Okay, this isn’t entirely fair seeing as there are basically no other games. But, but, but, we have thoughts about why you should drop everything else you’re doing this weekend and watch the Sounders host Chivas. Would you like to hear them?
The Premier League is back a three month suspension due to the coronavirus pandemic. Below you will find a reminder of the Premier League standings as we get back to business.
[ MORE: Latest PL TV schedule ]
With 92 games remaining in the 2019-20 Premier League season, there is plenty to play for up and down the league and the standings are extremely tight.
Liverpool have wrapped up the Premier League in stunning fashion over Man City, with the reigning champions and current second-place side eager to focus on cup competitions.
Three of the top four should stay there unless Leicester City’s form dips considerably, but the race for fourth and fifth should be fierce. We may know whether fifth is a Champions League place after scheduled June 8-10 meetings to hear Man City’s appeal over its European ban.
[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]
With between nine and 10 matches left for everyone and eighth potentially being a Europa League spot, all the teams between fourth and 11th still have European hopes in the balance. That would change should Norwich City or Newcastle win the FA Cup, so call it 13 clubs.
The action is going to come fast and often, with the league putting together a staggered schedule of kickoff times that will make matches even more of an all-weekend affair.
Below are the Premier League standings in full, as we will updated them throughout the remainder of the 2019-20 season.
PREMIER LEAGUE STANDINGS
|Brighton & Hove Albion||32||7||12||13||34||44||-10||5-6-5||2-6-8||33|
|West Ham United||32||8||6||18||38||56||-18||5-3-8||3-3-10||30|
Sheffield United – Tottenham Hotspur preview: There are European hopes dripping from Wednesday’s meeting of Sheffield United and Tottenham Hotspur at Bramall Lane (Watch live at 1 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com)
Blades’ European hopes have taken a big hit since the Premier League’s return from the coronavirus pandemic. They’ve lost two-straight league outings and have just one win from five.
Spurs have taken four of six points in just two matches since the end of the break and need a win to retake seventh place from Arsenal.
Japhet Tanganga and Juan Foyth remain out for Tottenham, who is otherwise as healthy as its been since the calendar turned to 2020.
Jack O’Connell is getting closer to a return for the Blades but Chris Wilder says they “won’t make a high risk decision on him.” John Lundstram is “touch and go,” according to the manager.
What they’re saying
Chris Wilder on the evolution of big January buy Sander Berge: “Sander is going to be a really good player for us. He’s 21 [sic], we paid decent money for him. £20m is not an unbelievable number. It is for Sheffield United, I understand that. So Sander comes with that pressure. But he’s a grounded boy and he’ll eventually play as a sitting midfield player. He’s a proper midfield player, he’s a really good kid and he always will get mine and the boys’ full backing.”
Mourinho on the struggles of big signing Tanguy Ndombele: “Football is full of players who have made difficult starts and then ended well. When Luka Modric arrived at Real Madrid after six months he was labeled the worst signing in their history by the fans and the press. A few months later he was a champion, then a few months later he was European champion and then a few months later he was voted the best player in the world. So when the talent is there many things can happen with adaptation and if the talent is there anything good can happen.”
Odds and ends
The bookies aren’t so sure about this one, with DraftKings having hosts Sheffield United +225 and Tottenham +130.
Heung-min Son and George Baldock traded goals in a 1-1 November draw in North London.
Sheffield United – Tottenham Prediction
Spurs have the benefit of rest and potency up top. It’ll be a grimy one — Chris Wilder deems it so — but Tottenham gets the points 2-1.Follow @NicholasMendola
Join us for a Watchalong event on YouTube for Manchester City – Liverpool on Thursday (start time, 3:10pm ET on the NBC Sports YouTube channel).
Click on the video above to join us for the Watchalong, as ProSoccerTalk’s lead writer and editor, Joe Prince-Wright, will answer your questions and watch the action with you as you have a beer (or three) and some snacks.
The idea is to get fans together with JPW and have a good time watching the game.
Feel free to ask for his instant analysis on the game between the newly-crowned Premier League champions and the former champions by posting comments in comments section.
[ VIDEO: Premier League highlights ]
JPW will join you for the entire game, as he breaks down the live action in Manchester City – Liverpool and you have the chance to have your say on what Pep Guardiola and Jurgen Klopp should be doing in the game, plus dissect the tactics, which players are starring and more.
Basically, join us to watch the game (hence the snazzy ‘Watchalong’ name) and let’s all enjoy these juggernauts do battle with plenty of pride on the line as Man City try to put down a marker for next season.
[ PREVIEW: Man City – Liverpool: Everything you need to know ]
We hope you enjoy our Premier League Watchalong as the two best teams in the league collide at the Etihad Stadium. Click on the video or link above to get involved.
Frank Lampard revealed his thoughts on another wonderful Christian Pulisic display, as the USMNT winger put in a third Man of the Match performance in a row to continue his superb start to the restart.
[ MORE: Pulisic Watch – Analysis ]
Pulisic, 21, won the penalty kick and free kick which led to Willian’s two goals and came close to scoring himself on two occasions as he ran West Ham ragged.
With two assists and two goals to his name in his three Premier League games since the restart, the Pennsylvanian native has been right up there with Bruno Fernandes and Danny Ings as the best players since the restart.
Speaking to reporters via Zoom after the shock 3-2 defeat at West Ham, ProSoccerTalk asked Lampard about Pulisic’s strong start to the restart and if his form is the main positive from the defeat.
“It is a big positive. He is playing well, as we can all see,” Lampard said on Pulisic. “I thought him and Willian as wingers, who gets his two goals, but with Christian I think we all saw it during the season when he had a patch running up to and around Christmas, when he was playing towards this kind of level as well. Then he got injured and he’s been out for a long time. It is nice to see him back fresh and hungry and playing with the qualities he has. He’s going to get better. He’s a young player with great talent.”
Pulisic has been unplayable across the four games he’s featured in so far. He seems to be fitter, sharper and hungrier than he has been in a long, long time. Perhaps this is purely down to having a rest after the suspension from March to June where he could focus on fitness after rushing to Chelsea last summer following the Gold Cup and never really having a break.
Whatever Pulisic is doing off the pitch and in training, it is having huge rewards on the pitch. Right now, the Eden Hazard comparisons are cropping up time and time again and he’s certainly having the best spell of his Premier League and Chelsea career.
No player under the age of 21 has scored more than his seven Premier League goals so far this season and when the 2019-20 campaign is over, it will be one where Pulisic will look back and see plenty of ups and downs but it’s definitely ending on a high.
His form will be key in whether or not Chelsea qualify for the Champions League next season as they are in an almighty battle with Leicester, Man United, Wolves and even Tottenham and Arsenal.