The fairy tale at Leicester City in the Barclays Premier League has come to a happy end after Tottenham Hotspur failed to take more than a point at Stamford Bridge leaving too many points to cover in the title race.
Ranieri’s exploits at the King Power Stadium will not only see them lift the Premier League title this season but will also give them a great chance to qualify for the knock-out stages of Europe’s elite competition, the Champions League next season.
Pochettino’s work at the London franchise should not be ignored as the Spurs have been equally impressive in the league this season. They will also reap the benefits of their league form this season with a place in the Champions League next season if they can get just one point from the remaining two fixtures in the season.
The final two spots are still a race till the end with Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City and even West Ham battling for just two spots.
Recent form would suggest Arsenal would occupy one of those places leaving City, United and West Ham fighting for a single place in the competition next season.
However, with Manchester City also busy in the semi-final of the same competition this season, the qualifying scenarios have taken a turn.
If the Etihad outfit manage to down Real Madrid at the Bernabeu in a few days time and go on to lift the Premier League title, they will be guaranteed a place in the next season’s competition irrespective of their league finish.
If they manage to finish in the top-4 places, the 4th qualifying place from the Premier League table will move to the 5th position.
But it only gets more confusing because of Klopp’s genius in the Europa League.
The Red of Merseyside has a decent chance of going all the way in the Europa League this season and if they manage to win the trophy, they will also be given a direct entry into the Champions League next season.
This will leave 5 English teams qualifying for the Champions League next season.
So to simplify things, If City and Liverpool manage to win the two European Cups, and City manage to a slip-up from the top-4, there will only be three places available for the competition from England with the 4th placed team qualifying only for the Europa League.
This will leave United, West Ham or even Arsenal with a cruel blow if the scenario does end up taking shape come to the end of the season.
We are not finished yet as the Europa League spots are also up for grabs.
In a normal season, 3 Premier League teams have a chance to get into Europe’s second tier competition. The 5th placed side and the FA Cup winner go straight into the tournament while the League Cup winner gets into the qualifying round of the competition.
However, in the above scenario with City and Liverpool winning the respective competitions, and playing in the Champions League next season, City’s League Cup place in the Europa League will move on to the 6th placed side in the Premier League points table.
But wait, Manchester Untied are still in with a shout in the FA Cup through which they can qualify for the Europa League. But they are set to finish in the top-5 giving them a direct entry into the competition.
In this scenario, the Europa League qualification can go until the 8th placed team in the points table.
The only way that 5 English teams play in the next season’s competition is if Liverpool lifts the Europa League finish below the qualification places in the points table.
So even with the title decided, between the Europe qualifications and the relegation struggle, there is plenty to look forward to at the fag-end of the current Premier League season.