What. A. Run-in.
The Premier League is so often touted as ‘the best league in the world’ or ‘the most exciting league in the world’, thanks to Sky Sports’ saturation of football on these isles.
While it is fantastic, due to its unpredictability and for the anyone-can-beat-anyone-on-a-given-day factor, the past three seasons or so have been damp squibs in terms of last day drama at the top end of the table.
Chelsea have had the league wrapped up from a long way out. Spurs merely applied a bit of pressure. So if you are looking for a bit of drama from this coming weekend’s round of football, England may not be your best bet.
Enter the French Ligue 2.
With one round of matches left to play on Friday night, six teams are still in with a very realistic shout of winning the league.
Compare that with the Premier League table, where sixth-placed Manchester United are a mere 24 points off Chelsea in first place.
Have a look at the extremely tight top six below.
A win for sixth place Nimes, away to bottom club Laval on Friday night, coupled with losses for Strasbourg, Amiens, Troyes, Lens and Brest would see the unlikeliest of title triumphs occur.
The title is not the only prize on offer though. The top two clubs are promoted to Ligue 1, while the third-placed team plays off against the club that finishes 18th in Ligue 1. Talk about drama…
Calculators at the ready, let’s work this out.
Here are the ways by which the top six clubs can win the league.
- Strasbourg have the title in their hands, as they just have to match the best result achieved by the five clubs below them in order to win the title.
- If Amiens win and Strasbourg draw or lose they are champions. Amiens can also be champions if Strasbourg lose and they draw, while no club below them win.
- Troyes have to win (because of goal difference) and both Strasbourg and Amiens have to draw or lose in order for them to win the title.
- Lens can lift the title if they win and the three clubs above them lose or draw.
- Brest must win, need Strasbourg to lose and the other three clubs to lose or draw, in order to claim the title.
- Nimes must hope the teams above them lose in order for them to stand a chance.
So if you want to see former Spurs youth, and Football Manager whizz-kid, John Bostock attempt to power RC Lens to glory, tune in Friday night.
It promises to be fun.
Noel Ryan, Pundit Arena