After a highly eventful offseason where England’s National Team came so close to ending its major tournament drought, the best league in the world is back!
Don’t worry if the English Premier League season has snuck up on you, the action in Tokyo has stolen plenty of eyeballs but six days after the Closing Ceremony, Brentford will make their top flight debut against Arsenal.
The big question heading into this season is whether or not the chaos at both ends of the table will replicate itself with plenty of competition for a Champions League place and a number of sides looking to avoid relegation to the Championship.
Manchester City will be out to defend their title and go back to back for the second time in five seasons but a number of clubs will be looking to take the title off them.
We have a whole lot of Premier League markets available on our website and we will take you through the best bets ahead of the upcoming Premier League season.
Outright & Dual/Straight Forecasts
It we were just doing straight predictions on who will finish where, Manchester City would be my choice to take out the title, but at $1.67 odds they are a horrible value bet.
Chelsea and Liverpool sit on the next line of betting at $6 while Manchester United could possibly knock them off as well at $9.
Instead of taking what still seems like a tall order, I’ll dip into the Dual Forecast market to find some value.
The City-Chelsea Dual Forecast market at least provides some insurance in the event of City having a down season (by their standards).
After all, Chelsea were phenomenal under the tutelage of Thomas Tuchel last season following his appointment guiding them from eighth to fourth.
Not to mention Kai Havertz will be better positioned after a season in England and could be in line for the player of the season if all goes well.
Back City-Chelsea Dual Forecast @ $3.00
Top 4 Finish
In terms of the predicted Premier League table, the makeup of the top four feels like a fait accompli before a ball is kicked, if not the exact finishing order.
City, Chelsea, Liverpool and United are seen as locks to finish in a Champions League placings with United at the longest odds of $1.30.
Surprisingly (for some), Leicester is the next cab off the rank at $4.50 and a worthwhile value bet having spent 36 of the 38 matchweeks last season in fourth or better before one win from five in May dropped them down to fifth.
Perhaps Brendan Rodgers has learned his lesson and perhaps this season they will not have an FA Cup Final to work around in the closing matches.
At that price they are worth a punt.
As for Tottenham ($5), they are a stay away until the Harry Kane situation resolves itself, in the unlikely event that he can be convinced to stay they suddenly become a value option at that price.
Their North London neighbours Arsenal ($6) added some quality but still look like a club that is a year or two away, although you could talk yourself into backing them with no European football to distract them this season.
Everton ($11) has the quality to challenge but the big question will be whether or not Rafa Benitez can build on the platform laid down by Carlo Ancelotti, at double digit odds I’m happy to take a shot on him being able to.
West Ham ($13) were the story of the season last year coming so close to earning a Champions League place but will have to settle for the Europa League.
That may in fact harm them as we have seen with several English overachievers, they just don’t have the depth to fight on two fronts and a drop off seems inevitable.
Back Leicester to Finish in the Top 4 @ $4.50
Back Everton to Finish in the Top 4 @ $11
Top 6 Finish
If there was ever a market to make a profit betting on Arsenal as opposed to against them, this is where it will be.
It is stunning to see them at over even money to make the top six and while they still lack some top end quality, Mikel Arteta has the squad to take care of business and return to European football through a top six finish here, especially if they get a deal for James Maddison or Martin Odegaard over the line.
In the likely event that West Ham drops off from last season, there is a spot to be filled and Arsenal look like the best placed of the trailing bunch to take advantage of that opening.
Unless Tottenham can find a suitable replacement for Kane (possibly Lautaro Martinez) they seem like they are going to be stuck on the outside looking in.
It would be foolish to completely write off Leeds in their second season back, especially with Elland Road likely to produce one of the best atmospheres of the season.
Their current price of $5.00 however is just too short to back and there is more value in other markets.
Back Arsenal to Finish Top 6 @ $2.25
Top Half Finish
Let’s call it what it was, Wolves had a season from hell last year and still managed to never really be in danger of relegation.
Losing Raul Jiminez to a fractured skull in November was a massive blow but he is set to return to the starting team this weekend, giving a stagnant attack a major boost.
With former manager Nuno Espirito Santo at Tottenheam, the new boss Bruno Lage should be able to revitalise their attack and have Wolves pushing further up the table.
