I don’t have to tell you that this is a massive day in the Premier League. Dreams may be realized or dashed today. Seasons could be destroyed. Or, we could edge closer to status quo leading up to next Sunday’s final day of the season.
The first match to kick things off is the biggest of the weekend with Newcastle United hosting Manchester City (8:30am ET/1:30pm BST, live on FOX Soccer in the United States). This will be a massive test for both sides. And with so much riding on this game, anything could happen. A win for Newcastle will put them into third place, above Arsenal. A win for Manchester City, and they’ll be one step away from lifting the Premier League trophy, as well as putting added pressure on Manchester United who play later that day.
Thirty minutes after Newcastle vs Man City kicks off, QPR entertain Stoke City. A win for QPR will move them one step closer to avoiding relegation, but a loss could condemn them to the drop next week.
At the same time that QPR plays Stoke, there are four other matches in the Premier League kicking off at the same time. Aston Villa versus Spurs is another match that will have big consequences on the third place and relegation battles. Bolton, meanwhile, is at home against West Brom in a match that they will desperately want to win. Fulham plays Sunderland in a mid-table battle, while Wolves play Everton in a match where the Toffees have a good chance to widen the gap above Liverpool.
And then, last but not least, Manchester United plays Swansea City at 11am ET/4pm BST (live on FOX Soccer in the United States). Depending what happens in the Newcastle versus Man City match earlier in the day, the pressure may be even hotter on Man United to win this match in convincing fashion. Manchester City currently has a +8 goal difference over United, so Sir Alex Ferguson’s side will want to score a hatful to narrow the gap.
So much of the focus this past week has been on how Newcastle United could be the team that has a massive impact on the Premier League title race, but most people have overlooked or dismissed Swansea’s chances because “they have nothing to play for.” As a Swansea supporter, I vehemently disagree. If the Swans could beat Manchester United at Old Trafford, no matter how gigantic that task is, it would put the Swans even more on the map as an incredible team this season. Swansea wants to continue to show the world that they can play football, even against the best and even in one of the cauldrons of world football. Swansea has everything to play for, with pride being at the top of the list.
Before, during and after today’s Premier League matches, post your rants, raves, questions and observations in the comments section below. This promises to be an incredible roller-coaster ride of a day. Hold on tight.