Premier League: Your breakdown of the festive fixtures
As we tuck into our Christmas turkeys, the big boys from the Premier League will be putting in the hard yards to tackle one of the toughest parts of the domestic season; the festive period.
With no winter break and the already compressed schedule to deal with this season, this Christmas looks like being even more challenging than usual with games on Boxing Day through until New Year.
Can Chelsea overcome Arsenal on Boxing Day before a tricky trip to Villa Park? Can Fulham take advantage of their extended rest time between games in their battle for survival?
We take a look at which teams have the least rest and what the consequences of playing two games in a matter of days could be, plus the potential fallout the festive period could have heading into the second half of the season.
One of the most highly anticipated rounds of fixtures in the season. This year there are six games to sink your teeth into starting with Leicester City v Manchester United at lunchtime.
Aston Villa v Crystal Palace and Fulham v Southampton are the two afternoon clashes before Arsenal host Chelsea at the Emirates at 17:30.
The Boxing Day schedule concludes with a double header at 20:00 with Manchester City v Newcastle United and Sheffield United v Everton.
The best of the rest
Liverpool and Tottenham are both in action on Sunday 27th December with the Premier League champions hosting West Bromwich Albion at Anfield. Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham face a tricky trip to the Midlands to take on Wolves.
On Monday 28th, Chelsea and Aston Villa meet following their respective Boxing Day matches with Manchester City making the short trip down the M62 to Goodison Park to play Everton.
There are five evening matches on 29th December, including Brighton v Arsenal and Southampton v West Ham.
Liverpool and Tottenham then conclude their 2020 fixtures with Spurs playing a London derby against Fulham at home, while Jurgen Klopp’s side make the trip to the north-east to face Newcastle United.
Who has the most rest?
The fixture schedule has, however, been kind to Fulham and Newcastle in particular. Both Scott Parker and Steve Bruce’s sides have almost 100 hours recovery in what could set the tone for the rest of their season.
Manchester United, Liverpool, Southampton and Arsenal all also have more than three days between their two games.
Tottenham have a turnaround time of 70 hours and 45 minutes between their two games after Christmas, while Arsenal have a gap of 73 hours and 30 minutes.
Liverpool – who have an eight-day break before their game against West Brom on December 27 – have a gap of 75 hours and 30 minutes between their two post-Christmas matches, while Man United have a gap of 79 hours and 30 minutes.
Who has the least rest?
Chelsea, Manchester City, Crystal Palace and Everton have just 48 hours rest time between matches on Boxing Day and December 28 – the shortest of any clubs over the congested Christmas period.
Wolves, Leicester and Aston Villa are the next bunch of teams with the shortest recovery between matches. With five gameweeks scheduled in January, those who get greater rest during the Christmas phase may well reap the rewards early next year in the second half of the season.
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication.