Nike have launched the latest version of the official Premier League match ball for the final stretch of the 2020/21 season, with the design intended to reflect the increased intensity of the competition in the run-in.
The Nike Flight ball was initially released last summer, replacing last season’s Nike Merlin, and the bold and unmissable circle pattern on the updated design is reminiscent of the Total 90 Aerow balls that were used in the Premier League between 2004 and 2008.
The new graphic is supposed to represent the intensity of the home straight of the 2020/21 season, where the focus is sharpened and the Premier League trophy is in sight.
The first game that will use the new ball is Leeds’ visit to Wolves on Friday 19 February, which marks the start of gameweek 25 of the campaign. That round of fixtures will also include the Merseyside derby between Liverpool and Everton as well as Arsenal hosting Manchester City.
City are currently favourites to get their hands on the Premier League trophy, which would be a fifth over a ten-year period for the club. They currently hold a seven-point lead over Manchester United with a game in hand and have won their last 11 in a row.
The battle for top four places is much fiercer, with only four points separating fourth-placed Liverpool from Tottenham in ninth in the current table. Arsenal are just two points further back in tenth.
At the bottom of the standings, it is difficult to see Sheffield United or West Brom survive into next season, adrift of safety by 14 and 12 points respectively. Fulham have a slightly better chance of staying up as they are seven points off 17th place with 15 games to play.
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The ball will be available to purchase from 18 February at nike.com.