Manchester City and Liverpool resume their epic battle for the Premier League title on Sunday after a midweek of contrasting Champions League fortunes, with both sides facing perilous fixtures.
City travel to Crystal Palace trailing Jurgen Klopp’s men by two points, but still with the title in their hands thanks to a game in hand.
However, the visit to Selhurst Park kicks off a tough run of fixtures in which Pep Guardiola’s men host Tottenham twice, play Manchester United at Old Trafford and face a tricky trip to Burnley.
The 1-0 defeat at Spurs in Tuesday’s first leg of their Champions League quarter-final snapped a 14-game winning streak and means Guardiola has huge calls to make with his team selection this weekend.
If he has one eye on Wednesday’s second leg on home soil, Palace could hurt City and hand Liverpool a title boost.
Roy Hodgson’s men inflicted City’s only home defeat of the campaign in December and also ended the champions’ record 18-game winning run in the Premier League last season.
Victory for City to go back on top would flip the pressure onto Liverpool’s shoulders just minutes before they kick off against Chelsea at Anfield.
The Londoners’ visit evokes memories of the last time Liverpool, who took a big step towards the Champions League semi-finals by beating Porto 2-0 at home in midweek, went close to ending their long wait for a league title.
Then under Brendan Rodgers, the Reds were three games away from glory in 2014 until captain Steven Gerrard’s now infamous slip allowed Demba Ba to score the opening goal in a gutting 2-0 Chelsea victory.
Chelsea are the only visiting side to have won at Anfield this season thanks to a wonderful Eden Hazard solo goal that sealed a 2-1 victory in the League Cup back in September.
Ominously for Liverpool, the Belgian was back to his best on Monday, scoring both goals — including another incredible individual effort — in a 2-0 win over West Ham that lifted Chelsea into third.