For the first time in the history of English football’s top flight, three clubs remain unbeaten 12 games into a season.
Premier League holders Manchester City currently lead the way at the top of the table with 32 points (W10 D2), while Liverpool (30 points, W9 D3) and Chelsea (28 points, W8 D4) have put themselves in serious title contention after impressive starts to the campaign.
Pep Guardiola’s ‘Centurions’ are still the bookmakers’ favourites to win the title for the second year in a row, but how likely are they to keep hold of top spot heading into the busy festive schedule?
Let’s take a look at who City, Liverpool and Chelsea play in their next five games to find out which team stands the best chance of keeping their unbeaten run alive before Christmas…
Manchester City fixtures – Nov 24: West Ham (A), Dec 1: Bournemouth (H), Dec 4: Watford (A), Dec 8: Chelsea (A), Dec 15: Everton (H)
On paper, this looks like a relatively tough set of games for a Premier League team — but City are no ordinary Premier League team. They were unbeaten in all five of these fixtures in 2017-18, winning four and drawing one, and they even put four past West Ham at the London Stadium and six past Watford at Vicarage Road.
The most difficult fixture will come on December 8 when they visit a Chelsea side who have looked very impressive under Maurizio Sarri this season.
Liverpool fixtures – Nov 24: Watford (A), Dec 2: Everton (H), Dec 5: Burnley (A), Dec 8: Bournemouth (A), Dec 16: Manchester United (H)
Like Manchester City, Liverpool’s next five games come against teams who they were unbeaten against in the same fixture last season.
Still, this is certainly not an easy run of games for Jurgen Klopp’s side. Watford, Burnley and Bournemouth are capable of snatching points against the ‘Big Six’ clubs at home, while form and unbeaten records will be largely irrelevant for the Anfield fixtures against Everton and Manchester United.
Chelsea fixtures – Nov 24: Tottenham (A), Dec 2: Fulham (H), Dec 5: Wolves (A), Dec 8: Manchester City (H), Dec 16: Brighton (A)
The Blues didn’t fare too badly in three of these fixtures last season (Fulham and Wolves were in the Championship), winning 2-1 at Tottenham and 4-0 at Brighton, but they were defeated 1-0 when they hosted Manchester City early on in the campaign.
With two matches coming up against fellow title rivals, this is a huge month for Sarri’s men.
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