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Sunday, 21 May 2017

Premier League Final Matches: Race for the Champions League Spors and the Golden Boot

Premier League: Race for the Champions League and the Golden Boot

Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Arsene Wenger
Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Arsene Wenger are chasing a place in next season's Champions League
Manchester City, Liverpool and Arsenal will compete for England's final two Champions League places as the Premier League season finishes on Sunday.
City can clinch third spot, and a place in the group stage, by winning at Watford, while Liverpool will secure at least fourth by beating Middlesbrough.
But Arsenal can sneak into the top four if one of their rivals slips up and they beat Everton at Emirates Stadium.
All 20 teams are in action, with every match kicking off at 15:00 BST.
So what are the big issues on the final day - and what is the latest team news?

Champions League decision day

Manchester City need a point at Watford to guarantee a top-four finish - but winning and finishing third will take them straight into next season's Champions League group stages.
The team in fourth place will go into a two-legged play-off in August, while whoever finishes fifth will receive a place in the Europa League.
With just six points separating Southampton, in eighth, and 16th-placed Watford, several teams also have the opportunity to improve their league position - and increase their share of Premier League prize money.
Burnley, for instance, could finish as low as 17th, earning £7.6m in prize money, or as high as 11th, which would be worth £19m - a difference of £11.4m.

Race for the Golden Boot

Harry Kane looks set to win the Premier League Golden Boot, awarded to the competition's leading scorer, thanks to his four goals in Tottenham's 6-1 victory at Leicester on Thursday.
Spurs go to relegated Hull on Sunday with Kane on 26 league goals for the season, two clear of Everton's Romelu Lukaku.
Belgium striker Lukaku and Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez, third in the standings on 23 goals, will face each other at Emirates Stadium as they look to catch Kane.

Chelsea get their prize - and chase history

No team has ever won 30 league matches in a 38-game top-flight season - but Chelsea will be the first to do so if they beat bottom club Sunderland at Stamford Bridge.
Antonio Conte's side secured the Premier League title - the club's fifth in 13 seasons - with a 1-0 victory at West Brom on 12 May, and will receive the trophy after Sunday's game.
Chelsea managed 29 league wins in a season, in 2004-05 and 2005-06, twice under Jose Mourinho.
Only two teams in the history of the English top division have achieved more - Tottenham won 31 games in 1960-61 and Liverpool 30 in 1978-79 - and they both did it in 42-match seasons.

A day for goodbyes

John Terry
John Terry made his Chelsea debut in October 1998
Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Hull are all leaving the Premier League after finishing in the bottom three, but there will be individual farewells too.
Chelsea captain John Terry is set to end his 22-year stay at Stamford Bridge by playing his 717th game for the club.
At Watford, manager Walter Mazzarri will take charge for the final time, with his departure having been confirmed on Wednesday.
A number of other players may yet be turning out for their clubs for the final time, with the futures of Wayne Rooney, Ross Barkley, Romelu Lukaku, Michael Keane and Gylfi Sigurdsson among those in doubt.
One question that will not be answered tomorrow concerns the future of Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger - who is out of contract this summer.
Asked on Friday if he would extend his 21-year reign, Wenger said only that his future would be decided at a board meeting to follow the FA Cup final against Chelsea on 27 May.

