Boxing Day 2020 & The English Premier League

This year of 2020 has been nothing short of a transformational year in the history of mankind — at least since the 21st Century began. As the virus from Wuhan captivated the entire world to be restrained to their homes, everything from trade to sports was affected. As the humanity begun to adapt to the post-COVID era and start their routine life, the virus mutated to take a new form and has been causing mayhem in various parts of Europe, mainly England.

But as England gears up for another low-key lockdown, the hype around the end of the year in top-flight football has nowhere died down. The Premier League, reckoned as the most watched footballing league in the world, is all set to host the Boxing Day fixtures this year again — and there are some big games and huge names up against each other this weekend, which happens to be the last weekend of the year!

In our today’s featured article, we take a look at a detailed guide to the Boxing Day in the English Premier League — the history, the past records of the giants of English football and most importantly, the games to watch out for this year in the Boxing Day weekend. So without much ado, here we go!

What is Boxing Day?

Boxing day has been almost synonymous as the last weekend of the year in the Premier League, but it has got a huge importance attached to it. It all started in the 1830s when the landlords in the English households made it a practice of boxing up gifts on the Christmas eve for their servants. The servants, who had a day-off on the occasion of Christmas, would then go home to pass on the Christmas boxes to their families. That’s how the name ‘Boxing Day’ came into practice.

While there is no different meaning associated with ‘Boxing Day’ in relation to the Premier League, it’s essentially the last game of the year and with almost half the fixtures played before this very day, the results on Boxing day give us a glimpse into who could possibly win or challenge for the title in the next year.

Boxing Day is surprisingly celebrated by the Commonwealth countries and not the usual European Union nations. This includes of course England in addition to Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. To deviate from the topic a bit, Australia also hosts a Boxing Day cricket match as a part of their national team hosting another country for a tour. This year, Australia will be playing India in a Test format fixture as it stands.

All-in-all, Boxing Day sums up the festive or the Holiday season in the Commonwealth nations as they prepare for the next year with a bang of ambitions and resolutions.

Some Premier League Records from Boxing Days

The first ever Boxing Day fixture to be played was way back in 1888 when Derby County played Bolton Wanderers just a day after Christmas. Surprisingly, neither of the sides are currently playing in the Premier League and find themselves in the secondary tiers of English football. Says a lot about Globalization and the business of football evolving over the past two centuries or so! Nevertheless, since 1888, there have been over 3720 Boxing Day fixtures that have been played in England — that’s some number!

There are no prizes for guessing that the two most successful sides in the Premier League history have been the two sides with the best Boxing Day records too — Manchester United and Liverpool Football Club. But the Red Devils actually hold quite a slender lead over their biggest rivals with a 16-point gap on the Boxing Day Points Table. The way Liverpool are playing though, for the past few years, it wouldn’t be surprising if the Reds surpass United in the points tally in the years to come.

If we exclude United for a bit, there are some really crazy numbers and unusual names in the goals scored section with respect to the Boxing Day. After the red half of Manchester, West Bromwich Albion are the second side with the most number of goals on this special day (169) followed by Sheffield United (168) on the third spot. This is very interesting considering the fact that both West Brom and Sheffield United have been promoted recently to the league in the last couple of years.

Talking about the least goals conceded on Boxing Day, there are again some exceptional names cropping up! Brighton & Hove Albion have conceded just 84 goals during their 74 fixtures on Boxing Day which is the least — and in fact, 54 goals less than Manchester United who have played just 21 games more. If we go deeper by calculating an average of goals conceded here, Brighton have been really good defensively on this very day.

Well, this might give something to ponder upon for everyone who takes part in Fantasy Football and even Football Betting on the occasion of Boxing Day. Do not forget to take a look at Mighty Tips where experts from around the world analyze numbers and tactics to offer the best bets to place in football as well as various other sporting events.

Who plays who on Boxing Day this year!

This is the first time since the initiation of the Boxing Day that grounds will be empty and fans will not be able to electrify the stadiums in the Premier League. What a pity. But nevertheless, the schedule does provide some relief to not only the fans in England, but all the supporters worldwide to witness some of the biggest names in the English first division go head to head one last time in 2020.

The Boxing Day weekend in the Premier League starts with Crystal Palace visiting Villa Park to take on Aston Villa, who have been in top form after the 7–2 thrashing of Champions Liverpool at this very venue. But all eyes will be totally on the London Derby as Arsenal take on Chelsea at the Emirates on the very afternoon. While the Gunners are having the worst season in the last four decades or so, everything is forgotten on a Derby Day and especially when the game is on Boxing Day!

Another huge game, probably bigger than the Arsenal-Chelsea one when it comes to the points table, is Leicester City taking on Manchester United at the King Power Stadium. Leicester are second in the league, just a point above third-placed Manchester United and a win for the away side could take them in a touching distance from Champions & League Leaders Liverpool.

The Merseyside is a happy place to be, as the year ends and even on the Boxing Day, at least the red half of it. This is because Liverpool’s tally of 31 points and a 4-point gap over all the other sides in the league means that they will end the year as the table toppers irrespective of them winning or losing on Saturday. With them playing promoted side West Brom at home though, it seems like the Reds are heading for another win as the Scousers sing ‘You Will Never Walk Alone’ from their couch this year.

Though the year of 2020 has been one of turmoil and discomfort all around, Christmas and Boxing Day bring a sigh of relief and a wave of celebration for everyone in the world. This feeling, coupled with some really nice games from the English Premier League, shall set a great tone for the New Year to come.

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Author and content specialist at MightyTips.com

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Aigar Shilvan

Aigar Shilvan

Author and content specialist at MightyTips.com

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