Why Man City no longer have Premier League trophy and how Arsenal and City can both lift title

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola poses with the Premier League trophy
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola poses with the Premier League trophy -Credit:Getty Images

If previous Premier League final days are anything to go by, we could be in for a thrilling ride on Sunday. The relegation battle is all-but confirmed, while the race for the Champions League is also sorted.

The only jeopardy heading into the final weekend of the season is the biggest of all - who lifts the Premier League trophy.

Manchester City are the overwhelming favourites, leading by two points and facing a home game against West Ham United. Arsenal are waiting in the wings, needing anything other than a City win to have a chance of lifting the title as they face Everton at the Emirates Stadium.

As is always the case on the final day, all matches will kick off at the same time, which will lead to lots of TV channel-hopping at home and lots of mobile phone calls and messages for those in stadia.

While in the past there would be a helicopter on standby to transport the Premier League trophy from one ground to another if required, that is not the case now. In fact, come Sunday, Arsenal and Manchester City would lift a completely different trophy from the other team.

Confused? Well don't be, there's a very simple explanation - the Premier League has two identical trophies!

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The one Manchester City lifted on the final day of the season last year was with the champions throughout the 2023/24 season, while the other identical trophy was kept at Premier League headquarters for the league to use during the campaign - for TV appearances and commercial and marketing opportunities et cetera.

That means that no matter the outcome on Sunday, both sides can lift the silverware above their heads without the need for it to be transported between stadia.

There is also another interesting story to tell when it comes to City, they no longer have the trophy in their possession. They may have won the title in 2022/23 and are able to keep the trophy for a year, but they have already handed it back to the Premier League, ready to potentially lift it again.

Premier League rules state: "The champions must return their trophy to the Premier League at least three weeks before their final league match of the season."

So there you have it. No team has the trophy at the moment and both teams could end up lifting a different - albeit identical - piece of silverware on Sunday.