We look at who will win a place in Europe from the remainder of the Premier League
We look at who will win a place in Europe from the remainder of the Premier League

Premier League top four finish betting: Analysis, latest betting odds, remaining fixtures & best bets for the race for European places

As the Premier League prepares for its June 17 restart with nine fixtures still to play, we look at each candidate's chances of clinching European qualification.

With Liverpool miles clear at the top, and Manchester City currently awaiting the outcome of their appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport after being handed a two-year European ban by UEFA for breaching Financial Fair Play rules, the top-flight's European race starts at currently third-placed Leicester and, in pure points terms, arguably stretches all the way down to Everton in 12th.

Premier League race for Europe
Premier League race for Europe

Man City's potential removal from the European equation is what makes the race so wide.

To try and slim things down, we're going to stick to three markets - top four, top five and top six finishes - and seven clubs - Leicester, Chelsea, Manchester United, Wolves, Sheffield United, Tottenham and Arsenal.

Sorry Burnley, Crystal Palace and Everton fans, but a line does have to be drawn somewhere.

Leicester | 3rd | 53 points

James Maddison and Jamie Vardy (left to right): Leicester duo celebrate a goal against Arsenal
James Maddison and Jamie Vardy (left to right) have been superb for Leicester this season

Premier League top four finish: 1/6

Premier League top five finish: 1/33

Premier League top six finish: 1/66

Leicester's remaining fixtures:

  • Watford (A)
  • Brighton (H)
  • Everton (A)
  • Crystal Palace (H)
  • Arsenal (A)
  • Bournemouth (A)
  • Sheffield United (H)
  • Tottenham (A)
  • Manchester United (H)

There needs to be a major slump for Leicester not to make the top three (sorry, I know that's not what one of our markets), a collapse for them not to make the top four and a total implosion for them not to make the top five - I'm not even comprehending them falling out of the top six!

Those unlikely scenarios are, quite rightly, reflected in the odds, too.

Brendan Rodgers has done a phenomenal job in his first full season at the King Power, and with the Premier League's top scorer Jamie Vardy leading what is a superbly talented side, I can't see any reason why they won't finish things off and clinch a deserved third place.

All four fixtures against Liverpool and Manchester City have been and gone, so their closing matches look pretty good.

If you have an inkling that the Foxes might slide down the table, and really want to back it, then take a look at their final five fixtures. Should Leicester not return as the force they were before the break, then the prospect of Arsenal, Sheffield United, Tottenham and Manchester United in that final quintet of games will become more daunting as the days go by.

But at 7/2 and 14/1 to finish outside the top four and top six respectively those prices are nowhere near big enough to tempt me.

Verdict: 3rd

Chelsea | 4th | 48 points

Frank Lampard: Chelsea boss watches his side against Southampton at Stamford Bridge
Frank Lampard is in his first season as Chelsea boss

Premier League top four finish: 8/13

Premier League top five finish: 1/5

Premier League top six finish: 1/12

Chelsea's remaining fixtures:

  • Aston Villa (A)
  • Manchester City (H)
  • West Ham (A)
  • Watford (H)
  • Crystal Palace (A)
  • Sheffield United (A)
  • Norwich (H)
  • Liverpool (A)
  • Wolves (H)

Chelsea supporters will undoubtedly have been encouraged by the recent news that they've agreed a deal in principle for German superstar Timo Werner, who is set to join fellow new recruit Hakim Ziyech at Stamford Bridge. But as things stand, and I say that because rules are changing all the time, that duo won't be available until the 2020/21 campaign, so it's a squad primarily made up of Frank Lampard's fledgling youngsters that will have to finish the job and ensure Werner and Ziyech can showcase their talents in next season's Champions League.

And in my opinion, that will very much come down to what happens with Manchester City's appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, because I think Chelsea will end the current campaign in fifth. I put that prediction as much down to what I'm expecting from Manchester United as to what I'm expecting from Chelsea when the season restarts.

The Blues' campaign looked like it had run out of steam in late February until a superb display saw them beat Spurs, only for Lampard's team to be humbled by Bayern a few days later. Then in their defence they roared back with impressive wins over Liverpool in the FA Cup and Everton in the league, so perhaps I'm being harsh.

