Liverpool have taken the Premier League title race to the final day but the BBC’s pundits did not fancy the Reds at the start of the season, when Chelsea were heavily backed
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Since the turn of the year, Liverpool have been the most in-form Premier League team.
The Reds have not lost a league game since December 28 – a 1-0 defeat by Leicester City at the King Power Stadium. Jurgen Klopp’s side have gone on to win 14 of their last 17 top-flight matches, dropping just six points in the process.
After Liverpool’s 2-2 draw at Chelsea on January 2, the Reds sat a mammoth 11 points behind leaders Manchester City with 18 games to play. Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane were heading off to the Africa Cup of Nations, leaving the Anfield light up front and in danger of being cut adrift in pursuit of their second title in three seasons.
At the time, the vast majority of pundits thought the title would be going to the Etihad Stadium yet again. Liverpool, tough, have put together an exceptional run of results to take them within a point of their rivals and set up a thrilling final day of the season. But it seems certain former footballers did not rate Liverpool’s chances of winning the league as far back as August, at the start of the season, with not a single BBC pundit backing them to win the league.
Former England international Rob Green was the only one to select the Reds in his top two as he tipped Chelsea to win the title with City in third. With two games left to play, the Blues sit 19 points behind Liverpool in the table despite being above them going into the new year.
On the back of their Champions League triumph, Chelsea were backed by a total of seven BBC experts. Alan Shearer, Fara Williams, Sue Smith, Chris Sutton, Rachael Brown-Finnis and Matt Upson all thought Thomas Tuchel’s side would claim their first domestic triumph since 2017. Instead, the Blues are third and have just confirmed their place in next season’s Champions League .
However, the uncertainty surrounding the club’s takeover and future may have had an impact on some performances and results throughout the back-end of the season; Chelsea have won just two of their last six matches.
Will Liverpool win the Premier League this season? Let us know in the comments below!
|Chelsea||Man City||Man Utd|
|Fara Williams||Chelsea||Man City||Man Utd|
|Sue Smith||Chelsea||Man City||Man Utd|
|Chris Sutton||Chelsea||Man City||Liverpool|
|Rachel Brown-Finnis||Chelsea||Man City||Liverpool|
|Matthew Upson||Chelsea||Man City||Liverpool|
|Rob Green||Chelsea||Liverpool||Man City|
|Martin Keown||Man City||Chelsea||Liverpool|
|Micah Richards||Man City||Chelsea||Liverpool|
|Stephen Warnock||Man City||Chelsea||
Interestingly, the other three pundits had the Blues to finish second. None predicted a Liverpool and Man City top two in any order. Martin Keown, Micah Richards and Stephen Warnock all tipped Pep Guardiola’s side to win the title, with Chelsea second and Liverpool in third.
City have one hand on the Premier League trophy and require victory over Aston Villa on the final day of the campaign to confirm their status as champions. However, Liverpool will be ready to pounce on any slip-up when they face Wolves at Anfield on Sunday.