Manchester United have one hand on the title as we come down to the business end of the season 2

The English Premier League is back after the international break and the fight for the remaining Champions League spots and the battle to avoid relegation is coming down to the wire.

Manchester United celebrate a Premiership title

Manchester United celebrate a Premiership title

The league leaders Manchester United have a 15 point lead over second place Manchester City, and it appears that they have one hand on the trophy. With less than 9 games to go, it’s only a matter of time before United seal their incredible 13th Premier League title.

This week United square off against a Sunderland side that are struggling to get results. Sunderland come in having only picked up 2 points from their last 3 games and run the risk of being dragged down into the relegation fight.

Reigning champions Manchester City meet Newcastle United, with little more than pride and a Champions league spot to play for. City manager Roberto Mancini conceded the title after hid sides lost to Everton, will consider this season a failure after failing to reach the same heights as they reached last year when winning the title. For Newcastle, they were 2-1 losers to Wigan last time out, but no need to push the panic button as their recent run of good results have left them safe in mid table.

Arsenal and Arsene Wenger have somehow turned it around in the last month and look likely of getting some joy from what looked like a miserable season. They sit 1 point behind Spurs, but have a game in hand. The 5th place Gunners host manager less Reading in their pursuit for a top 4 spot. Arsenal are in a good vein of form at the moment, and on paper they should get the result.

For Spurs, things are a little tougher as they travel to Wales to play a slick passing Swansea City. Every game counts for Spurs in the run in and they can’t afford to drop any points. Swansea have had a fantastic season and seemed to have confirmed themselves as a legitimate premiership team in their 2nd season. The game will be a difficult one for Spurs, who desperately need a win to hold off Arsenal and maintain their champions league ambitions.

The other Champions league hopeful Chelsea meet strugglers Southampton in a top vs bottom clash. Chelsea are currently in 3rd place, and despite all the turmoil surrounding “interim” manager Rafael Benitez, they are playing well and getting results with the veteran Frank Lampard leading the charge.

Wigan currently 3rd from bottom, knee deep in the relegation zone, face a Norwich City side that are relatively safe in mid table. Wigan come in off a good win last time out over Newcastle and also have a game in handover rivals Aston Villa. The odds of them staying up look bleak, but I wouldn’t bet against them as other teams are getting drawn into the fray.

Aston Villa have it all to play as they go into their game against Liverpool after a big win over fellow strugglers QPR. The win lifted Villa out of the drop zone, but they are still not free of relegation yet. Villa stand a good chance of picking up 3 points as they have the chance to do the double over a Liverpool struggling for consistency.

It’s all getting tight as we come down to business end of the season as their are champions league places to win and premiership places to lose.