Dramatic equalizer for Leeds doesn’t convince bookmakers who say you always go down

Leeds United’s last-gasp equalizer against Brighton on Sunday ensured the relegation battle would go down to the final game of the season, although it remains to be seen whether that will involve two or three teams.

After Burnley’s 1-0 loss to Tottenham early in the game, Leeds knew they would escape the bottom three if they could learn anything from their clash with the Seagulls.

It seemed unlikely as a clearly second-placed home side trailed until a 21st-minute goal from Danny Welbeck. However, Pascal Struijk’s dramatic stoppage-time equalizer saved a point for the Elland Road side and changed the complexion of the relegation battle.

Jesse Marsch’s side remain 4/6 favorites with Planet Sport Bet to join Norwich and Watford in the Championship next season, but know that if Burnley fail to salvage anything from their last two fixtures – at Aston Villa and at home in Newcastle – they will definitely make it safe.

A win for Leeds in their last game at Brentford would mean Burnley, who are 6/4 to lose, need to pick up at least four points from their last two games to guarantee survival.

Premier League – bottom

P O D L F A Points
16 Everton 36 ten 6 20 39 59 36
17 Leeds United 37 8 11 18 40 78 35
18 Burnley 36 7 13 16 32 50 34
19 watford 37 6 5 26 33 75 23
20 City of Norwich 37 5 7 25 23 79 22

Everton remain in the equation after seeing two players sent off as they let slip a 2-1 lead to lose 3-2 to Brentford.

Victory at home to Crystal Palace on Thursday night would see the Toffees secure and is reflected in the 7/1 they are on offer to go down.

Arsenal then wait but even if they lost their last two matches, they would still need Leeds to beat Brentford on the final day and Burnley to pick up two points from their last two matches to condemn them to the downfall.

For rivals Everton, the good news is that Arsenal should have plenty of motivation going into the final day, with Tottenham’s narrow victory over the Clarets having increased the pressure in the hunt for a top four finish.

Arsenal now trail Spurs, in the bottom Champions League spot, by two points after playing one game less. They can reclaim fourth place on Monday night with a win over Newcastle.

But with the momentum apparently with Antonio Conte’s side, they saw their top-four odds drift to 21/20 after being odds last week. The Spurs, who end their campaign with a trip to Norwich, are at 3/4.

It was almost a dream weekend for Liverpool who lifted a second trophy of the season by beating Chelsea on penalties in the FA Cup and then saw Manchester City fall 2-0 to West Ham on Sunday. That wasn’t quite the case, with Pep Guardiola’s side fighting back to draw 2-2.

However, it offered the Reds a burst of light ahead of their game against Southampton on Tuesday night. A burst of light that still has them 6/1 to claim the title.

Premier League table – top

P O D L F A Points
1 Manchester City 37 28 6 3 96 24 90
2 liverpool 36 26 8 2 89 24 86
3 chelsea 36 20 ten 6 73 31 70
4 Tottenham Hotspur 37 21 5 11 64 40 68
5 Arsenal 36 21 3 12 56 45 66
6 Manchester United 37 16 ten 11 57 56 58
7 West Ham United 37 16 8 13 59 48 56

Nonetheless, they know that if they beat Saints they will trail City by just one point ahead of their final day clash at home to Wolves (Man City entertain Aston Villa).

And, with Manchester United and West Ham still battling for a top-six place, that could mean there’s something to be done in eight of the ten matches on the final day.

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Edward L. Robinett