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Frayed nerves as Everton, Leeds and Leicester face relegation

Everton boss Sean Dyche knows his side will be safe with win against Bournemouth on final day

It’s the final weekend of the season and all eyes will be on the fight for Premier League survival. Everton hold the upper hand, two points clear of Leeds and Leicester.

Fantasy managers must now make one final assault to become champion and it is all to play for in the RG Fantasy League heading into the final day.

Jordan E and his team, Oh My Ghoddos, leads the overall standings with 2,523 points, while Keishon Bean and Lambdinho’s XI lead the monthly table with 261 points.

The overall winner will receive a cash prize of $1,000, second place $500, and third place $200. The end-of-season presentation will take place at The Royal Gazette office next week.

Bournemouth forward Dominic Solanke, Tottenham striker Harry Kane and Leicester winger Harvey Barnes are all decent Fantasy suggestions amid this intriguing relegation battle.


All matches kick off at 12.30pm

Arsenal v Wolverhampton Wanderers

Arsenal look to finish the season on a high after going on a run of just two wins in their last eight games.

Takehiro Tomiyasu, William Saliba, Oleksandr Zinchenko, Mohamed Elneny and Gabriel Martinelli are out to injury on the final day, while Reiss Nelson is ill.

Wolverhampton Wanderers confirmed safety with the home win over West Midlands neighbours Aston Villa earlier this month. Francisco Oliveira and Sasa Kalajdzic are out with knee injuries this weekend.

The Gunners have won 11 of their 17 encounters with Wolves.

Prediction: 2-0

Aston Villa v Brighton & Hove Albion

Aston Villa are still in the hunt to make European football for the first time since 2011, and need one more win to secure qualification to the Europa Conference League.

Philippe Coutinho is out with an unknown injury, while Alex Moreno, Callum Chambers and Diego Carlos are doubtful this match.

Brighton have qualified for the Europa League for the first time in club history and will finish with their highest top-flight points total. Tariq Lamptey, Adam Lallana, Jakub Moder and Jeremy Sarmiento are out this weekend, while Solly March and Adam Webster are doubtful.

Villa have won four of the seven meetings with the Seagulls, with Brighton winning just once.

Prediction: 2-2

Brentford v Manchester City

Brentford have exceeded expectations in their second Premier League campaign, with many anticipating the Bees to finish in the bottom half this season.

Pontus Jansson, Christian Norgaard and Keane Lewis-Potter are out to injury, while Ivan Toney is suspended for breaching betting rules.

Manchester City clinched their third straight league title last weekend, becoming the second club to complete the feat after neighbours United, who have done it twice. Nathan Ake is doubtful for this match with a hamstring injury.

City edge this rivalry, winning two of their three meetings with Brentford, although the West London side went to the Etihad just before the World Cup and took three points.

Prediction: 2-2

Chelsea v Newcastle United

Chelsea have endured one of their worst top-flight seasons and will finish in the bottom half for the first time since 1995-96.

Armando Broja is out with a knee injury this week, while Marcus Bettinelli, Marc Cucurella, Ben Chilwell, Reece James, Benoit Badiashile, N’Golo Kante, Mason Mount and Mateo Kovacic are doubtful with various injuries.

Newcastle are back in the Champions League next season after their goalless home draw with Leicester. Matt Ritchie, Jamaal Lascelles and Emil Krafth will be out through injury, while Joe Willock and Joelinton are doubtful with hamstring and muscle injuries.

The Blues have won 29 of their 55 battles with Newcastle.

Prediction: 1-2

Crystal Palace v Nottingham Forest

Crystal Palace have taken 17 points from their nine games under Roy Hodgson to keep themselves in the top flight for a tenth-straight season. James Tomkins, Nathan Ferguson, Luka Milivojevic and Wilfried Zaha are out to injury, while Jeffrey Schlupp is out with personal challenges.

