The brand new season of Premier League football has kicked off and supporters of the twenty clubs involved are eager to get back into following their side’s matches – whether it be by attending the games or watching them on television at home or in a pub.
The current Premier League title favourites in the eyes of the bookmakers are Manchester City, who are rated 6/4 to win it this season. It is Pep Guardiola’s second season in charge of City and he is under considerable pressure to win the title this time after a rather underwhelming debut season. City finished third last season but were never in serious contention during the second half of the season – mainly due to a shaky defence and Guardiola’s fixation with attack. During the summer he signed a new goalkeeper, in the form of Ederson, as well as new fullbacks in Benjamin Mendy and Kyle Walker.
However, doubts remain about their strength in the centre of defence, especially if Vincent Kompany is injured, which could hamper their chances. Their local rivals Manchester United are now the second favourites, at 11/4, after an opening day demolition of West Ham at Old Trafford. New £75 million striker Romelu Lukaku scored twice in that match, but the performance of midfielder Nemanja Matic – a steal from rivals Chelsea – was just as impressive.
The capture of Lukaka suggests United could be more effective at converting possession into goals this time, something which cost them dearly during numerous home draws last season, and Jose Mourinho’s focus on powerful, pacey signings shows that the Premier League – rather than Europe – is his main priority this season. Again, it is surely a must for the manager that his side offers a serious title challenge this season, so it is not hard to see why, and United could be real contenders – although we will know better when they face stiffer opposition.
Defending champions Chelsea have slipped to third in the bookies’ rankings – at 8/1 – having endured a torrid summer. They lost out on one of manager Antonio Conte’s top transfer targets when Lukaku snubbed them for United, and are mired in an ongoing transfer battle with Diego Costa. The striker they did sign, Alvaro Morata, marked his debut appearance with a goal – but it was not enough to prevent Chelsea slipping to a shock home defeat at the hands of Burnley. It is very early days but the perception that the club have failed to build on last season’s triumph and that Conte is dissatisfied have worrying echoes of past problems for fans. Given how early in the season it is though, you might prefer to play a football-themed slot machine such as Soccer Safari, rather than betting on the title – at least until the transfer window closes.
If you place a Premier League title bet and give Soccer Safari a spin as well, you could be enjoying a double win when May rolls around.