MATCHDAY: Arsenal needs to beat Forest otherwise Man City wins EPL
A look at what’s happening in European soccer on Saturday:
The Premier League title race could be decided if Nottingham Forest beats Arsenal, but Gunners manager Mikel Arteta is refusing to give up hope of catching Manchester City. “We’re still there,” he says. “With two games to go we can still be champions against probably the best team in Premier League history.” In reality, Arsenal’s best hope is to prolong the race, with City one win away from being crowned champion. Forest could take a giant step toward top-flight survival with a win that would move it six points clear of the relegation zone. Everton is one point above the drop zone and travels to Wolverhampton. In the battle for Champions League qualification, fourth-placed Manchester United travels to Bournemouth and fifth-placed Liverpool hosts Aston Villa.
Bayern Munich can take a big step toward retaining the Bundesliga title with a win over third-placed Leipzig. Bayern leads Borussia Dortmund by one point with two games to go, and its goal-difference advantage means a win over Leipzig will effectively leave Dortmund having to win against Augsburg on Sunday to stay in the title race. Elsewhere, Union Berlin is chasing Champions League qualification for the first time as it visits Hoffenheim, and only a win will keep alive last-placed Hertha Berlin’s slim hopes of avoiding relegation against Bochum. Fellow relegation candidate Schalke hosts Eintracht Frankfurt and league top scorer Niclas Füllkrug could return from injury as his Werder Bremen team plays Cologne.
Barcelona will receive the trophy for its recently won league title when it hosts Real Sociedad at Camp Nou. Barcelona clinched its first major title since the exit of Lionel Messi last weekend with a win at Espanyol. Sociedad is in fourth place and trying to wrap up the final Champions league berth. Barcelona’s Gavi Páez is suspended while Pedri González and Ronald Araújo are injured. Fifth-placed Villarreal is five points from Sociedad before visiting red-hot Girona. Girona has climbed into seventh place after just one loss in its last nine games. Almeria and Getafe both seek wins to avoid relegation. Almeria hosts Mallorca, while Getafe welcomes the already demoted Elche. Eighth-placed Athletic Bilbao also plays Celta Vigo as it tries to overtake Girona for the Conference League spot.
After being eliminated from the Champions League, AC Milan needs to get back on track against already-relegated Sampdoria to try to make it into next season’s competition. Milan lost at Inter Milan 1-0 on Tuesday in the Champions League semifinals. Milan has won only one of its past six matches in all competitions and that has left the Rossoneri four points below fourth-placed Lazio and the final Champions League qualifying spot. Atalanta is three points further back and hosts relegation-threatened Hellas Verona. A point would see Verona move out of the bottom three. The situation is more bleak for Cremonese, which is six points from safety and hosts Bologna.
Marseille can overtake Lens for second place in the league, if it can win at Lille. In the only other game, Nantes can get out of the drop zone with a home win over Montpellier.
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