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Will fortune favour Liverpool in the race for the Premier League title?

Will fortune favour Liverpool in the race for the Premier League title?

It's been another exciting season in the Premier League so far, and as the race to be top of the table come Christmas Day is reaching its climax, it's Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool who find themselves neck and neck. Spurs have never sat at the top of the Premier League at Christmas, while Liverpool have on five occasions – most recently, last year, when they won the title. Prior to that success, they had the unenviable record of four previous seasons of being top at Christmas, only for the trophy to be awarded elsewhere.

While neither club are the favourite for the title in the latest Premier League odds – that honour bizarrely sitting with Manchester City in ninth – we have decided to delve through the archives to the last three times where the Premier League title was awarded to the club who topped the table at Christmas.

2019-20 – Liverpool

Where else could we start but last season. As we mentioned in the intro, Liverpool had topped the table on four occasions previously (1996-97, 2008-09, 2013-14 and 2018-19) and they finally ended their dry spell of 29 years without a league title, last season. Jurgen Klopp's side were runaway leaders, and on Christmas Day last year, they were 10 points clear of Manchester City with a game in hand. The continued to assert their dominance over their rivals and broke numerous records, including the earliest title win (with seven games to spare), and biggest lead throughout the course of a season (25 points). They eventually finished 18 points ahead of City, while Manchester United were a further 15 points behind.

2017-18 – Manchester City

Not only did the Citizens win the Premier League title in 2017-18, after topping the table at Christmas, they did so with the highest points tally to date – reaching the 100 points mark. At the halfway stage of the campaign, they were the only team to have gone unbeaten (18 wins and one draw), and were 13 points clear of their city rivals, United. Sadly, it wasn't to be a season without defeat, as Pep Guardiola's side eventually lost to Liverpool (4-3) in January, and lost the Manchester Derby at the Etihad too (2-3). But the Citizens became known as the Centurions, and their heroics in the league made the record books for achievements including: most points (100), most away points (50), most points ahead of second (19), most wins (32), most away wins (16), most goals (106) and, best goal difference (+79).

2016-17 – Chelsea

It was a fairly rocky start to the season for Antonio Conte's Blues. After back-to-back defeats early on, Chelsea slipped to as low as eighth, but after that point, they really turned the screw. A run of 13 consecutive wins saw them cement their place at the top of the Premier League table, and they went in at Christmas six points ahead of Liverpool. Another run of eight wins without defeat saw the gap at the top widen, and their title hopes were secured with two matches to play, after a narrow 1-0 win away at West Bromwich Albion. It proved to be a wonderful end to an era for captain John Terry, who is the south-west London club's most successful captain.

Other times the team at the top remained champions

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