How Chelsea can qualify for Europa League after Man United horror show at Crystal Palace

Mauricio Pochettino will be determined to extend Chelsea’s unbeaten streak as the Premier League campaign nears its conclusion

Cole Palmer celebrates scoring for Chelsea against West Ham

Chelsea have been given a major boost to their hopes of securing European football following Manchester United’s 4-0 defeat to Crystal Palace. The Eagles stormed past Erik ten Hag’s side at Selhurst Park on Monday night, extending their unbeaten streak to five games.

Palace burst out of the gates, with Michael Olise breaking the deadlock inside the opening quarter of an hour. Jean-Philippe Mateta then doubled the home side’s lead shortly before half-time, netting his ninth goal in 11 Premier League games.

Tyrick Mitchell then etched himself onto the scoresheet in the second half. A few moments later, Olise doubled his tally for the evening with a brilliant strike to put the final nail in the coffin. Following defeat in south London, Man United squandered the opportunity to leapfrog Chelsea and Newcastle in the race for Europa League qualification.

But, with three games left to play, a lot could still change before the curtain drops. So, with that being said, football.london has looked at how Chelsea can secure European football.

Premier League

Italy and Germany have claimed the additional Champions League qualifying places, so only the top four in the Premier League will go into next season’s revised competition. Aston Villa only need three more points from their last two games to join Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool.

Only Tottenham Hotspur can rival Unai Emery’s side for a place in the top four. Fifth place will qualify for next season’s Europa League, with the team going straight into the new setup rather than playing any additional pre-qualifiers.

While Chelsea trail Spurs in fifth by six points with only a few games to spare, fifth place remains possible. However, the Blues would have to rely on Newcastle, Manchester United AND Tottenham to drop points – which is unlikely.

FA Cup

While Chelsea aren’t, of course, in the FA Cup final, the competition still throws the club a lifeline of some sort. The winners of the FA Cup will claim a place in the Europa League. If the winners finish in the top five of the Premier League – and therefore qualify for the Champions League or Europa League through their league position – the Europa League spot will be passed down to the next-highest ranked English top-flight outfit not competing in Europe.

Permutations

If Manchester United don’t finish in the top five but win the FA Cup then they qualify for the Europa League, with sixth place claiming the Europa Conference League.

But, if Manchester City win the FA Cup then Europa League qualification will be awarded to team ranked fifth and sixth, while seventh place claims Europa Conference League. So, Chelsea can finish seventh and still secure European football on the basis that Pep Guardiola’s side defeat the Red Devils at Wembley.

Current Standings

Manchester United currently sit eighth on 54 points, while, Newcastle rank sixth on 56 points and Chelsea place seventh on 54 points. All three teams have three Premier League games left.

Remaining Fixtures

Manchester United

Arsenal (H) – Sunday, May 12

Newcastle United (H) – Wednesday, May 15

Brighton (A) – Sunday, May 19

Newcastle United

Brighton (H) – Saturday, May 11

Man United (A) – Wednesday, May 15

Brentford (A) – Sunday, May 19

Chelsea

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