But a team packed full of young talent and lacking in leadership could well struggle the most in the foreign, sterile environment that the remaining fixtures will be played in.

While Chelsea's games don't look too tricky, they do still have to play Liverpool and Manchester City, with the champions elect included in a finale that will define the outcome to their season.

Yes, a match with probably already-relegated Norwich is in there, but how they fair against Sheffield United and Wolves, as well as Liverpool, will be the determining factor.

Verdict: 5th

Man Utd | 5th | 45 points

Paul Pogba (left ) and Marcus Rashford in action for Manchester United
Paul Pogba (left ) and Marcus Rashford will both be back fit for Manchester United

Premier League top four finish: 7/4

Premier League top five finish: 4/9

Premier League top six finish: 2/9

Manchester United's remaining fixtures:

  • Tottenham (A)
  • Sheffield United (H)
  • Brighton (A)
  • Bournemouth (H)
  • Aston Villa (A)
  • Southampton (H)
  • Crystal Palace (A)
  • West Ham (H)
  • Leicester (A)

Prior to the enforced hiatus, Manchester United were in superb form, unbeaten in 11 games in all competitions and ignited by the late January arrival of Bruno Fernandes. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side will immediately need to pick up where they left off too given their opening two opponents.

A meeting with former boss Jose Mourinho at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium followed by a match against Premier League surprise package Sheffield United means they won't have any time to find their feet again.

But Solskjaer's developing team will perhaps have benefited most from the break in terms of returning players, with world class duo Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford fully-fit and available having been ruled out for the season before we knew 2020/21 would still be going in June and July.

On top of their return, Rashford's 'replacement' when his back injury had seemingly curtailed his season, Odion Ighalo, will be part of helping them try and secure a top-four finish after extending his loan deal from Shanghai Shenhua.

Manchester United's team, and more than that their squad, is starting to look very good indeed.

And while their start to the restarted campaign is tricky, United then have six matches that - on paper - look as straightforward as they could possibly want, before rounding off with a difficult trip to Leicester.

On the face of it, eight points seems like far too much for them to catch up on the Foxes with just nine fixtures left to play, but when they play one another it's not as unrealistic as it first appears.

But I'm not going that far.

Verdict: 4th

Wolves | 6th | 43 points

Nuno Espirito Santo
Nuno Espirito Santo's Wolves have completed a double over Man City this season

Premier League top four finish: 15/2

Premier League top five finish: 10/3

Premier League top six finish: 6/5

Wolves' remaining fixtures:

  • West Ham (A)
  • Bournemouth (H)
  • Aston Villa (A)
  • Arsenal (H)
  • Sheffield United (A)
  • Everton (H)
  • Burnley (A)
  • Palace (H)
  • Chelsea (A)

This may be going against my own prediction, but I like the odds on Wolves across the board.

In terms of value, they are the team I would strongly consider backing. For them to be such outsiders in the top four and five markets, and to even be better than evens for a sixth-placed finish - which is where I'm backing them to finish - is quite surprising to me.

Nuno Espirito's Santo's team have been a picture of consistency since he took over in the summer of 2018. First of all waltzing to the Championship title, then finishing seventh in their first campaign back in the Premier League, and this season being around the sixth-place spot for the majority of the time while also having an impressive run to the last 16 of the Europa League.

Then there are their remaining fixtures. Yes, they play Chelsea in their final game, and have a couple of arguably tricky home matches against Arsenal and Everton either side of a trip to Sheffield United, but none of those stick out as matches you'd be confident backing the opponent in.

The majority of the rest are fairly run-of-the-mill, beginning the restart with meetings against relegation strugglers. Whatever happens in that trio of games, I would still back Nuno and his side to finish in the top six, but a strong start to behind-closed-doors Premier League life and 15/2 to finish in the top four could look like an absolute steal of a price.

Sheff Utd | 7th | 43 points

Chris Wilder celebrates Sheffield United's victory at Norwich
Chris Wilder celebrates another Sheffield United victory

Premier League top four finish: 12/1

Premier League top five finish: 13/2

Premier League top six finish: 11/4

Sheffield United's remaining fixtures:

  • Aston Villa (A)
  • Newcastle (A)
  • Manchester United (A)
  • Tottenham (H)
  • Burnley (A)
  • Wolves (H)
  • Chelsea (H)
  • Leicester (A)
  • Everton (H)
  • Southampton (A)

Sheffield United and Chris Wilder have almost fuelled their season on the knowledge that people would be waiting for their season to hit the buffers, but so far it hasn't. It truly has been an amazing campaign for the newly-promoted Blades, the mere fact they're in contention for European qualification with 10 fixtures - they have a game in hand - to play is quite incredible.

