That Time of Year Again

We know that feeling as it’s become a yearly occurence—fixtures are winding down, races for European sports are firing up, and Lukaku is being linked away from Merseyside. Especially after Koeman said in his presser that Rom won’t sign a new contract, fans are wondering “What now?”.

As Ronnie mentioned, the focus is on wrapping up the season: he’ll deal with contracts later. Five games left, a spot in Europa looking close, and the opportunity to continue a great run of form.

Barkley Running Wild

Our diamond has been on fire, showcasing his oozing talent most recently against Burnley (Southgate are you watching?). He was all over the place, helping out on both sides of the ball.

On defence, Ross cleared Keane’s header off the line along with four additional clearances, four blocks, and one tackle. Offensively he retained possession efficiently, completed 89% of his passes, and was 4/4 on take ons. He continuously gave Heaton nightmares by firing seven shots in total with one finding the back of the net.

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Ross Barkley’s pass-map at home versus Burnley (Squawka)

Lukaku Continuing Form

It is quite blatant how well Lukaku is doing this half of the year, winning the player of the month award for March as well as scoring more goals than Middlesbrough this year. His goal count equals Suarez’s tally for this year (24), and is only one less in goals from open play in Europe’s top five leagues than leader Higuain (20). He’s raw, young, and only looking to improve.

The Issues

This year we have only managed four away wins. In total, only 16 points have been picked up away from home. Our home dominance is apparent being top five in Europe’s top five leagues at home in terms of points. Our back line is shaky, and Coleman’s sad injury on international duty hasn’t helped. Joel has his days where he seems to be unstoppable and others that make you wonder.

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Joel Robles compared to Premier League’s top goalkeepers (Squawka)

Next Fixtures

West Ham away looks a great opportunity to get three points without much trouble. Chelsea at home seems a tough draw, but given how well our record at home is, three points could happen. With Conte’s title charge being threatened by Spurs, they could come charging furiously. Swansea and Watford are much of the same story as West Ham, but the last game against Arsenal could very likely hold our challenge for sixth or above. Given their poor run, this could be the biggest game of the season.

 

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