Nottingham Forest edged Arsenal to pull clear of the relegation scrap. Dean Henderson, Neco Williams, Scott McKenna, Giulian Biancone and Omar Richards are out to injury, while Jack Colback, Gustavo Scarpa, Keylor Navas, Jesse Lingard and Danilo are doubtful.

Forest are unbeaten against Palace through five meetings, winning three of those.

Prediction: 1-1

Everton v Bournemouth

Everton need only to avoid defeat on Sunday to keep their status as a Premier League club.

Seamus Coleman, Ben Godfrey, Ruben Vinagre and Andros Townsend are out to injury and lack of fitness, whereas Tom Davies, Vitaly Mykolenko, Nathan Patterson and Dominic Calvert-Lewin are doubtful.

Bournemouth secured safety with victories over relegation rivals Southampton and Leeds last month. Ryan Fredericks, Junior Stanislas, Marcus Tavernier, Hamed Traore and Antoine Semenyo are out through injury, while Philip Billing and Joe Rothwell are doubtful.

The Cherries edge this series with five wins to Everton’s four through 11 match0ups.

Prediction: 1-2

Leeds United v Tottenham Hotspur

Leeds United need to win and hope Leicester and Everton lose in order to maintain their top-flight status.

Stuart Dallas, Tyler Adams and Luis Sinisterra are out through injury this weekend, while Rodrigo Moreno and Patrick Bamford are doubtful for the Yorkshire side.

Tottenham must win at Elland Road to stand any chance of making the Conference League next term in what is surely the last match under caretaker coach Ryan Mason. Hugo Lloris, Ryan Sessegnon and Rodrigo Bentancur are out injured for this important game, while Cristian Romero and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg are doubtful.

Spurs edge this rivalry with 12 wins to Leeds’s 11 through 29 meetings.

Prediction: 2-1

Leicester City v West Ham United

Leicester City must win and hope Everton lose if they are to avoid relegation. Jannik Vestergaard, Caglar Soyuncu, James Justin and Sammy Braybrooke are out for the Foxes, while Danny Ward, Ryan Bertrand, Ricardo Pereira, Wilfried Ndidi and Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall are doubtful to injury or lack of fitness.

West Ham made sure they would enjoy another season of Premier League football with a couple of home successes recently.

Gianluca Scamacca is out with a knee injury for the Hammers’ final domestic game of the season, while Nayef Aguerd is doubtful with a knock.

The Hammers lead this series with 14 wins to Leicester’s 10 through 31 meetings.

Prediction: 1-1

Manchester United v Fulham

Manchester United could sew up their Champions League qualification with at least a point against Chelsea in midweek. Lisandro Martinez, Donny van de Beek and Marcel Sabitzer are out for this season finale, while Marcus Rashford is set to return from illness.

Fulham have taken seven points from their previous three games to close the campaign with a respectable tenth-place finish. Tim Ream and Andreas Pereira are out with arm and ankle injuries, while Dan James is doubtful owing to lack of fitness.

United dominate this head-to-head, winning 22 of the 31 top-flight meetings between the sides.

Prediction: 2-0

Southampton v Liverpool

Southampton have endured a dreadgul campaign with relegation confirmed earlier this month after the away defeat to Nottingham Forest.

Romain Perraud, Mohamed Salisu, Armel Bella-Kotchap and Juan Larios Lopez are out for this final top-flight game, while Che Adams is doubtful to a calf injury.

Liverpool will miss out on Champions League qualification for the first time under Jurgen Klopp. Calvin Ramsay, Thiago Alcantara, Naby Keita, Stefan Bajcetic and Darwin Nunez are out to various injuries this weekend.

Liverpool have won 26 of 47 league meetings with Saints.

Prediction: 0-3

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Published May 26, 2023 at 8:00 am (Updated May 25, 2023 at 12:17 pm)

Frayed nerves as Everton, Leeds and Leicester face relegation

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