They have defied expectations all term, and will need to continue to do so if they're to find themselves in the Europa League in 2020/21, because multiple factors make their run-in far from straightforward.

Their final 10 matches begins with three straight away games and includes six meetings with sides also currently in the Premier League's top 10.

Of the four fixtures against bottom-half sides, three are away from home, and the one home match is against Everton - 12th, but certainly a top-half team since Carlo Ancelotti took over in December.

I'm not making much of a case here am I. Well that's not my aim, I'm simply mapping out the difficult end to the season that is ahead for Wilder and his men, who have made light work of challenges like that in the opening 28 matches.

I do think it'll be a bridge too far, though, in terms of making the top six. I don't, however, see Sheffield United's season falling to pieces by any stretch of the imagination. I'd be far from surprised to see an end-of-season table with the Blades as high as fifth and with me eating my words.

And more than that, I'd be happy to. Everyone loves an underdog.

Verdict: 8th

Tottenham | 8th | 41 points

Jose Mourinho in discussion with Harry Kane
Jose Mourinho's Spurs will be boosted by the return of Harry Kane

Premier League top four finish: 10/1

Premier League top five finish: 9/2

Premier League top six finish: 6/4

Tottenham's remaining fixtures:

  • Manchester United (H)
  • West Ham (H)
  • Sheffield United (A)
  • Everton (H)
  • Bournemouth (A)
  • Arsenal (H)
  • Newcastle (A)
  • Leicester (H)
  • Palace (A)

Tottenham are the wildcard in this line-up for me.

I'll keep it brief because my reasoning is fairly short and sweet. Prior to the coronavirus shutdown, Spurs were struggling big time. On the one hand, Jose Mourinho simply couldn't find the right formula defensively to get clean sheets.

While there has been an enforced break, and then a very mini pre-season, he has been afforded a period of time without games to work on team shape and defensive structure. That has to have helped.

But more than that, they were struggling because of injuries: Harry Kane, Heung-min Son, Steven Bergwijn, Moussa Sissoko, Ben Davies, Juan Foyth.

Just having Kane back would be massive but Son too, and then perhaps the rest? This could be a completely different Tottenham to the one pre-coronavirus.

I just think there is too much traffic between them and a place in the top six to confidently back it to happen, but I expect fourth to seventh to be extremely tight, with matches against one another perhaps being the difference in the race for Europe.

Spurs have four such matches in their final nine games.

Verdict: 7th

Arsenal | 9th | 40 points

Mikel Arteta celebrates his first victory as Arsenal boss
Mikel Arteta has had a good start as Arsenal boss

Premier League top four finish: 16/1

Premier League top five finish: 7/1

Premier League top six finish: 5/2

Arsenal's remaining fixtures:

  • Manchester City (A)
  • Brighton (A)
  • Southampton (A)
  • Norwich (H)
  • Wolves (A)
  • Leicester (H)
  • Tottenham (A)
  • Liverpool (H)
  • Aston Villa (A)
  • Watford (H)

For Arsenal, read Tottenham, kind of.

Not because the Gunners have lots of injured players coming back, but because they too are a wildcard candidate. What Arsenal will turn up on any given matchday is difficult enough to predict, never mind what Arsenal will turn up after a three-month break because of a pandemic.

Just two defeats in 15 games in all competitions for Mikel Arteta since he became head coach is very encouraging though - but a third of those have been draws. Those draws must become wins in the closing part of the campaign to give them any hope of an unlikely place in Europe next term.

Arsenal are a team I tend to stay away from because of their unpredictable nature, and I don't see enticing enough odds to back them in any three of our markets.

I'm quite excited to see what Arteta's team will look like in 2020/21, but for me they're nothing more than also-rans at this stage and a watching brief is advised.

Verdict: 9th

Sky Bet odds up to date as of 11:00 BST June 12

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