The English Premier League has returned with a bang and despite Liverpool already having secured the title, there is plenty to play for regarding the Champions League qualifying spots in the top four (or five, if second placed Manchester City will get banned as planned). Four teams are vying for the places from 3rd to 5th within three points: Leicester still holds the third place with 55 points, Chelsea comes fourth with 54 and Manchester United fifth, tied with Wolverhampton Wanderers with 52 points. Three games have been played since the season re-commenced and it seems that the battle for those UCL spots is as close as ever.
Leicester had a fantastic start to the season and were one of the best EPL picks early on. Leicester took the third spot their own early on. They did have harder time already before the forced break, but after the return it’s been a nightmare. First they drew with relegation candidates Watford, then Brighton and finally lost to Everton. The team seemed out of shape and out of touch and they are now being challenged by hungry clubs itching for a chance to leapfrog the team and secure the UCL qualification spot.
Fourth placed Chelsea helped Liverpool to capture the title by stunning Manchester City at Stamford Bridge 2-1, after routinely snatching points at Aston Villa by the same numbers. But the amazing effort against City was then flushed down the drain when visiting relegation candidates West Ham. A lackluster and sloppy performance led to a 3-2 loss, when a win would’ve taken Frank Lampard’s team past Leicester to the third place. Chelsea’s efforts against top clubs is top notch, but the lower standing teams seem to cause issues. The Blues will have to secure the easy points first and foremost in order to keep their top four placement.
Because Manchester United seems to finally be wide awake. It took some time – and an extra break – for the Red Devils to turn into a challenger for the Champions League, but they definitely look the part at the moment. After drawing on the road with Tottenham Hotspur, United took two rather easy 3-0 victories from Sheffield United and Brighton. The team has gelled well and Bruno Fernandes has brought exactly what was expected.
And then there are the Wolves, lurking in the 5th spot, ready to pounce if any of the top teams stumble and fall. Wolves have performed admirably and been extremely disciplined and consistent. Their return after the break has been one of the easier ones, facing West Ham, Aston Villa and Bournemouth, all relegation candidates. Wolves won all the three games and did not allow a single goal. They are definitely a team to keep an eye on for the rest of the season.
You can keep up with the rest of the EPL season with BetQL’s Premier League predictions and if you want to bet on one of these matches make sure you take a look at a sportsbook bonus before you do. You can get free money to bet with from a local sportsbook just by creating an account.