Premier League team news

All games kick-off at 15:00 BST on Sunday
Arsenal v Everton
Aaron Ramsey is fit for Arsenal despite limping off against Sunderland in midweek with a thigh strain.
Defender Laurent Koscielny could again miss out because of a calf problem, while Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is sidelined by a hamstring injury.
Everton manager Ronald Koeman has no new injury concerns.
It remains to be seen whether the match will mark the final Everton appearance of Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley, whose futures at the club are in doubt.
Burnley v West Ham
Burnley could welcome back Michael Keane, who has missed their past two games because of a calf injury.
Fellow centre-back Ben Mee is again set to miss out with a shin problem.
West Ham are without centre-back Winston Reid, who has had surgery to treat a knee injury, so 18-year-old Declan Rice may deputise.
Fellow defender Angelo Ogbonna, who returned to the match-day squad last weekend after three months out, is also available but lacks match fitness.
Chelsea v Sunderland
Chelsea captain Gary Cahill and top scorer Diego Costa are among the players likely to be recalled by the champions after Antonio Conte made nine changes for Monday's win over Watford.
John Terry could made his 717th appearance for the Blues in his last game at Stamford Bridge as a player.
Relegated Sunderland will be without 11 injured players.
Defender Lamine Kone and midfielder Didier Ndong are the latest absentees because of dead legs.
Hull City v Tottenham
Hull will be without Evandro, Harry Maguire and Abel Hernandez through injury.
They join Will Keane, Lazar Markovic, Ryan Mason, David Meyler and Moses Odubajo on the sidelines.
Tottenham await news on whether full-backs Kieran Trippier and Kyle Walker will be fit to return.
Christian Eriksen is likely to be recalled after being rested against Leicester on Thursday, while Filip Lesniak could start.
Leicester City v Bournemouth
Leicester are again without defender Robert Huth, who is nursing a foot injury, but Andy King could return from a hamstring problem.
Wes Morgan, Danny Drinkwater, Molla Wague and Nampalys Mendy remain out.
Bournemouth could welcome back midfielders Dan Gosling and Andrew Surman after their respective calf and knee problems.
They are definitely without the injured Benik Afobe, while Lewis Cook is away with the England Under-20 side.
Liverpool v Middlesbrough
Liverpool are hopeful forward Roberto Firmino will be fit to play on Sunday despite a muscle problem.
If he is unavailable then the Reds could select the same starting line-up that began the 4-0 win at West Ham.
Jurgen Klopp's side need a win to guarantee qualification for next season's Champions League.
Middlesbrough boss Steve Agnew may again be without Daniel Ayala, Gaston Ramirez and Victor Valdes because of injury.
Manchester United v Crystal Palace
Manchester United goalkeeper Joel Pereira is expected to be given his Premier League debut on Sunday.
Demi Mitchell, Angel Gomes, Josh Harrop and Scott McTominay could make their senior bows, while Paul Pogba and Timothy Fosu-Mensah will play.
Marouane Fellaini and Chris Smalling have minor injuries and may be rested for the Europa League final.
James Tomkins should be fit for Crystal Palace after an ankle problem but Yohan Cabaye is a doubt because of a foot injury.
Andros Townsend will miss the game because of an Achilles injury, while Scott Dann is expected to be absent with a knee problem.
Southampton v Stoke City
Southampton's Shane Long will miss out after breaking a bone in his foot at Middlesbrough last week.
Cedric Soares faces a fitness test after limping off in midweek and Ryan Bertrand is also a doubt.
Stoke's Marko Arnautovic is doubtful because of an elbow problem sustained in last weekend's defeat by Arsenal.
Ibrahim Afellay is still recuperating from knee surgery last month, while Stephen Ireland remains out with a long-term leg injury.
Swansea City v West Brom
Swansea City have no new injury concerns for Sunday's game and Paul Clement could name the same side that beat Sunderland.
Striker Borja Baston faces a fitness test but Wayne Routledge is back in contention after hernia trouble.
West Brom are likely to be without winger Matt Phillips again as he is still nursing a hamstring injury.
Salomon Rondon and Gareth McAuley should both recover from respective hamstring and thigh problems.
Watford v Manchester City
Watford could be without up to six central defenders, with Adrian Mariappa (knee) and Miguel Britos (calf) facing late fitness tests.
Sebastian Prodl is suspended while Christian Kabasele, Craig Cathcart and Younes Kaboul are all out injured.
Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany should be fit despite being substituted during the 3-1 win over West Brom.
John Stones has also recovered from a groin strain and could replace Nicolas Otamendi in defence.

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