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Prem title race

Leicester, Tottenham, Arsenal? Who is most likely to win the Premier League… and who’ll face dreaded drop?

THE Premier League title debate has been firing on all cylinders in the past few weeks... months even.

It’s been a riveting ride from the off this season in the top flight, with Claudio Ranieri’s surprise package Leicester incredibly seen topping the table, 28 games into the season.

The Foxes had a little bit of a wobble at home to struggling West Brom — dropping two crucial points.

But then came arguably the greatest day of their campaign: Wednesday night, when they weren’t even on the pitch.

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On a bizarre evening that can only be remembered as March Madness, Arsenal slipped to a shock 2-1 defeat at home to relegation-threatened Swansea.

On top of that, West Ham got the better of title-chasing Tottenham, 1-0 — when a win for Spurs would have seen them go top of the league on goal difference.

Not only that, the only side who could be dubbed ‘experienced’ title-winners — Manchester City — were thumped 3-0 by Liverpool, to rack up a 7-1 aggregate loss at the hands of the Reds in the league this term.

The result leaves Ranieri’s men top of the table, three points clear of Mauricio Pochettino’s side, six points ahead of Arsene Wenger’s Gunners and a whopping ten points clear of Manuel Pellegrini’s Etihad crew.

So there it is, title in the bag. Well, not quite...

If you crunch some serious numbers for the last ten games with all results ‘going to plan’ — the league winners will be...

Tottenham. On GOAL DIFFERENCE.

In a ridiculous turn of affairs, this could be the closest Premier League finale of all time, with Spurs, Leicester and Arsenal all TIED on 73 points.

Poch’s side have the upper hand with a far superior goal difference, with the Foxes and Gunners seven and 11 goals back respectively.

So barring some sort of thumping, if Spurs play the way they are able to, the title is theirs for the taking.

If only it were that simple. After all, nerves, pressure and inexperience all play a role at the back end of a tiring, overwhelming campaign.

Statistically, Spurs have a 34.8 per cent chance of bagging the crown — so it’s clearly hardly a done deal.

Leicester are second on 31.8, with Arsenal on 23.7.

City have all but kissed their title dreams goodbye after their Anfield humiliation and now have only 9.7 per cent chance of taking home a winners’ medal.

Only one other club has a shot at winning the league — and I bet you didn’t see this coming.

Marcus Rashford’s stunning brace against Arsenal has boosted Manchester United, not just in terms of mentally, but also physically in the league standings.

They have a 0.2 per cent chance of winning the title. Have strangers things happened?

Liverpool are predicted a sixth-placed spot come the 38-game mark, while Chelsea are tipped to bag seventh — which would be highly impressive given their atrocious start to the season.

That really is testament to the work Guus Hiddink has put in at Stamford Bridge since the sacking of Jose Mourinho.

West Ham, Southampton and Stoke round off the top ten — but let’s turn our attentions to the bottom and ask: Who will face the drop?

Aston Villa have been long relegated in most people’s eyes — and statistically they are set to be relegated, ten points shy of 19th-placed Sunderland.

Norwich are the final team to say hello to the Championship, with Newcastle narrowly avoiding the drop on goal difference only.

Swansea manage to finish the campaign three points from safety, despite not even hitting the fabled 40-points milestone.

In fact, 36 points is enough to go down this season.

So if any team can string a run of wins together — like Leicester in 2014-15, when they won seven of their last nine in an incredible survival story — it’s just as much to play for at the foot of the table as it is at the head.