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Arsenal And Chelsea May Be Forced To Play Third-Place Play-Off Decider – Here’s How…

Arsenal beat Wigan 4-1 to reclaim fourth and set up the possibility that they may face Chelsea in a play-off for who finishes third. Here’s how it could happen

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Arsenal reclaimed fourth place in the Premier League table on Tuesday night after a 4-1 win over Wigan Athletic saw them leapfrog north London rivals Tottenham back into the top-four.

The win not only put Arsene Wenger’s men back in the driving seat for fourth spot but it also set up the possibility that Arsenal and Chelsea may be forced into a play-off for who finishes third!

After last nights game, Chelsea now sit third on 72 points with a +35 goal difference while Arsenal are fourth on 70 points with a +34 goal difference. Should Rafa Benitez men draw 0-0 at home to Everton and Arsenal beat Newcastle 2-1 at St James’ Park on the final day of the season, both teams would finish on 73 points with +35 goal difference and they would also have scored the same number of goals (73).

In this exact scenario, the two London clubs would be forced to play a one-off game at a neutral venue to decide who finishes third and with it, automatically qualify for the Champions League. The loser would finish fourth and have to play a two-legged play-off in August to qualify for the group stages.

The Premier League confirmed on Tuesday night that the teams head-to-head record (Chelsea winning both home and away against Arsenal) this season doesn’t come in to effect, and it would be a play-off that would decide it should the unprecedented events occur.

While the scenario is highly unlikely to come to fruition, it is still a possibility, and if it does happen it will cause a complicated situation over when the crucial play-off game would take place.

Chelsea fly straight to the United States after Sunday’s match to play Man City in two friendlies on May 23rd and 25th before England play two friendlies against the ROI and Brazil on May 29th and June 2nd, so it leaves very little time for the play-off to be scheduled.

While it’s geared up to be an exciting final day in the fight for the top-four, the possibility of a third-placed play-off has added that little bit extra spice to the occasion.

How do you think the top four will look after Sunday’s games? Get involved in the comments section below.



  1. Dominic

    May 15, 2013 at 9:36 am

    Unlikely as it is, the same scenarion applies if Chelsea lose 8-0 to Everton and Spurs beat Sunderland 8-0.

    • Kunlag

      May 15, 2013 at 10:33 am

      How can Everton win Chelsea with 8 goals marging? Do your analysis correctly.

  2. FinnTheHuman

    May 15, 2013 at 9:55 am

    This is unlikely, since the UEFA coefficient will be applied to differentiate the two teams. Chelsea have played more matches than Arsenal due to their longer run in the Europa League.

  3. Patrick

    May 15, 2013 at 10:03 am

    It won’t happen because Newcastle will beat arsenal and spurs will beat Sunderland! COYS!!

  4. Njenga

    May 15, 2013 at 10:19 am

    Arsenal 4 ~ 0 Newcastle…

  5. dike

    May 15, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Mr Patrick I quit agreed with you because newcastle will defeat arsenal.

  6. donald

    May 15, 2013 at 10:33 am

    unlikely as Everton will beat a tired Chelsea n Arsenal will beat unform Newcastle.

  7. PETEY

    May 15, 2013 at 10:43 am

    Y will newcastle we beat gunner,wen arsenal need d point, it is impossible, iya na ma je, cos KOSOFO(no problem.)


    May 15, 2013 at 10:52 am

    I don’t think Chelsea and arsenal need to play playoff, what about hend to hend?

  9. henry ifi

    May 15, 2013 at 10:57 am

    Battle 4 decider, gonaz to beat newcastle 2 nill, spurs to win sunderland 3 nill, while chelsea will loose to everton 3 nill, chelsea out.

  10. Jez

    May 15, 2013 at 11:25 am

    I fancy arsenal to scrape a win at Newcastle but it will be squeaky bum time for us gooners as always. I think that Everton will beat Chelsea and Spurs will thrash a very out if sorts Sunderland. I can’t see any play offs occurring though.

  11. George

    May 15, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    Arsenal 4 – 2 Newcastle

  12. timo victor

    May 15, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Chelsea is a gud team, with gud combination now days. so we will not loose on last game,and we will directly win and secure top three. No discussion on that.

  13. Goonerbeall

    May 15, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Come on you gunners, why are you so easy to con? Why cant you be circumspect at this type of things. Are you not aware of existence of anti Arsenal brigade? There are everywhere, TV, Radio, Newspaper and blogs. They are trying to give you and I a false sense of security so that failure will hurt us even more.

    So do yourself a favour,its all or nothing against Newcasstle a team that is never easy to face at the best of times and its that attitude I want everyone of you to have until the last day of the season. We have only ourselves to blame or relie on because majority sympathise with our neighbours than us. Most of the ppl I spoke to have this feeling that we’ve been doing CL for ages without ever mounting a serious challenge to win it except once. This to them is a sign that we not worthy more chances. They say our nasty neighbours did once thrash one the Milan Team and forget what we did Inter and Real Madrid some years ago when they still had a Frenchman who ppl once called the god. We beat them home and away but that is all forgotten.

  14. Scott

    May 15, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    What is with all the spelling? Look lets be honest Chelsea will not lost 8-0 or whatever is getting branded around here, but who cares, the toon will get a draw, and Spurs will win! See you later gunners.

  15. noble frank

    May 15, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    remember chelsea a through no mata what happens, Arsenal better go and pray dat u wil win ur game, dat is the main thing, becos if u dare loose dat match and spurs win, haaa!! Am sorry there wil be no UCL for u guys next season, so u gys should start praying now oo to avoid crying. Up chelsea, goodluck in our finals today.

  16. charley4christ

    May 15, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    up Gunners God wil do it again bcos we dont hv power on our own God has ben d source of our finance & top 4 finish for d past consecutive sixteen yrs.God bles Gunners

  17. nakowa bk

    May 15, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    chelsea fc will beat wigan and arsenal will finish draw 2-2 no need of play-offcl chelsea fc is a G̶̲̥̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡.̮Ơ̴̴̴͡D̶̲̥̅ club

  18. Haykay

    May 15, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    Chelsea can never be defeated by Everton which i know of,and Arsenal should get this to their brain that chelsea has already qualified so you shld just focus on new castle which is not sure for you…..Up blues and all the best in our final tonight…!!!

  19. nakowa bk

    May 15, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    chelsea fc will beat Everton
    and arsenal will
    finish draw 2-2 no need of play-offcl
    chelsea fc is a G̶̲̥̅Ơ̴̴̴̴͡.̮Ơ̴̴̴͡D̶̲̥̅ club


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