Posted on July 31st, 2018
Excitement is mounting ahead of the 2018/19 Premiership season and the big clubs are spending heavily in a bid to close the gap on champions Man City. Liverpool have splashed the cash to shore up several key positions and they are considered the most likely team to challenge Pep Guardiola’s men. But Man Utd and Chelsea could also be preparing further forays into the transfer market and both sides have plenty of quality. Tottenham have also done well to tie down key men Harry Kane and Mauricio Pochettino to new contracts, while Arsenal are a wildcard under new boss Unai Emery, so it should be an intriguing season.
Bookmakers have released odds on who will finish in the top three automatic Champions League places and it makes for interesting reading. Man City are just 1/20 to secure a top three finish, while Liverpool are only 1/3 after snapping up Alisson, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xerdan Shaqiri. But then it gets interesting. Man Utd are 10/11 and expected to complete the top three, but then Chelsea are 13/8, Tottenham are 2/1 and Arsenal are 7/2. When you look at the top four, Arsenal are the distinct outsiders once again.
Check BetOnline for the best odds on the Premier League and you will see that Arsenal are big underdogs in their first two games of the season, which see them take on Man City and Chelsea. They are expected to undergo a year of transition under Emery, and they may struggle to break back into the elite group as the new manager picks up the pieces following Arsene Wenger’s departure. Man City and Liverpool really should both finish in the top three given the money they have spent and the talent available to both managers. Man Utd could join them if Jose Mourinho can inspire Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku to hit the heights they achieved at the World Cup, but the odds are not particularly attractive on them. The two most intriguing teams to consider are Tottenham and Chelsea.
Spurs have not yet made any significant moves in the transfer market, but they have kept hold of key players and that could prove to be even more significant. England captain Kane will still be leading the line, flanked by Christian Eriksen and Dele Alli, backed up by a very strong spine, with Pochettino in the dugout. Toby Alderweireld may depart, but Davinson Sanchez is going from strength to strength, and Tottenham would probably buy another defender to replace the Belgian. These players have had many years now to gel into an effective unit, they are all in the prime of their careers and there can be no excuses for further failure to secure silverware. Tottenham are outsiders to finish in the top three or four, but they have a brilliant starting 11 and they look a really interesting choice to gatecrash the party.
Chelsea could also rally and launch a serious assault on the Premiership title. The Blues have made a habit of winning the league every other year: they lifted the trophy in 2014/15, flopped the following year, won it in 2016/17 and then struggled last year, so it could be time to win it again. New coach Maurizio Sarri should galvanise the squad, while Jorginho could become a great addition alongside N’Golo Kante and David Luiz could be like a new signing after settling a dispute with the club. Chelsea appear to have won the battle to hold onto star player Eden Hazard, and they are linked with the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Christian Pulisic to supplement his talents. The race to finish in the Champions League places looks fascinating and Chelsea could prove an inspired choice, but right now Spurs offer the best value.