Liverpool or Madrid are not my cup of tea really. Of course, oil and water do not go together. I will leave my team out of question here. Well, you may find out it if it leaks. On the last EPL matchday, Liverpool, thanks to their late resurgence, stand 4th just one point behind an electric Chelsea with 66 points. Just below them are the craving (not thirsty anymore because they have been drinking from their FA cup) Leicester. They want to eat European football’s steak. UEFA Champions league. They share same points with Liverpool but have 4 goals less. So why will Liverpool retain that last champions league slot? The answers are obviously in the last games on Sunday, but I think the outcomes are somewhat predictable.
Leicester play Tottenham who one expects to be desperate to savage their disastrous fall from EPL and champions league grace with an “assistant champions league” spot – the Europa league. Tottenham are a big name and have their ego and pride to protect. They would want to distinguish themselves from their stuttering neighbour in North London. They will leave no stone unturned and sweat their blood to beat Leicester away and revenge their loss at home to the foxes in their first meeting. In short, Tottenham would roar like wounded lions against mere foxes. Leicester, in my view will be satisfied with the Europa they have secured. I expect a win for Tottenham. Worst, a draw. That result will relieve pressure on Liverpool who also play simultaneously against Crystal palace (who have absolutely nothing to play for). In that case, a draw will be enough for Liverpool to go to Europe’s elite league next season. It would take incompetence on Liverpool’s side to not defeat Palace! It would be a monumental disaster the likes of which happened in north London recently where all that a fumbling home team needed to do was score one goal. One goal kpere to get to Europa final. They couldn’t in 90 minutes!
Anyways wetin consign agbero with overload. Let’s cross over to Spain. Madrid. They are going trophyless this season. Wait. Except they beat Villareal today and Atletico slips away to Valladolid. Let me repeat that Madrid MUST win to have any chance. Even a draw means Atletico are champions even if they lose. That’s because Madrid have 81 points while Atletico, with 83 points, top the league going into their last game of the season. Draw in both games award one point each and the gap does not change. A win for Madrid and loss for Atletico means extra 3 points for Madrid, none for Atletico and Madrid leaps over Atletico. A win for Madrid and draw for Atletico means they tie at 84 points each and Madrid are champions due to better head-to-head when they played each other twice earlier in the season (Madrid won and they drew).
The most important question therefore is can Madrid win? Will they beat Villareal? Although the odds are in Madrid’s favour, By some realistic chance, I see a draw. Villareal would want at least some taste of European football even if it is the watered down “special assistant” to Europa League called Europa Conference League. They will fight tooth and nail to beat or draw Madrid while hoping Celta Vigo does the damage to Betis to clinch the 6th position. Why not? They have won their last two games including against difficult Sevilla. All that said, I must sadly concede though that statistically and historically, Madrid are more likely to win notwithstanding their fading Galacticos glory. But Atletico will be more determined to hold on and sit tight. They will defend their top position with bronze bars in Gimenez and Felipe. They, with Mountain Oblak behind them, will block any goal like republicans block bills. What more? Atletico have the quick and ruthless Suarez whose hunger for trophies is insatiable. Koke and Carrasco will ensure that midfield is lock-jammed. Atletico need just one goal and they declare a box-18 lockdown. They are expert at this. They can do it. I am rooting for them. They will do it.