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March Madness with a Twist: Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea, Newcastle and Liverpool

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March Madness with a Twist: Spurs, Arsenal, Chelsea, Newcastle and Liverpool
Ben Radford/Getty Images
When 'Arry met Arsene

A week is a long time in football.

If we rewind to just before the last weekend of games (25 and 26 February), Spurs were title-chasers, Arsenal's season was in tatters, Chelsea had a manager, Liverpool were chasing glory and Newcastle were there and thereabouts.

Fast forward to Sunday, 4 March, and Arsenal are favourites for third, Spurs might struggle to stay in the top four, Liverpool have a trophy but may not get to compete for the "big one" next season and Chelsea have lost the plot and their manager. Oh, and Newcastle are still there and thereabouts. Some things never change!

Each of these clubs (barring Liverpool) has played 27 games. The next five will probably determine where they finish come season-end. Fourth place is indeed the holy grail, but for clubs like Arsenal and Tottenham, a guaranteed place in next season's Champions League main draw will change the way they do business in the summer. 

Coming to Chelsea, not qualifying for the Champions League at all may finally make Roman lose interest. And who knows what the repercussions could be?

Newcastle and Liverpool are in a somewhat similar state of limbo. Finishing outside the top four will mean more of the same next season (although Senor Suarez might seek greener pastures—oh, joy!), but a Champions League place would give either club a massive lift.

Both clubs have fantastic fans, and if I were to put my neutral hat on, I would wish them all success. The sight of Mikel Arteta (a former Toffee) getting a standing ovation from the Kop as he was carried off on Saturday gave me goosebumps, and the memory will remain with me for ever.

Back to the business at hand, though. 

As I was saying, the month of March will be key in determining how the table looks at season-end. Here's a look at the next five fixtures (six for Liverpool) for each team, with predicted results, and a look at my projected Premier League table (third to seventh place) come early April.

 

Follow me on Twitter @ratanpostwalla

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