The Premier League’s Amazing History of Final Day Goal-Fests

The Premier League’s Amazing History of Final Day Goal-Fests
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Jamie Vardy leads the top scorer chart with 23 goals and is therefore odds-on to win the golden boot

The 2019/20 Premier League season concludes on Sunday, 353 days after Liverpool and Norwich got the season off to an explosive start on August 9.

The Reds claimed their first win on the way to claiming their 19th domestic league title with a 4-1 win to start the campaign with a bang.

Will the longest ever Premier League season end with a bag full of goals? Perhaps – the final day of the season has become one of the highest scoring rounds in the competition's 28-year history.

One reason for this is because many teams know they are safe and aren't going to risk flying in to 50/50 challenges that could see them receiving treatment in the short time they will have off before the new football season commences.

Furthermore, concentration levels understandably drop and any defensive mistakes made could be punished especially with five players battling it out for the Golden Boot award.

Jamie Vardy leads the way with 23 goals, but with Southampton's Danny Ings (21), Arsenal's Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (20), Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (19) and Manchester City's Raheem Sterling (19) in hot pursuit, we can expect these players to do all they can to make it an explosive finish to a long, drawn-out season because of Covid-19.

In eight of the last 10 seasons, at least one game on the final day has produced six or more goals – including the last five. Of the 100 matches played on the final day since the 2009/10 campaign, only three have finished goalless, the same number of games that have seen eight total goals scored.

A total of 1,001 goals have been scored so far this season, which means the record of 1,072 netted in the 2018/19 campaign remains intact for another season. That total was boosted by a total of 36 goals coming on the final day which saw three of the 10 matches produce five or more goals.

The tally fell one short of the current record of 37 scored as the curtain came down on the 2016/17 season (a total of 53 goals were scored on the final day of the inaugural Premier League season, but that was when the competition was made up of 22 teams).

The average number of goals scored on the final day of the season has risen from 2.44 between 1995/96 and 1999/00 to 3.45 for the last four campaigns. With at least one game in each of the last three seasons producing eight or more goals, over 7.5 total goals might well be a bet worth looking at.

Average Goals Per Game On Final Day

Time PeriodAverage
1995/96 to 1999/002.44
2000/01 to 2004/053.08
2005/06 to 2009/102.94
2010/11 to 2014/153.14
2015/16 to 2018/193.45

Newcastle + Liverpool = Goals

Liverpool's trip to Newcastle could be one game in which we see plenty of goals. This will be the 50th meeting between the two sides in the Premier League and the previous encounters average 3.1 goals per game.

Who can forget Liverpool's back-to-back 4-3 wins at Anfield in 1996 and 1997 against the Magpies that makes this fixture one of the most entertaining in the competition?

The Reds were presented the Premier League trophy for the first time after Jurgen Klopp's side beat Chelsea 5-3 on Wednesday night which was another indication that matches at the end of the season can produce above the season's average of 2.71 total goals per game. Incidentally, Christian Pulisic's goal for Chelsea was the 1,000th goal of this season's Premier League.

Paddy Power is one of the few betting companies offering the option of backing over 7.5 total goals and their customers can get 25/1 for Newcastle and Liverpool to combine for eight or more total goals. On request, William Hill will offer 15/2 for over 37.5 total goals in Sunday’s Premier League matches.

Paddy Power are also offering odds of 50/1 for Tottenham's visit to Crystal Palace to produce over 7.5 total goals which are generous odds given Palace's 5-3 win over Bournemouth on the final day of last season. And in Matchday 38 of the 2017/18 season, Harry Kane scored twice as Tottenham came out 5-4 winners in a nine-goal thriller with Leicester.

Twelve months earlier, Spurs ended their campaign on a high by winning 7-1 at Hull City with Kane scoring a hat-trick. If Kane is on top of his game, there could be more goals for the England skipper at Selhurst Park.

Final day games with six or more goals since 2009/10

Chelsea 8-0 Wigan2009/10
Man Utd 4-2 Blackpool2010/11
Newcastle 3-3 West Brom2010/11
Man Utd 5-5 West Brom2012/13
West Ham 4-2 Reading2012/13
Leicester 5-1 QPR2014/15
Stoke 6-1 Liverpool2014/15
Newcastle 5-1 Tottenham2015/16
Chelsea 5-1 Sunderland2016/17
Hull City 1-7 Tottenham2016/17
Tottenham 5-4 Leicester2017/18
Crystal Palace 5-3 Bournemouth2018/19

Manchester City's home game with Norwich could also be a game that produces a few goals. City equalled the Premier League record for goals scored by one team over another in one season when their 4-0 win at home to Watford took their tally against the Hornets to 12. Pep Guardiola's side face relegated Norwich, who won the first meeting 3-2 at Carrow Road in September.

City have a Champions League last 16 second leg against Real Madrid coming up on August 7, so City's strikers will be doing all they can to impress their manager to ensure they start that crucial European tie in which they lead 2-1 from the first leg.

Another fixture that could produce goals is Manchester United's trip to Leicester in a crucial battle to secure a top four spot. One point separates United, who go into the fixture third, with Leicester fifth and Chelsea in between them.

A win for either the Foxes or United will guarantee a top-four finish while defeat for the other could see them drop into the Europa League if Chelsea beat Wolves. Neither side will want to rely on what happens at Stamford Bridge which could tempt Leicester and United to approach this game in a very positive manner.

Manchester United supporters will be heartened by the fact that their side has taken more points on the final day of the season in the 27 completed seasons of the Premier League than any other club.

Average Points From Final Game Since 1992/93

ClubAverageNo. of Games
Man Utd2.2227
West Ham1.7722
Man City1.4522
Crystal Palace1.4010
Aston Villa1.0424
Sheffield Utd1.003

United take an average 2.2 points per game while Leicester average one point from their 13 matches on the final day with Chelsea third on the list with 1.96 points per game.

At the bottom end of the table, Watford need at least a point to climb out of the relegation zone. The omens are not good for the Hornets ahead of their trip to Arsenal as they average 0.83 points from their six matches played on the final day of the Premier League.

Bournemouth need to win at Everton to have any chance of surviving, but they average one point on the final day from their four games. Aston Villa's goal difference is keeping them above the drop zone and they travel to West Ham averaging 1.04 points from their 24 games played in the season finale. One point at the London Stadium will be enough to keep Villa up if Watford and Bournemouth fail to win.

Whatever happens on Sunday, there will be highs for some teams and lows for others as European and relegation issues get resolved. And if previous seasons are any indication, there will be plenty of goals too.

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