It has been a terrible season for Liverpool so far, their progress in the Champions League being the only real high point. Their title defence has been extremely disappointing, though many will point towards mitigating circumstances in the form of season-ending injuries to key players. But despite a disastrous recent run of form – including six consecutive home defeats – Liverpool still remain within touching distance of the Champions League places, and still have a good chance according to

Although on paper and mathematically, Champions League qualification is still a possibility; in reality, it will be a big ask.

As Liverpool have slumped, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City team has clicked into gear and is seemingly running away with the title. Fierce rivals Manchester United have got their act together and look like securing a Champions League place. Leicester City – managed by former Reds boss Brendan Rodgers – have been consistent all season, and should comfortably finish in the top four.

But that fourth spot is still very much up for grabs, and it appears to be a five-way battle between Chelsea, West Ham United, Liverpool, Everton, and Tottenham Hotspur.

Chelsea are very much the favourites. They are currently in that fourth spot and remain unbeaten since Thomas Tuchel took over from Frank Lampard in January. Of their remaining nine games, six are against struggling sides or sides with nothing to play for. However, they also face trips to West Ham and Manchester City, while they also have to play Leicester City at home. There is still the potential for Chelsea to drop points.

West Ham United have been the season’s surprise package, and while it’s unlikely that they will make the Champions League, their run-in is favourable enough for them to qualify for the Europa League. And though Tottenham are still mathematically in touch, their inconsistencies will mean that they are likely to miss out. Indeed, José Mourinho may prioritise glory in the Carabao Cup and Europa League.

City rivals Everton have had a good season under Carlo Ancelotti, but seem to be lacking a big game mentality, meaning that they will be more than likely to miss out.

And then there is Liverpool.

Jürgen Klopp described Monday night’s 1-0 win over Wolves at Molineux as a “dirty three points”, and sections of the media speculated that their victory put them back in contention for Champions League qualification. That may well be true, but their remaining fixtures would suggest that they will need a lot more than a few more dirty points.

Indeed, with fixtures coming up against Arsenal, Aston Villa, Leeds United and Manchester United, if Liverpool are to overhaul Chelsea, they’ll need to be getting back to title-winning form.