The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Saturday, July 26, 2014

Saturday, November 17, 2012
Sports

Barclays English Premier League

It's heating up

The battle for the Premier League title may be compelling, with three heavyweights in contention, but the fight to avoid relegation from English football's top-flight is nearly as fierce.

At the top, leaders Manchester United travel to Norwich on Saturday with a two-point advantage over champions Manchester City, at home to Aston Villa.

European champions Chelsea, a point further back in third, travel to surprise package West Brom, an impressive fifth in the table, in a match that pits Blues boss Roberto di Matteo and the Baggies Steve Clarke, once an assistant manager at Stamford Bridge, against their former clubs.

In an era where Premier League players are routinely criticised for being primarily concerned with their pay packets, United veteran Rio Ferdinand said the lure of silverware remained as strong as ever.

"It doesn't matter how much money you have, at the end of your career, what you will be most proud of are your achievements," said Ferdinand.

"If you have won things and continue to win things for this great club, that is something to talk about. I wouldn't sit down and talk about how much money I have."

It was a point echoed by City winger James Milner, who said: "Our fans turn out in big numbers.

"They were here when we weren't winning things for so many years so it's nice that we are now and as I say, that's not a feeling we could ever get tired of," the England international added.

There will be plenty of attention at Eastlands on City and England goalkeeper Joe Hart, beaten on four occasions by striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic during Sweden's 4-0 friendly international win in midweek, with the striker's stunning scissor-kick fourth set to become a staple of all great goal compilations.

But there will be a different sort of grim fascination in watching bottom of the table QPR welcome second-bottom Southampton to Loftus Road as both clubs battle to remain in the lucrative top flight.

West London club QPR have yet to win in 11 Premier League matches this seasn while Southampton have just one victory to show for their efforts since ending seven years' of Premier League exile.

The North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham sees both clubs battling to get back into the four while Everton will look to maintain their place among the leading quartet at home to strugglers Reading.

FIXTURES
(1500GMT unless stated)

Saturday
Arsenal v Tottenham (1245GMT), Liverpool v Wigan, Manchester City v Aston Villa, Newcastle v Swansea, Norwich v Manchester United (1730GMT), QPR v Southampton, Reading v Everton, West Brom v Chelsea

Sunday
Fulham v Sunderland (1600GMT)

Monday
West Ham v Stoke (2000GMT)

Share on



 






 

 


advertisement

 


The Daily Star

© thedailystar.net, 1991-2014. All Rights Reserved