Tottenham is pushing hard for a Champions League spot, but on Saturday, a title-hunting Manchester United squad is poised to push back.
That’s the key matchup this weekend, but there is plenty of other intrigue up and down the table as well.
Can Hull City or Burnley gain some ground on West Ham? How will the Manchester City/Arsenal match play out at the Emirates?
We could be in for a fun weekend.
Here’s a glance at the table:
Manchester United and Spurs have the 7:45 a.m. ESPN game this week, and the stakes could hardly be higher for either side.
The title holders could move into first place for at least a day with a win Saturday, as current leaders Chelsea don’t face Stoke City until Sunday.
United midfielder Darren Fletcher told The Sun, “Chelsea are the team leading the league and all the pressure is on them. We are just taking care of ourselves. They were in a situation where they might have felt they could have pulled away and be in a real strong position but they are not.”
Of course, Spurs are eying fourth place and a spot in next year’s Champions League.
Spurs’ midfielder Tom Huddlestone told the team’s Web site, “the games don’t get any easier and now it’s Man United away. They did us a favor last weekend by beating City but it’s going to be a hard place to go to and our record up there isn’t great. We’ve just got to go into it with the confidence we’ve shown over the last two games and hopefully we can get something out of it.”
Bolton Wanderers vs. Portsmouth
A win would guarantee the Trotters a place in the Premier League next season, and Bolton manager Owen Coyle isn’t taking Pompey lightly.
“In adversity, Portsmouth have shown strength and none more so than reaching the FA Cup final,” he told Click Lancashire. “They knocked out a Tottenham Hotspur side that has subsequently gone on to beat Arsenal and Chelsea, so that tells you how dangerous they are.”
Hull City vs. Sunderland
The Tigers are running out of chances to stay in the top flight, pushing Saturday’s game with Sunderland into must-win territory.
Hull are three points back of West Ham with three matches to play, and with a 21-goal deficit in goal difference, it might as well be four.
“Of course I still believe,” Hull manager Iain Dowie told the team’s Web site. “I believe we must put three points on the board on Saturday. That’s what I must believe and that is what we must deliver.”
Sunderland boss Steve Bruce has his sights set a bit higher – 10th place.