After England’s international football team raised the nation’s hopes at the 2018 World Cup, there is likely to be millions bet on the 2018/19 Premier League this season. The new season kicks-off on Friday 10 Aug as Manchester United take on Leicester, and it will be interesting to see whether one of England’s stars of the World Cup, Harry, Maguire, lines up for his current club Leicester or Manchester United.
However, we’re concentrating our pre-season efforts on trying to find the value in the Premier League Winner markets and the Premier League Top Goalscorer market.
Premier League Winner
Premier League Winner Betting: Manchester City 8/11, Liverpool 9/2, Manchester United 7/1, Chelsea 14/1, Tottenham 16/1, Arsenal 25/1
Manchester City dominated last season with a record points total of 100-points, which was five points better than Chelsea’s previous record which was set in the 2004/5 season. In achieving that record, City also finished 19-points ahead of neighbours Manchester United, which equates to six wins and a draw more than their nearest rivals.
Therefore, it’s no great surprise to see City quoted at a best price of 8/11, and much shorter with most bookies. Last year’s win was City’s third Premier League title in seven seasons. However, none of them have been won in consecutive seasons. Indeed, only United 1999/2000 and 2000/2001, Chelsea 2004/2005 and 2005/2006, and United 2007/2008 and 2008/2009 have won back-to-back titles this century. However, if City don’t win back-to-back Premier League Titles – who will?
Last year’s fourth Liverpool are next best in the betting, and it’s easy to see why as manager Jurgen Klopp has spent heavily this summer. Liverpool have also looked a better team since the arrival of Virgil van Dijk in January, as he added some much-needed strength in defence to go with the attacking prowess of Salah, Firmino, and Mane. Klopp has since added £67 Million goalkeeper Alisson, Keita, Fabinho, and Shaqiri, and it’s easy to see why the bookies have been inundated with each-way bets on Liverpool to win the 2018/19 Premier League.
Meanwhile, it was well-documented last season that Jose Mourinho’s teams usually do best in Mourinho’s second season in charge at a club. However, it was a trophy-less seasons for United last season and it’s hard to see why they should close the gap on their neighbours this season in Mourinho’s third season in charge.
Chelsea have won two of the last four Premier League titles but, after winning it for Antonio Conte in his first season in charge at Chelsea, they were poor last season as they finished fifth and missed out on Champions League football for this season. They did win the FA Cup, but that did not stop the anticipated departure of Conte.
New manager Maurizio Sarri is an interesting replacement as he’s yet to steer any team to major honours, but Napoli played a lovely style of football in finishing second to Juventus in Serie A last season. Sarri’s first problem will be keeping hold of the likes of Hazard and Kante but, even if he does, Chelsea’s players may need time to adjust to a new style of play.
Meanwhile, despite finishing third last season, Tottenham are only fifth favourites this season. That’s because they’ve yet to make any notable signings since last season, and the consensus is they rely too heavily on Harry Kane to get the lion’s share of their goals. They’ve also appeared to wilt under pressure at crucial stages in the last two seasons and the title may be beyond them.
It’s incredible to think Arsenal are 25/1, and some may be willing to take a chance on the Gunners now they’ve replaced Arsene Wenger with former PSG manager Unai Emery. However, like Chelsea, it may take Arsenal time to get going under a new manager.
Therefore, whilst Manchester City will surely be tough to beat, it could be worth siding each-way with Liverpool. Liverpool have an easier-looking start than City, as they play West Ham, Crystal Palace, and Brighton in their first three matches. Meanwhile, City have a tester straight away as they travel to Arsenal for their opening fixture.
Premier League Without Man City
Premier League Without Man City Betting: Liverpool 7/5, Manchester United 5/2, Chelsea 5/1, Tottenham 6/1, Arsenal 9/1
Alternatively, if you’re convinced Man City will win back-to-back Premier League Titles, you might want to consider backing Liverpool to win without Manchester City.
Liverpool To Win Without Manchester City @ 2.40 Unibet
Premier League Top Scorer
Premier League Top Goalscorer Betting: Harry Kane 11/4, Mo Salah 6/1, Pierre-Emerich Aubameyang 9/1, Romelu Lukaku 10/1, Sergio Aguero 10/1, Gabriel Jesus 14/1, Alexandre Lacazette 25/1, Alvaro Morato 33/1, Riyad Mahrez 100/1
Harry Kane may have failed to land a Premier League Golden Boot hat-trick last season but, after securing the 2018 World Cup Golden Boot award, he’s favourite for the 2018/19 Premier League Top Goalscorer market.
Kane only needed 25 goals to be crowned the Premier League top scorer in 2015/16, whilst he scored four more than anyone else in 2016/17 when he won the award for a second time with 29 goals. However, whilst he improved that tally by one last season, he had to settle for second behind Mo Salah. If Kane avoids injury, he looks sure to be involved again; the question is whether he’s value at 11/4?
Many punters may opt to back both Kane and last year’s winner Salah, but Salah looks the better value at 6/1. He does have to prove he’s not a one-hit wonder, but you could, equally, argue that he’ll improve again this year, especially as Liverpool could be a much stronger team this season. It’s also worth noting that Salah might have only beat Harry Kane by two-goals with his haul of 32 goals, but the third highest scorer only scored 21 goals.Therefore, it’s hard to imagine him not finishing in the each-way places unless he gets injured.
Third-place last season went to Sergio Aguero, and his total of 21 goals was one higher than his previous season’s total of 20, but lower than his two previous seasons’ totals of 24 and 26. If keeping his place in City’s starting line-up, he could well make a bold bid to reclaim a title he won in 2014/15, but City have plenty of other attacking options at their disposal.
The Arsenal pair of Pierre-Emerich Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette also deserve a mention as both finished last season strongly. Aubameyang scored seven goals in Arsenal’s last eight matches, whilst Lacazette scored five goals in the last seven matches. Both could improve this season, especially Aubameyang who has proved himself at a high-level with 98 goals in 144 appearances at Borussia Dortmund.
Meanwhile, Romelu Lukaku has proven himself in the Premier League, though last year’s total of 16 goals for Manchester United was disappointing considering he had scored 25 goals for Everton in the previous season. He could land each-way money if United play to his strengths more, but that’s debatable.
The other player that catches the eye at big odds, after his move to Manchester City, is Riyad Mahrez. He wasn’t a prolific scorer at Leicester but, if he starts regularly at City, he may be capable of at least matching Raheem Sterling’s haul of 18 goals last season, especially considering the amount of chances Sterling missed.
However, with Liverpool looking an improved team on paper this season, Mo Salah must be excellent each-way value to at least match last season’s goal-scoring exploits, and there’s a possibility that he’ll get even more chances if Liverpool’s new creative talents gel quickly.
Premier League Top Goalscorer Prediction: Mo Salah (each-way) @ 7.00 Unibet