Premier League ball

Premier League: Matchweek 26 Preview

The 2023/24 Premier League is set to resume this weekend, with 8 games being played across Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

February’s final round of 2023/24 Premier League football is set to be played this weekend, with Matchweek 26 fixtures being played over the course of Saturday, 24th, Sunday, 25th and Monday, 26th February 2024.

The 8 matches being played over these three days will see the situation of the title race, European race, and relegation battle changed as teams look to take another step closer to achieving their goals for the current campaign. Liverpool is at the top of the tree, but Manchester City has a game in hand in second place, and they have the possibility to close the gap to just 1 point.

Liverpool will, of course, not be playing, as they are involved in the 2024 Carabao Cup Final on Sunday alongside Chelsea.

Spurs have the opportunity to reclaim 4th place should Aston Villa lose; however, in contrast to this, the Villans could increase the gap between themselves and Tottenham should they secure victory at Villa Park this Saturday. Erik Ten Hag’s Manchester United could go level on points with Spurs should they win and the Lilywhites lose.

Towards the bottom of the Premier League table, Luton Town will be looking to leapfrog relegation rivals Everton out of the relegation zone and into 17th place. The Toffees will be looking for a win that would make it certain that they remain outside of the bottom three for at least another week.

Burnley and Sheffield United will look to close the gap between themselves and Premier League survival, whilst Nottingham Forest, Crystal Palace, Brentford and Bournemouth will be looking to increase the gap between themselves and danger even further with positive results this weekend.

Here, we will take a look at and preview all 8 Premier League fixtures set to be played across the weekend and on Monday.

Aston Villa v Nottingham Forest (Saturday 24th February, Villa Park – 15:00)

Firstly, there is Unai Emery’s Aston Villa, who are set to take on a Nottingham Forest side led by their Portuguese Head Coach Nuno Espirito Santo at Villa Park in the Premier League on Saturday, 24th February 2024, in what will be a 15:00 kick-off.

A win for Villa would see them remain in the top four for another week whilst also potentially increasing the gap on their closest UEFA Champions League qualification rival, Spurs, should results go their way. As for Forest, they could increase the gap between themselves and the relegation zone to as many as 7 points should they win and other results go their way.

Nottingham Forest were 2 – 0 winners at the City Ground in their most recent meeting in the Premier League earlier this season.

Brighton v Everton (Saturday 24th February, Amex Stadium – 15:00)

Next is a match between Roberto de Zerbi’s Brighton and an Everton side led by Sean Dyche at the Amex Stadium on the South Coast on Saturday, 24th February. The game is set to kick off at 15:00 that afternoon.

Victory for the Seagulls would narrow the gap between themselves and 6th place Manchester United should the Red Devils lose, and this would, of course, strengthen their case for European football once more. As for Everton, the Toffees can increase the gap to the relegation zone to 3 points with all three points.

The most recent game between them in the Premier League was on 4th November 2023 in a 1 – 1 draw at Goodison Park.

Crystal Palace v Burnley (Saturday 24th February, Selhurst Park – 15:00)

New Crystal Palace Head Coach Oliver Glasner is set to take charge of his first-ever Premier League game at Selhurst Park against a Burnley side led by Vincent Kompany in a 15:00 kick-off on Saturday, 24th February 2024.

This is a clash between two relegation candidates. However, Palace could increase the gap between themselves and danger to as many as 8 points should they take all three points back home to Merseyside. As for the Clarets, if results go their way, the gap between themselves and Premier League safety could decrease to just 4 points.

The most recent game between Crystal Palace and Burnley in the Premier League took place on 4th November 2023, when the Eagles sealed a comfortable 2 – 0 victory at Turf Moor in Lancashire.

Manchester United v Fulham (Saturday 24th February, Old Trafford – 15:00)

Following confirmation of Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s investment into Manchester United, Erik Ten Hag’s Red Devils are set to welcome a Fulham side led by Portuguese Head Coach Marco Silva on Saturday, 24th February, in a 15:00 kick-off.