There may be a case for a side like Burnley or Newcastle ($5.50) to be a decent bet at that price but not one that is strong enough to convince me to back it.
Back Wolves to Finish Top Half @ $2.88
Bottom Half Finish
There are 11 clubs that can reasonable expect to finish in the top half of the Premier League table.
It is also worth mentioning that finishing 11th in that race is a bottom half finish for this market.
I have West Ham as the odd team out not because of a lack of quality but because of the strain of the Europa League.
Combine that with Jesse Lingard returning to Manchester United after the end of his loan and I see West Ham having to dig themselves out of a hole at Christmas.
Back West Ham to Finish Bottom Half @ $2.00
The remaining nine Premier League clubs could all conceivably go down if one or two things don’t break their way.
It does not seem likely that we will have the relegation race solved a few weeks from the end of the season like the last campaign.
Naturally you would expect one of the promoted sides to go straight back down and Norwich appears to be the side in the most dire position of those clubs.
Unfortunately, at $1.91 there isn’t a lot of value and they are $4.00 favourites to finish dead last.
Brighton was far from impressive last season with the side winning just nine games however their 14 draws showed they can at least scrap their way through a season, although their fortune is going to run out eventually.
The market is far more confident in Brighton’s ability to survive and I’m happy to take them on at that price.
Rounding out the Championship bound trio (for this preview anyway) is a Burnley side that flirted with relegation last year, finishing in 17th place.
Their odds are just begging to be taken to not only be relegated but finish bottom.
Back Burnley to be Relegated @ $3.40
Back Brighton to Be Relegated @ $8.50
Back Burnley to Finish Bottom @ $9.00
Top Promoted Club
It’s a three horse race in this market and Brentford has been installed as the favourite to top the three new sides.
If you are reading this preview sequentially you would know that Norwich is off my radar since I’m backing them to go straight back down and are worth crossing off as well.
By default almost, I’m finding myself drawn to Watford at that price.
Back Watford to be the Top Promoted Club @ $3.00
Best Without the Big Six
The concept of the Premier League’s “Big Six” looks outdated already with Arsenal and Tottenham seemingly falling away from their one-time peers.
Leicester is easily the best of “the rest” and should be challenging to not only replace the North London duo in the upper echelon of English football, but possibly even breaking into the top four.
Back Leicester @ $2.63
If Harry Kane makes his way to Manchester City, he will be a near lock for the Golden Boot award and should easily top his return of 23 from last season.
If/when that happens his price of $3.75 to be the top Premier League goalscorer becomes a steal and even if he stays at Spurs, health is all that will stop him featuring near the top of the list again.
Mo Salah at $5 is a worthwhile shot to bounce back after a down year (by his standards) especially with Liverpool likely returning several of their injured stars.
There is a clear gap to the chasing pack behind them however most contenders have a sharpshooter they will be heavily reliant upon.
If (and it’s a big if) everything goes to plan at their respective clubs, taking a long shot on a Patrick Bamford ($26), Dominic Calvert-Lewin ($26) or Edinson Cavani ($34) might be a worthwhile value bet too.
On top of that, the Premier League Transfer Window is still wide open and there is every chance that Romelu Lukaku could sign for Chelsea (again) which would certainly shake things up, as would Lautaro Martinez joining Tottenham or Arsenal.
Bottom line, with the squads as they are currently constructed, a two horse race between Kane andSalah seems like the safest bet, but don’t lock in to those two if things change.
Back Harry Kane to be Top Goalscorer @ $3.75
Back Mohamed Salah to be Top Goalscorer @ $5.00
Back Patrick Bamford to be Top Goalscorer @ $26.00
FULL SEASON PREDICTION
1 – Manchester City
2 – Chelsea
3 – Liverpool
4 – Manchester United
5 – Leicester
6 – Arsenal
7 – Everton
8 – Leeds
9 – Tottenham
10 – Wolves
11 – West Ham
12 – Aston Villa
13 – Watford
14 – Crystal Palace
15 – Newcastle
16 – Brentford
17 – Southampton
18 – Brighton & Hove Albion
19 – Norwich
20 – Burnley