With one gameweek to go, and much still to be decided, this week we look at the battle for top spot and the variables that could affect who are crowned champions.
As you can see, City lead United by 1.52 points – a lead that is far from formidible. Should both teams win, then United still have a chance of finishing in top spot.
City’s game against QPR is the easiest on paper, but QPR’s lowly league position will actually count against Mancini’s men as United will get greater reward for beating a higher standard of opponent. QPR currently sit in 16th, while Sunderland are 11th.
Manchester United will also get more of a reward for winning because their victory points will include the away win bonus. City will need to keep piling in the goals to ensure that they finish the season as number one.
City 1-0 QPR = City 5.16 points Sunderland 0-1 United = United 6.81 points
Narrow 1-0 wins for both teams will see United, with the help of the away win bonus, claw back the small deficit that currently seperates the two teams.
City 2-0 QPR = City 5.68 points Sunderland 0-1 United = United 6.81 points
Should City nick another goal then their points score will increase by 0.52 points. This will be enough to see them hold off Manchester rivals.
City 3-0 QPR = City 6.17 points Sunderland 0-2 United = United 7.45 points
If both sides were to record larger wins, then City would still have the title, but the margin would be smaller. Were these scores to occur on Sunday then City would take the crown by 0.24 points.
If both teams win by the same margin then the trophy will be red. But if City beat QPR by a larger margin than United beat Sunderland, then the trophy will be sky-blue. However, if City beat QPR 5-0 and United win 0-4 then United will just clinch the title. (For the record, the title can go to Arsenal if both Manchester teams lost and the Gunners can beat West Brom by 65 goals.)
The form table suggests that there will only be one winner. City’s points from their last five games is a phenominal 37.85 and is nearly double United’s total of 19.67.
|7||Queens Park Rangers||3||0||2||22.34||17|
|8||West Bromwich Albion||2||2||1||20.59||10|