THE Premier League is coming to the end of its first-ever winter break with the title race all-but over already.
After the fight for the crown went down to the final day in a thrilling season last year – with Manchester City edging out Liverpool by a single point – no-one could have seen this coming.
How the Premier League looks after the winter breakOnly in February and Jurgen Klopp’s rampant Reds are a whopping 22 points ahead of City and look almost certain to finally win their first-ever Premier League crown.
Of course, there’s plenty still to play for in the Prem, with just six points separating Chelsea in fourth and Wolves in ninth as the race for European spots heats up.
There’s also just ONE point between Arsenal in tenth and Crystal Palace in 14th in a bunched-up middle of the table.
Just three points separate 15th from 19th too, as the battle to avoid the drop heats up.
But in terms of title race? There will surely be no drama… unlike the rest of Europe.
Spain, Germany and particularly Italy are all enjoying a fierce fight to win the league. Take a look at how close it is on the continent, below…
FOR a really tasty title fight, tune into the Serie A for the rest of the year.
Inter Milan – full of Premier League rejects – are currently top of the league, ahead of Juventus, who have won the past EIGHT titles.
Antonio Conte’s side are top on goal difference alone, with Lazio in third just a single point behind, with the Italian flight going goal-mad this season.
In fact, in terms of goals per game, Italy ranks as the most exciting in Europe this season – a far cry from the “defensive” reputation it has accrued over the years.
Then there’s the fight for the European spots, with just two points separating tenth-placed AC Milan and sixth-placed Verona in the final Europa League berth.
At the foot of the table, it’s anybody’s guess, with just ten points separating 12th-placed Sassuolo from the relegation zone.
Between 12th and 20th, big names Fiorentina, Udinese, Torino and Sampdoria are all in trouble, while Genoa, Brescia and SPAL are currently those in the bottom three.
CERTAINLY not for the first time, it’s looking like a straight fight between Barcelona and Real Madrid for the title.
Through 23 matches and just three points separate the giants of world football, with Los Blancos edging ahead having lost just once all season.
They’re in sensational form too, having won their past five matches having previously struggled to close out matches with seven draws in their opening 18 games.
Then, there’s only FIVE points separating Getafe – the surprise name in third – and seventh-placed Valencia, as the European spots promise to be fiercely contested.
Villarreal in eighth are just a further two points adrift.
At the bottom, Mallorca, Leganes and Espanyol ALL have 18 points, with Celta Vigo just two points above the drop zone in what should be a thrilling finale.
LAST but not least, the Bundesliga could be in for a cracking conclusion too – with just one point separating the top two and four points separating the top four.
Bayern Munich, as is often the case, lead the way on 43 points, with Red Bull Leipzig chasing them all the way.
Borussia Dortmund and Borussia Monchengladbach both have 39 points, with Bayer Leverkusen and Schalke two and four points respectively behind them.
And at the foot of the table, it’s just as tight, with Paderborn and Werder Bremen currently in the two automatic relegation places.
Fortuna Dusseldorf are in the relegation play-off spot, level on points with Werder Bremen, with Mainz, Herth Berlin and Koln all in danger just a few points above them.
Even then, the clubs between eighth and 12th are just a very good – or very bad – run away from being up in the fight for a European spot or dragged into a relegation battle.
Watch this space…