?

Probably not. While the Gunners’ reuniting of Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is certainly exciting, their problem remains a leaky defence and a lack of steel in midfield – something their new attack does absolutely nothing to address. 

Will Alexis Sanchez fire at Man United, and will Paul Pogba get out of his funk?

Sanchez has already shown signs of promise at United, though his teammates are yet to really ‘click’ with him in the attack. Yet the Chilean possesses such quality that it’s surely only a matter of time before he’s a favourite with the Old Trafford faithful. Of more concern to Red Devils fans and manager, Jose Mourinho is the slump in form of Paul Pogba, who looks jaded and uninspired. Without his energy in midfield, United will struggle to assert themselves. 

Alexis-Sanchez
Image Source: Daily Express

Can Antonio Conte survive to the end of the season? And who will replace him?

Antonio Conte appears to be a dead man walking at Chelsea, despite having delivered the title less than a year ago. Whether the Italian survives to see out the season remains to be seen, with the Blues in a tough fight to finish in the top four (see next talking point). If Conte does get the chop, Luis Enrique – who took Barcelona to a treble triumph in 2014/15 – looks to be his likely successor. 

Who’s going to finish in the top four?

We know Man City will take the first spot, but the three places below them – and the lucrative tickets into the UEFA Champions League that come with them – are very much up for grabs. Man United appeared to have a strong hold on second, but their defeat to Newcastle suggests they are not guaranteed a top-four finish: it’s just four points between them and fifth-placed Spurs, with Liverpool and Chelsea sandwiched in between. Four into three won’t go, and one of these heavyweights will have to settle for Europa League football next term.

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Is any club in the bottom half safe from relegation?

Let’s put it this way: even Bournemouth (who round out the top half in 10th place) will be looking over their shoulder with trepidation, as it’s just five points between them and Southampton in 18th (the start of the red zone for relegation). West Bromwich Albion, at the very bottom of the log, look destined to go down, but the two teams to join them is anybody’s guess. 

Is David Moyes on the comeback trail?

Moyes has done a fine job at West Ham United since replacing Slaven Bilic earlier this season, but his club remains very much in a relegation battle despite a solid victory over Watford this past weekend. If the Scotsman is to have a long stay at the London club, he simply must win their fight against the dreaded drop.

David Moyes
Image Source: The Runner Sports