Victory for United would bring them level on points with Tottenham Hotspur in 5th, whilst also increasing the gap between themselves and 6th place Brighton to as many as 9 points. As for the Cottagers, they could narrow the gap between them and Wolves and Chelsea to just 3 points should results go their way.

The most recent game between Manchester United and Fulham in the Premier League took place at Craven Cottage on 4th November 2023, in which United won 1 – 0  thanks to a goal from Bruno Fernandes (90+1’).

AFC Bournemouth v Manchester City (Saturday 24th February, Vitality Stadium – 17:30)

Two Spaniards are set to compete for all three points when Andoni Iraola’s AFC Bournemouth and Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City come face to face in the Premier League on Saturday evening at the Vitality Stadium in what will be a 17:30 kick-off on the South Coast.

A win for the Cherries would potentially see them leapfrog Fulham into 12th place should they win and the Cottagers lose their game against Manchester United this weekend. As for City, they are certain to narrow the gap between themselves and league leaders Liverpool to just 1 point for at least a week should they take all three points.

The most recent Premier League game between AFC Bournemouth and Manchester City took place on 4th November 2023, where the Cityzens were emphatic 6 – 1 winners at the Etihad Stadium.

Arsenal v Newcastle United (Saturday 24th February, Emirates Stadium – 20:00)

The final game to be taking place on Saturday, 24th February, is set to see Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal take on a Newcastle United side led by Head Coach Eddie Howe at the Emirates Stadium. The game is set to take place in North London in what will be a 20:00 kick-off.

With Manchester City being the only title rivals to be playing on Matchweek 26, the Gunners can decrease the gap between themselves and Premier League leaders Liverpool to just 2 points going into March’s first weekend of matches. As for their North East counterparts, they could leapfrog Brighton into 7th place with a win, should the Seagulls lose their or draw their game against Everton.

The most recent Premier League game between Arsenal and Newcastle United took place on 4th November at St. James’ Park, where the Magpies beat the Gunners 1 – 0 on the day.

Wolves v Sheffield United (Sunday 25th February, Molineux – 13:30)

The first and only 2023/24 Premier League fixture to be played on Sunday, 25th February 2024, will be between Gary O’Neil’s Wolves and bottom-of-the-table Sheffield United, led by Head Coach Chris Wilder. The game will be played at Molineux in a 13:30 kick-off against the Blades.

Wolves have been in great form recently, and should they win, all three points could see them climb as high as 8th place should results go their way this weekend. As for the Blades, they could reduce the gap to safety from 7 to just 4 points if they are victorious and the sides immediately above them, like Burnley, Luton and Everton, lose their matches.

The most recent Premier League game between Wolves and Sheffield United occurred on 4th November 2023, which saw the Blades collect one of their 3 wins this season. They were able to beat their Black Country counterparts 2 – 1 at Bramall Lane.

West Ham United v Brentford (Monday 26th February, London Stadium – 20:00)

The final game of Matchweek 26 that we will preview here is set to be between David Moyes’ West Ham United and Thomas Frank’s Brentford at the London Stadium on Monday, 26th February 2024, in what will be a 20:00 kick-off in East London.

Moyes’ Hammers could leapfrog Newcastle United and Brighton into 7th place should they win and the Magpies and Seagulls lose their matches in the Premier League against Arsenal and Everton, respectively. As for the Bees, they have the chance to leapfrog Bournemouth into 13th place should they take home all three points, as long as the Cherries lose their game against reigning European and Premier League Champions Manchester City on Saturday.

The most recent Premier League game between West Ham United and Brentford took place on 4th November 2023, where the Bees were 3 – 2 winners at their Gtech Community Stadium home on that day.

Excitement and anticipation are growing rapidly ahead of the 26th round of Premier League action getting underway on Saturday, 24th February 2024.

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