Premier League title race: Who has the toughest run-in?
By Nick Wright
Last Updated: 16/02/16 9:18am
Leicester City's lead at the top of the table was cut to two points on Super Sunday as Arsenal and Tottenham blew the Premier League title race wide open.
Just six points now separate the top four with 12 games of the season to play. So can the Foxes hold on? Will the title be heading to north London? Or will Manchester City sneak back into contention?
Premier League table
As the race begins to heat up, we examine each side's remaining fixtures for a clearer picture of who has the toughest run-in…
Top four remaining fixtures
|Norwich (h)||Swansea (h)||Man Utd (a)||Newcastle (a)|
|West Brom (h)||West Ham (a)||Swansea (h)||Liverpool (a)|
|Watford (a)||Arsenal (h)||Tottenham (a)||Aston Villa (h)|
|Newcastle (h)||Aston Villa (a)||West Brom (h)||Norwich (a)|
|Crystal Palace (a)||Bournemouth (h)||Everton (a)||Man Utd (h)|
|Southampton (h)||Liverpool (a)||Watford (h)||Bournemouth (a)|
|Sunderland (a)||Man Utd (h)||West Ham (a)||West Brom (h)|
|West Ham (h)||Stoke (a)||Crystal Palace (h)||Chelsea (a)|
|Swansea (h)||West Brom (h)||Sunderland (a)||Stoke (h)|
|Man Utd (a)||Chelsea (a)||Norwich (h)||Southampton (a)|
|Everton (h)||Southampton (h)||Man City (a)||Arsenal (h)|
|Chelsea (a)||Newcastle (a)||Aston Villa (h)||Swansea (a)|
Leicester don't have any remaining fixtures against their top four rivals, but when it comes to crunch time, their final three games are the hardest of the lot. If they haven't already wrapped up the title by then, the Foxes will need to take points from trips to Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge and a home clash against Everton.
Title race in numbers
We pick out the statistics behind the title race as the top four battle for Premier League glory.
Arsenal, by contrast, have home games against relegation-battlers Norwich and Aston Villa either side of their trip to the Etihad Stadium. City's final three games include away clashes at Southampton and Swansea, while Spurs also play two of their final three on the road, with trips to Chelsea and Newcastle sandwiching their home clash with Southampton.
Average position of remaining opponents
Leicester, though, can take encouragement from the rest of their fixture list. The average position of their remaining opponents is 12.3, while Tottenham's is 11.2, Arsenal's is 11.4 and City's is 12.0.
Leicester hold another potentially crucial advantage over the rest of the top four: they have just 12 games left to concentrate on this season. The Foxes are already out of the domestic cups and have no European commitments, and Claudio Ranieri has just had the luxury of giving his players a week off in the wake of their 2-1 defeat by Arsenal.
In contrast, Tottenham could have as many as 27 games still to play this season when factoring in two-legged Europa League ties and possible FA Cup replays. City's Capital One Cup, FA Cup and Champions League commitments could see them play 26 games, while Arsenal's total could stretch to 25 as they chase European glory and a third consecutive FA Cup.
Potential number of fixtures remaining in all competitions
In conclusion, the title race is poised to be nail-bitingly close. Current Premier League standings suggest Leicester's remaining games are the easiest, and the Foxes also have room to rest his players as their rivals contend with packed fixture schedules.
Can Spurs do it?
Tottenham proved they are serious title contenders with their win over Manchester City.
But if it's still open when they reach the final three games of the season, Leicester's trips to Manchester United and Chelsea could prove decisive, and Arsenal are the only team with two home fixtures out of the three.
Who do you think has the toughest run-in? Leave a comment below or tweet us @SkyFootball.