What If: Premier League Gameweek 30

Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, there is sadly no high level sport on at the moment. So I’m starting a series across multiple sports called What if. The What If series will cover what I believe would’ve happened across multiple sports if they hadn’t have been suspended due to the coronavirus. This series will cover the Premier League gameweeks that won’t be played until the summer at the earliest.

Manchester City vs Arsenal

What would have happened:

I’d have expected City to bounce back here after a poor performance against Manchester United. Arsenal were fortunate winners against West Ham 3 days before this game was due to be played and Man City would be far more comfortable at home than away. I’d have expected Arsenal to score though with Laporte struggling with a hamstring injury. 

Man City 3-1 Arsenal

Watford vs Leicester City

What would have happened:

This would’ve had the potential to be a very interesting game. Vardy was finally back in the scoring habit having had a very easy time of things against a poor Aston Villa side but Watford’s last home game was their best performance of the season in beating Liverpool. I’d have been backing Leicester here, their away form was shaky but with Vardy back in the scoring habit and the defence remaining solid I’d have said they’d win a close one.

Watford 1-2 Leicester

Bournemouth vs Crystal Palace

What would have happened:

This would’ve been a huge game for Bournemouth. It would also have been a much different dynamic to their previous 2 games where they’d only seen 26% of the ball each time but had been creating good chances on the counter. They’d have needed their playmakers to have good days here since Palace had been extremely solid at the back in their previous 3 games. I’d have been leaning towards a draw here, I just don’t have the confidence that Bournemouth would’ve been able to score more than 1 here and with a somewhat leaky defence I’d have given Palace a good chance of scoring.

Bournemouth 1-1 Palace

Brighton and Hove Albion vs Arsenal

What would have happened:

Brighton had been sliding down the table before the suspension of the season due to dropping points in a lot of games they easily could’ve won. They had been due to thrash someone and Arsenal really struggled to stop Brighton in their matchup at the Emirates. My concern for them would’ve been their inability to keep clean sheets at home and that Arsenal had become very proficient at drawing games away from home. I could’ve seen an entertaining 2-2 here that may have been seen as the end of Arsenal’s top 4 challenge.

Brighton 2-2 Arsenal

Manchester City vs Burnley

What would have happened:

I’d been really disappointed in how Burnley had approached their previous away game at Newcastle and if putting in a similar performance here, I’d have expected them to be outclassed here and for City to win by a big margin. Aguero, Sterling and De Bruyne would’ve had field days in my eyes and this would’ve been the most comfortable win of the weekend.

Man City 4-0 Burnley

Newcastle United vs Sheffield United

What would have happened:

This would’ve been a low scoring game in my eyes. Both teams had been solid at the back as of late. Sheffield United should’ve beaten Norwich by a bigger margin than they did in their previous start though did have Henderson to thank big time for keeping a clean sheet. Newcastle meanwhile eventually took advantage of playing 10 men for the majority of their match against Southampton but weren’t convincing at all. I wouldn’t have been surprised by any of the 3 potential outcomes but with big concerns about Newcastle going forward and with Sheffield United finding ways to win games I’d go for them to win 1-0.

Newcastle 0-1 Sheffield United

Norwich City vs Southampton

What would have happened:

I’d have strongly fancied Norwich to pick up the 3 points here. Losing Djenepo would’ve nulled Southampton a bit going forward and having conceded 7 in their previous 2 away games, I wouldn’t have fancied them to stop a Norwich attack that is very strong at home. Norwich also seem to defend far better at home having only conceded once in their previous 3 home games heading into this one. I’d have gone for a 3-1 Norwich win here.

Norwich 3-1 Southampton

Aston Villa vs Chelsea

What would have happened:

Villa were in shambolic form heading into this and with Chelsea being a far better team away from home than at home they’d have been a confident pick to win here. They would’ve been unlikely to have 1 eye on the Bayern game in the midweek after this as they were pretty much certain to go out and the top 4 scrap was really starting to heat up. With those factors in play I’d have thought Chelsea would’ve come out and dominated this one and further piled the pressure on Villa here.

Aston Villa 1-3 Chelsea

West Ham United vs Wolverhampton Wanderers

What would have happened:

I’d have fancied a West Ham upset win here. Wolves have been trailing in too many games away from home to not get caught out at some point and I feel they’d have been caught up looking ahead to the Olympiacos game with a quarter final place in play. West Ham meanwhile were really unlucky to lose at Arsenal and had been in fine scoring form at home to Southampton in the previous game. I would’ve predicted them getting an early 2-0 lead and just holding on.

West Ham 2-1 Wolves

Tottenham vs Manchester United

What would have happened:

This on paper would’ve looked like a case of 2 teams going in opposite directions and United would’ve been a very popular pick to win this one. But this Mourinho led Spurs side had played the bigger Premier League teams during his tenure with 2 of their better performances being against Manchester City and Liverpool. I doubt they’d have had the firepower to win this game but I could’ve seen them getting a 1-1 draw in a game United would see a lot of the ball in.

Tottenham 1-1 Manchester United

Everton vs Liverpool

What would have happened:

In this scenario City would’ve taken care of business in both of their games before this so Liverpool wouldn’t have been in the situation of “win this game and the title is theirs”. This would give it a little less weight than it could’ve possibly had, but both teams would still be giving this game their full attention. It seems like Allison wouldn’t have been fit for this one so Adrian would’ve been in goal which would’ve given Everton an advantage heading into this. The Goodison atmosphere would also have helped and this would’ve been one of the biggest tasks of the season for Liverpool, but they are the better team and Everton were coming off their worst performance of the season. With the league being the last remaining priority for Liverpool, I feel they’d have managed to find a way to overcome the atmosphere and just win this game.

Everton 1-2 Liverpool

The table after Gameweek 29:


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