Liverpool have been the big losers in the betting over the last couple of weeks in the race for the Premier League. Brendan Rodgers’ team are now out to 10/1 with Bet365 after recent defeats away to Manchester City and Chelsea.
Despite the fact Arsenal are top going into the new year, and the team leading at this stage of the season has won the league 8 out of the last 9 years, they are still not favourites to win the title. They are only joint second favourites, and even third in the betting with a lot of bookmakers.
This shows there are still plenty of doubters of Arsene Wenger’s team. They have just ground out a great result away at Newcastle, a result that was more down to grit and determination (rather than free flowing football on the immaculate Emirates deck), something the Gunners have regularly been criticised for not doing in the past.
Arsenal are now a best price of 9/2 with Coral (who have a £50.00 free bet for new customers).
Chelsea showed what they are capable of at Stamford Bridge yesterday. They were challenged by Liverpool, and they came through a tough examination. Despite this, inconsistency still looks Chelsea’s biggest foe, as results like the recent defeat away at Stoke highlight.
Even with all this inconsistency, Chelsea are still only 2 points behind Arsenal, and are a best price of 4/1 to win the league with a whole host of bookies.
Liverpool again, just came up short against one of their major rivals. The difference between this Liverpool team and some recent vintages though, is that they beat the teams they are expected to beat. It’s not too often this season that Rodger’s team haven’t despatched the teams from the lower echelons of the Premier League, unlike recent Liverpool teams.
For this reason, I wouldn’t be too down hearted if I were a Liverpool fan. Although they are clearly not the strongest team in the league, if they keep beating the lessor teams, they can still be in the mix come the business end of the season – when anything’s possible.
Onto Manchester United, and although I stupidly wrote David Moyes’ team off in my article at the start of December, I still proceeded to have a silly fiver on them on Betfair at 22/1 a couple of weeks ago.
To be fair that was more for reasons of football trading, than a genuine belief they could win the title. But they have since proceeded to go on a good run, and who knows who they might pick up in the January transfer window. After all, United are only two or three top class players away from being a decent side again.
Are United now back in the title race though? They are now 8 points behind leaders Arsenal, which I could possibly see them making up if they hit form in the second half of the season. It’s the 7 point gap to Manchester City that I see as the major problem.
City for once struggled a bit at home in their last fixture against Crystal Palace. I suppose they can’t hammer everyone at the Etihad Stadium, even Palace. Based mainly on the size and quality of their squad, City are still favourites, at a stand out best price of 23/20 with Boylesports, they are Evens pretty much everywhere else.