Manchester City were 11 points clear at the top of the Premier League in January, but the title race is alive heading into the run-in.
Liverpool’s nine straight wins ensures the Reds have the chance to leapfrog City into first place when the Premier League resumes after the international break. Both teams have their fate in their own hands and the title race promises to be one of the most exciting in Premier League history, with Man City and Liverpool both looking incredibly strong.
Here are six of the key upcoming fixtures that will decide which team comes out on top in the Premier League title race.
Liverpool v Watford, April 2
Having cut City’s lead, any positive result in this Anfield result will be enough to send Liverpool top of the table, with Pep Guardiola’s side in action away to Burnley later in the day.
Watford are scrapping for their Premier League lives with former Reds boss Roy Hodgson knowing the relegation battle inside out, so the Hornets are unlikely to be a pushover. Jurgen Klopp will also remember Liverpool’s shock 3-0 loss at Vicarage Road back in February 2020.
Manchester City v Liverpool, April 10
The importance of this titanic tussle cannot be understated, with home advantage potentially giving City a vital boost in a title race that will likely be decided by a tight margin.
Pressure on this clash will be overwhelming and both managers will be wishing it did not fall in between their respective Champions League quarter-final ties. Liverpool will have been away to Benfica while City take on Atletico Madrid at the Etihad a few days beforehand, potentially handing Guardiola’s side another narrow advantage here.
City drew 2-2 at Liverpool in the reverse fixture at Anfield in October, while the Reds have not won at the Etihad in the league since 2015, which was before Guardiola came to Manchester.
Liverpool v Manchester United, April 19
United might be a whopping 20 points behind City, but they could still have a big part to play in the title race, helping to decide which of their hated rivals will be celebrating come May.
Coming hot on the heels of Liverpool’s FA Cup semi-final against City, the Reds will welcome United to Anfield having failed to break down Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side on their last visit.
United will be desperate for revenge after their embarrassing 5-0 thrashing at home to Liverpool earlier in the season, but the Red Devils have not tasted victory at Anfield since 2016.
Liverpool v Everton, April 24
April’s daunting schedule gets no easier for Liverpool with the Merseyside derby following just a few days after United make the short trip to Anfield.
Historically, Liverpool have dominated this fixture but Everton are in desperate need of points, with Frank Lampard’s appointment failing to result in any kind of new manager bounce.
Everton finally celebrated an Anfield win in this exact fixture last February and there remains bad blood between the sides after Jordan Pickford’s horror tackle on Virgil van Dijk.
The Toffees would dearly love to take decisive points off their local rivals in this derby clash.
Leeds United v Manchester City, April 30
Leeds might be safe by the time City go to Elland Road at the end of April, but even if they are not they are unlikely to be pushovers with their new manager Jesse Marsch keen to impress.
Assuming City get past Atletico Madrid, their trip to Leeds will come in between the two legs of their Champions League semi-final against either Chelsea or Real Madrid.
Leeds lost 7-0 at the Etihad in December and will want to right the wrongs of that day, but Marcelo Bielsa’s Whites did hold Guardiola’s men to a draw in this fixture last season.
West Ham v Manchester City, May 15
On the penultimate weekend of the season, Liverpool go to Southampton while City have what is on paper a trickier test with their final away game of the season being at West Ham.
David Moyes led the Hammers to victory over City on penalties in the League Cup last year, ending Guardiola’s monopoly of England’s second cup competition.
City also could only draw 1-1 at West Ham last season, when Phil Foden cancelled out Michail Antonio’s opener for the Hammers, and a similar result here could cost them the title.
What is for sure is that there are certain to be lots of unpredictable twists and turns to come.