We are now barely four weeks away from the start of the EPL season, as fans look forward to the most keenly-contested season living memory. With some exciting managerial arrivals likely to spend in excess of £1 billion this summer and globally renowned players such as Paul Pogba expected to arrive in the Premier League, the destiny of next year’s crown is arguably harder to predict than at any other point in history.
While current (and surprise) champions Leicester City have recently broken their own transfer record with the signing of striker Ahmed Musa for £16 million, they are not considered among the favourites to retain the title next season. In fact, you can get odds of 25/1 for the Foxes to win the EPL in 2017, while they are only 33/1 to be relegated. This highlights the competitive nature of the season ahead and the challenges facing some of the nation’s top clubs.
The EPL Favourites: Who are the Top 3?
So as we consider sports betting for the year ahead, who exactly are the favourites to lift the EPL crown next season? Here are the top three: –
Manchester City, 5/2
Under the stewardship of Pep Guardiola, Manchester City are expected to become a domestic and European superpower next season. They can be backed at an average price of 5/2 to win the EPL title, as the Spaniard brings his own unique philosophy to the club while also serving as a beacon to some of Europe’s top players. Ilkay Gundogan and Nolito have already been signed for an estimated total of £55 million, while a host of other players are also being linked with a move to the Etihad.
While some concerns remains about Guardiola’s ability to adapt to the rigours of the EPL and his failure to deliver the Champions League trophy during his time at Bayern Munich, he is sure to have some kind of impact at City. His side are certainly favourites for the title, albeit by a narrow margin among most bookmakers.
Manchester United, 7/2
The renewal of hostilities between Guardiola and the returning Jose Mourinho is a mouth-watering prospect for EPL fans, especially with both coaches almost guaranteed to deliver success wherever they go. While Mourinho’s Manchester United side are a close second to neighbours City when it comes title odds, however, the Reds have arguably created an edge in the transfer market by signing defender Bailly, Armenian forward Henrikh Mkhitaryan and the incomparable Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
With Juventus star and former United midfielder Paul Pogba also mooted to be on the point of joining for a world record £100 million, Mourinho’s men may actually offer the best value in the title charge.
While last season may have represented an incredible opportunity for Arsenal to end their 12-year title hiatus, their second place finish above local rivals Tottenham offered the Gunners at least some consolation. This has resulted in the club being third favourites for the EPL title, although fans are growing increasingly concerned by an all-too familiar lack of transfer activity.
With a proposed move for Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette having yet to materialise and speculation suggesting that Alexis Sanchez could be on his way to Juventus, the Gunners are running the risk of standing still while their rivals spend big. So although Arsenal’s status as third favourites for the title seems fair at present, Arsene Wenger’s failure to bolster his squad could see this change dramatically as the weeks progress.