Heartbreaking defeats, incredible comebacks, euphoric last-minute title wins and dodgy lasagne. You couldn’t write the script!
Premier League: the final day, Sunday 13 May, 2pm, Sky Sports Premier League/HD (CH 512/502) and Sky Sports Main Event/HD (CH 511/501)
From the magnificence of Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City to the goalscoring exploits of Liverpool’s Mo Salah via the consistent excellence of Burnley under Sean Dyche, it has been a sensational Premier League season.
And the great news is, it’s not over yet. There is still one round of fixtures to go, which means Manchester City fans have 90 more minutes to sing, “We’re gonna win the league”, Arsenal supporters have two more halves to croon, “One Arsène Wenger” and Sky Sports viewers have one more opportunity to enjoy the 2017-18 season of the greatest league in the world, at home or on the go with the Sky Sports app.
We can’t tell you how the final day of this Premier League campaign is going to pan out, but we can tell you to expect cheers, tears, loads of goals (last season’s ten final-day fixtures featured a staggering 37 strikes) and the unexpected. After all, who could have predicted any of these final-day fireworks?
Manchester City went into the final game of the 2011/12 season knowing that victory over QPR would secure their first Premier League title, but anything less would allow local rivals Manchester United to steal the crown. After 91 minutes, City trailed QPR 2-1. With United beating Sunderland, the Sky Blues needed a miracle. Edin Džeko’s 92nd-minute equaliser gave them hope, and then it happened. Argentine striker Sergio Agüero gained possession, rounded a defender and hammered the ball in the net, while City fans went ballistic and Sky Sports’ Martin Tyler screamed, “Agüerooooooooooo!”
2. The Toffees get out of a sticky situation
And the award for Greatest Final-Day Escape goes to… Everton. After 20 minutes of their last game of the 1993/94 season, the Toffees were 2-0 down against Wimbledon and staring relegation in the face. A Graham Stuart penalty got them on the scoresheet, a Barry Horne screamer drew them level and then, with the whole of Goodison Park on the edge of their seats, Stuart’s second goal fired them into the lead. Cue pandemonium. Everton jumped from 20th to 17th and Sheffield United went down alongside Swindon Town and Oldham Athletic.
3. A five-way survival scrap
With one game to go in the 2010/11 Premier League season, Birmingham City, Blackpool, Blackburn Rovers, Wigan Athletic and Wolverhampton Wanderers were fighting to avoid the final two relegation places. Wigan ensured their survival with a 1-0 win at Stoke, and Blackburn guaranteed their Premier League future with a 3-2 win at Wolves. This defeat left Wolves in a perilous position. If either Birmingham or Blackpool could grab three points, they would stay up and the Wanderers would be relegated. Blackpool rocked Manchester United in the early stages and Birmingham tested Tottenham to the limit but, in the end, neither could get the job done.
4. The dodgy lasagne
In 2005/06, the battle for fourth place came down to the final day. If Tottenham beat West Ham, they would secure that much-coveted UEFA Champions League qualification spot. Spurs’ squad trained hard all week… and then ten of the team became violently ill in their hotel the night before the match. A lasagne was blamed but whatever the true cause, by the time kick-off rolled around on Sunday, Spurs were officially shattered. They battled bravely, but a 2-1 loss combined with Arsenal’s 4-2 victory over Wigan meant that their Champions League dream would have to wait.
5. Blackburn lose, but still win
Back in 1994/95, Blackburn Rovers knew that a final-day victory at Liverpool would secure the Premier League title. But they didn’t win, or even draw. They lost 2-1, which meant Manchester United could nab the title if they beat West Ham. With the match tied at 1-1, the Red Devils laid siege to the Hammers’ goal. If they had taken even one of their chances, they’d have won the game and the title, but they didn’t. West Ham held on, and Blackburn won the league for the first time in 81 years.
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