The Premier League will have two sets of medals and identical trophies on standby as Manchester City and Liverpool’s title race goes right down to this Sunday’s final day. One of the trophies, however, will be a replica.
A Vincent Kompany thunderbolt on Monday night sent City back to the top of the table on 95 points, one ahead of Liverpool, who are searching for their first league title since 1990.
Where will the real Premier League trophy be on Sunday? Five key things to know…
- This season’s title race has been the closest since City’s famous ‘Aguero moment’ in 2012.
- Guardiola’s men are top of the table on 95 points, just one point ahead of Liverpool.
- The Reds host Wolves on the final day, while City head to Brighton.
- Such is the unpredictable nature of this title race, the Premier League have confirmed both grounds will have a trophy on standby.
- But, according to reports, the trophy located at Anfield will be a replica while the real thing will only be lifted should City retain the title.
The ‘dummy’ trophy, the Times reports, is identical in design and material – solid sterling silver – will be at Anfield as City have the greater chance of winning the English top flight due to their one-point advantage in the table.
The real trophy, referred to as the ‘Champions’ Trophy’, has in fact been housed by the Etihad ever since they earned it last May.
The Reds have pushed the reigning champions right down to the wire and a win over Wolves in their final domestic game of the season could see them finish with 97 points – a total only bettered in the Premier League era by City’s ‘Centurions’ last season.
However, with Pep Guardiola’s men failing to blink, that may not be enough as a win for City over Brighton in their final game would see them crowned champions with 98 points.
The Premier League are yet to appoint a successor to outgoing chief executive Richard Scudamore, so trophy presentation duties will fall to either interim chair Claudia Arney at Brighton or interim CEO Richard Masters at Anfield.
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“For the Premier League to be prepared for such circumstances, there are two Premier League trophies,” a league spokesman said.
“One remains with the league champions during each season, while the other is used by the league. The trophies are identical in design and look, and both include an engraved base detailing past Premier League champions.”
What is required on the final day?
With these two title rivals so close, we could see the title swing back and forth, depending on results in both games.
A win for City would guarantee them the title but if they were to slip up at all, a Liverpool win will see Klopp’s side sneak above them at the final hurdle. A defeat for City and a draw for Liverpool would see the two sides go level on points but Guardiola’s men would still retain the title due to their superior goal difference – this would be a repeat of the 2011-12 season where City pipped United to the title on the final day of the season.
Without a doubt, Liverpool face the tougher task of the two sides, with Wolves currently holding seventh spot and in impressive form this season against the Premier League’s big guns. Nuno Espirito Santo’s men have already beat Liverpool once this season in the FA Cup.
City, meanwhile, travel to 17th-placed Brighton, who have already confirmed their Premier League survival and were beaten by the reigning Champions in the FA Cup semi-final recently.
How are Premier League winner’s medals allocated?
Although previously the winner’s medals were dished out based on appearances, nowadays the league winners are given 20 medals to distribute as they so choose. However, players who have made five appearances or more and coaching staff are guaranteed a medal.