Were LFC to maintain a 100% record till the end of the season they would finish with 72 points. So, how would that fare in any other season? Well, only once in the last 10 years has a team finished 4th with more than 72 points. That team was Liverpool in 2008.
On only one other occasion has a team finished 4th with 72 points and that was in 2010.
But with the race for the top 5 positions so tightly contested, how many points will be required to take a place in the Champions League or in the Europa League?
Well, going from my highly unscientific method of guessing how the contenders will do in their remaining fixtures then 72 points would indeed take Liverpool into 4th place and the final berth for the golden ticket of Champions League football.
My prediction for the results of the other clubs in the outstanding matches would leave Chelsea with 69 points, Arsenal with 68 points and Spurs with 75 points (I was tempted to do another table but thought I would spare you all this week)
So 69 points would take that precious 5th spot for Europa League qualification based on my predictions. If you’re happy to accept my point estimates, (which I’m sure you all will) then Liverpool could only lose or draw one of their remaining matches if they are to play in Europe at all next year.
For the sake of humour I will let you all know how Everton get on in my ‘predict the result’ method for the last fixtures. They finish with 55 points which would see me joyfully take a few quid off my brother in our pound a point bet this year.
Arsenal 64, Chelsea 70, Spurs 73, Everton 61 (for the record Liverpool would end up with 59 points in this method).
If our rivals did accumulate the above number of points, then if Liverpool drew just one match in the run in then they would play in Europe next season but would have to better Chelsea’s goal tally to get into the Champions League. We would also only be able to drop 8 points in the run in.
However, I would anticipate Liverpool to take more given the teams they have to face and Everton to suffer due to their punishing fixture list.
So what is the likelihood that Liverpool can remain unbeaten and win 9 of the 10 matches remaining? Well, given that we have only won 3 on the trot for the first time in a long time with a win over Spurs then our hopes of hitting Europe are fairly slim. Align to that the fact that we’ve only had 12 wins out of the 29 games we have contested so far and the task seems all the more impossible.
That said we are on our best run since Kenny’s impressive comeback after the Hodgson debacle. So while the eternal optimist in me backs us to take 27 points and scrape into the Champions League, the stark reality is that we almost certainly won’t be playing in Europe next season.
But football is redundant without vain hopes of some form of success so here’s hoping Gerrard’s target and my childlike dream comes true and we have the perfect run in and the perfect ending to the season.