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Title race, Europe and relegation: The permutations on final day of Premier League season

There’s plenty still to be decided on the final day of the 2023/24 Premier League season.

Sunday will see either Manchester City or Arsenal crowned champions of England, with the Cityzens holding a two-point advantage over their nearest rivals.

There’s also European qualification to be determined for teams like Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and Manchester United, while one more side’s relegation will be confirmed at full-time.

Here’s everything that’s at stake heading into Gameweek 38.

Title race

Erling Haaland, Ruben Dias
Man City are poised to secure the title / Catherine Ivill – AMA/GettyImages

It’s another final day shoot-out where Man City have the advantage. The Cityzens hold a two-point lead over Arsenal after winning their midweek trip to Tottenham Hotspur but must still beat West Ham United to be absolutely certain of winning a fourth Premier League title in a row.

The Gunners, meanwhile, take on Everton at the Emirates Stadium. Mikel Arteta will be keen to ensure there are no slip-ups from his side while praying for positive news from up north.

It’s been a tight title race, one that Liverpool led for a total of 87 days – more than Man City and Arsenal’s 76 each – before falling away from contention.

Pos

Team

Played

GD

Pts

1.

Man City

37

+60

88

2.

Arsenal

37

+61

86

Champions League

Jurgen Klopp
Plenty of eyes will be on Klopp on Sunday / James Baylis – AMA/GettyImages

Liverpool and Aston Villa are both safe in the knowledge that, whatever happens on the final day of the season, neither will be deposed from their positions of third and fourth respectively.

The focus at Anfield will be on manager Jurgen Klopp, who will step down from his role this summer after bringing Premier League and Champions League glory to Anfield.

The Villans’ trip to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace could have been an anxious one but Tottenham’s defeat to Man City confirmed Unai Emery’s side’s place in Europe’s elite club competition next season.

Pos

Team

Played

GD

Pts

3.

Liverpool

37

+43

79

4.

Aston Villa

37

+20

68

Europa League and Conference League

Ange Postecoglou
Spurs need to avoid defeat on the final day / Justin Setterfield/GettyImages

Tottenham‘s Champions League challenge petered out in disappointing fashion for Ange Postecoglou but fifth place remains an improvement on last season’s effort of eighth. Spurs need only to avoid defeat at basement side Sheffield United to retain their position and qualify for the Europa League.

Chelsea could snatch fifth if they and the Blades both win, while a draw will definitely secure sixth. However, they would then need to wait until the FA Cup final on 25 May to discover whether they would play in the Europa League or Europa Conference League.

Newcastle United may still snare a spot in Europe but will only take sixth off Chelsea with a victory over Brentford and a Blues defeat to Bournemouth. If sixth doesn’t materialise, they must finish seventh above Manchester United and hope Man City defeat the Red Devils in the FA Cup final. That would secure a Conference League place.

Manchester United have two opportunities to qualify for Europe; through the Premier League and the FA Cup final. Sixth place is a stretch too far given Chelsea’s vastly superior goal difference, so instead Erik ten Hag’s team must better Newcastle’s result to move above Eddie Howe’s side into seventh. That would secure continental football of some sort regardless of the FA Cup final result.

If they beat Man City at Wembley, United would qualify for the Europa League. A loss and a seventh-place finish would result in reaching the Conference League, but two losses in their final two games – starting at Brighton on Sunday – would mean they don’t compete in any UEFA competition next season.

Pos

Team

Played

GD

Pts

5.

Tottenham Hotspur

37

+10

63

6.

Chelsea

37

+13

60

7.

Newcastle United

37

+21

57

8.

Manchester United

37

-3

57

Relegation

Gabriel Osho
Luton are set to go down / Richard Pelham/GettyImages

With Sheffield United and Burnley already relegated, just one place in the bottom three is still to be determined on the final day.

Nottingham Forest hold all the cards. They sit three points above Luton Town with a healthy advantage in goal difference and need just a draw against Burnley to officially avoid relegation.

The Hatters, on the other hand, have it all to do. Rob Edwards’ side must absolutely thrash Fulham and hope Forest collapse in a similar fashion against Burnley to stand any chance of staying up.

Pos

Team

Played

GD

Pts

17.

Nottingham Forest

37

-19

29

18.

Luton Town

37

-31

26

19.

Burnley (R)

37

-36

24

20.

Sheffield United (R)

37

-66

16

Highest and lowest possible finishes

Pos

Team

Highest possible finish

Lowest possible finish

1.

Man City

1st

2nd

2.

Arsenal

1st

2nd

3.

Liverpool

3rd

3rd

4.

Aston Villa

4th

4th

5.

Tottenham

5th

6th

6.

Chelsea

5th

8th

7.

Newcastle

6th

8th

8.

Man Utd

6th

8th

9.

West Ham

9th

9th

10.

Brighton

10th

13th

11.

Bournemouth

10th

13th

12.

Crystal Palace

10th

14th

13.

Wolves

10th

14th

14.

Fulham

12th

14th

15.

Everton

15th

16th

16.

Brentford

15th

16th

17.

Nottm Forest

17th

18th

18.

Luton

17th

19th

19.

Burnley

18th

19th

20.

Sheffield Utd

20th

20th

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