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Will Crystal Palace's Tony Pulis get Manager of Year award ahead of Liverpool's Brendan Rodgers?

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The 3-2 win by Liverpool against Norwich on Easter Sunday gives the Reds a five point cushion at the top of the Premier League and a nine point cushion on third place Manchester City who have two games in hand.

Even if City beat West Brom in Monday Night's televised game, and win that game in hand, they will be three points behind Liverpool with just three games left.

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers knows that winning the next three games - Liverpool have won their last 11 on the spin - will land him the first title for the Anfield club since they topped the table in 1989/90 season. Liverpool have never won the Premier League and it would seem fitting in a year which marks the 25 year anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy if Liverpool were to triumph.

Liverpool were 33/1 also-rans for the title at the start of the season, but as favourites Manchester City and long time leaders Arsenal and then Chelsea have faltered Liverpool have relentlessly kept up the pressure.

The achievement must ensure Rodgers lifts the Manager of the Year title at the League Managers Association (LMA) awards ceremony on 12th May - the day after the season ends. The only obstacle might be a home defeat to Chelsea next weekend, but if Liverpool can avoid defeat in that match the title - and the manager of the Year accolade will be Rodgers.

But if for some reason Liverpool were to falter, and LMA votes can be cast until the last kick of the season, surely Tony Pulis at Crystal Palace would also be a worthy winner? Five straight wins have ensured Palace will be playing Premier League football next season.

Yet when Pulis took over in December with Palace rock bottom that prospect looked bleak. Yet under Pulis Palace have gained an incredible 43 points total and are now 11th.

Pulis has never been relegated as a manager in a long career, that has taken in clubs like Gillingham, Plymouth, Portsmouth and Bristol City before he made his name guiding Stoke to the Premier League and keeping them there for five season until being removed last season.

If Manchester City or Chelsea were somehow able to rest the title away from Liverpool in the last three weeks of the season it is unlikely that Jose Mourhino or Manuel Pellegrini would be seen as worth winners by most and Pulis would be firm favourite then.

JB

 

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