Does anybody else miss the drama we saw at the Etihad at the end of the 2011-2012 season? It was Aguero’s strike that sent ripples through Manchester and the rest of England, as Manchester United were forced to stop their celebrations as news of a late extra-time winner meant they were no longer the champions. Manchester City won the league with an 8 goal better goal difference than their fiercest rivals. Since then, the point gap between the champions and the second place team after the final match week has started to become disappointingly large.
Top 2 Teams and Their Points Total (2012-2013 to 2017-2018)
- Manchester United, 89 points
- Manchester City, 78 points
2013-2014 (Closest point gap since 2011-2012 season)
- Manchester City, 86 points
- Liverpool, 84 points
- Chelsea, 87 points
- Manchester City, 79 points
- Leicester City, 81 points
- Arsenal, 71 points
- Chelsea, 93 points
- Tottenham, 86 points
- Manchester City, 100 points (!)
- Manchester United, 81 points
The 2013-2014 season was the only one that saw the runners up come within six points of the champions. Even Leicester City finished a full ten points ahead of a decent Arsenal side during their Cinderella story of a season at the King Power Stadium. In 2016-2017, Spurs gave Chelsea a challenge, but could not stay close enough to have a chance at winning the league. Last season, arguably the least competitive title race ever, saw Manchester City absolutely annihilate the league, including other big six clubs.
So, for the first time in quite a few years, we could be potentially facing a title race that comes down to the final day. At the moment, the title race consists of Liverpool and Manchester City with only two matches left to play. Here is the current table:
2018-2019 (36 of 38 matches played)
- Manchester City, 92 points
- Liverpool, 91 points
Not only are these two sides only a point apart with two matches to play, Manchester City only owns a goal difference that is four better than that of Liverpool. Furthermore, a title race with two teams securing points in the nineties is nearly unheard of. That’s what proves this year could be something truly special. The firepower of Salah, Mane, and others has made Anfield a fortress, and Liverpool a juggernaut. Manchester City, as stacked with superstars as ever (Aguero, De Bruyne, Sane, I could go on…), have been very impressive lately as they look to defend their title. The only potential obstacle to this exciting finish could be a Liverpool slip-up caused by their continued involvement in the Champions League. Having already defeated City in the competition, Liverpool face a tough Barcelona team for a spot in the final. Will City be able to pull away while Liverpool juggle the league and Champions League?
By Jack Nichols