Premier League title race: How do Arsenal, Leicester, Tottenham and Manchester City usually end the season?

Can we get a better idea of how each title contender will perform by looking each of the last five seasons?

This year’s Premier League title race has, so far, been one of the most enthralling in recent memory.

As the 2015/16 season enters its final throes, four evenly-matched teams remain in contention at the top of the table and the leaders, Leicester City, have provided one of English football’s all-time greatest underdog stories.

After the round of midweek fixtures, most clubs have ten games remaining and we will have reached the campaign’s proverbial ‘business end’.

Can we get a better idea of how each title contender will perform by looking at their records over the final ten games in each of the last five seasons? We crunched the numbers and tried to find out...

Arsenal

2010/11                11
2011/12                18
2012/13                26
2013/14                20
2014/15                21

Average: 19.2

It’s become something of a cliché to note that Arsenal start seasons poorly and then pick up the pace once they have little to play for. That’s not always the case but the Gunners’ relatively good record in the springtime indicates that there may be life in this season’s title tilt yet, despite the weekend’s defeat at Old Trafford.

Over the last three years, Arsenal have earned at least 20 points from their final ten fixtures, which at an average of (you guessed it) 2 points per game, is exactly the type form needed for one last push.

Leicester City

2010/11                15
2011/12                15
2012/13                10
2013/14                21
2014/15                22

Average: 16.6

These findings come with a big, glaring caveat – all but one of these seasons was in the Championship. Conversely, though, their best points haul over the last 10 games in the last five seasons came in 2014/15, while the Foxes were fighting for the top-flight status.

It should be noted that Leicester have ‘bottled’ a title charge in the recent past. Their meagre total of 10 points from the final weeks of 2012/13 came amid a spectacular collapse, which saw them go from automatic promotion candidates to scraping a playoff place.

Manchester City

2010/11                21
2011/12                23
2012/13                19
2013/14                23
2014/15                21

Average: 21.4

Manchester City’s run-ins have been a picture of consistency over the last five years, with their highest and lowest totals varying by only four points. Their tally only fell below 20 in the final weeks of 2012/13, when Roberto Mancini’s empire was falling down about his ears and their neighbours were coasting towards Sir Alex Ferguson’s final league championship.

In both their previous Premier League winning campaigns, 2011/12 and 2013/14, they rallied to take 23 points from their final 10 and, crucially, they go into this campaign with a game in hand over their competitors.

Tottenham Hotspur

2010/11                14
2011/12                16
2012/13                18
2013/14                16
2014/15                14

Average: 15.6

While Leicester are certainly the surprise package, they have at least competed in the title race in recent memory. This is unchartered territory for Tottenham, whose last credible attempt at winning a league championship came in 2011/12 and had largely been snuffed out by springtime.

Mauricio Pochettino’s men will be hoping to avoid any metaphorical (and in the case of Harry Kane, literal) nosebleeds. By virtue of never being in this position before, we do not  majorly improve on the lacklustre 14 points that his team picked up in the final stages of his first season at White Hart Lane.

How do their records compare?

What will the final table look like?

Pos

Team

Points

Points + last 10 average

1

Leicester

57

74

2

Tottenham

54

70

3

Arsenal

51

70

4

Man City

47

70*

 

* Manchester City have a game in hand over the other teams

The table above shows what the Premier League would look like if each side's average last-10-game points tally (when rounded to the nearest whole) was added on to their current one.

It should be noted that, as Manchester City have only played 27 games compared to their rivals' 28, we've used the somewhat unscientific method of adding an extra 1/10th of their average, taking their total from 68 to 70.

The final results suggest that Leicester's remarkable run will end in glory and little will separate the chasing pack.

This is not intended to be presented as the way the table will definitely look come late in the day on 15 May.

There are many, many caveats. For at least two of these four clubs, at this stage of the campaign, the stakes are higher than they've been in any of the last five seasons. That added pressure could galvanise them or it could break their title tilt in two.

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