Most Read Football

Jose Mourinho in the Anfield dugout1

Mourinho shoulders blame for defeat

Under-pressure Jose Mourinho remains confident that Manchester United will finish in the top four despite their defeat to Liverpool.

2

'Pogba's days are numbered'

Roy Keane thinks Paul Pogba will be leaving Old Trafford in the summer after he was left on the bench during the club’s 3-1 defeat against Liverpool.

Xherdan Shaqiri scores for Liverpool against Manchester United3

Super sub Shaqiri sinks United

Substitute Xherdan Shaqiri scored twice to give Liverpool a fully deserved 3-1 victory over Manchester United at Anfield to go back to the top of the table.

Check out today's Paper Talk4

Paper Talk: The Italian job?

Jose Mourinho to Inter Milan, Paul Pogba heading to the exit door - lots more too in a bumper Sunday edition.

Geraint Thomas poses with the SPOTY award5

Thomas wins SPOTY prize

Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, beating F1 champion Lewis Hamilton into second place, with Harry Kane third.

Premier League betting tips: Best bets for champions, top four finish and relegation

Check out our tips for the title, top four and relegation
Check out our tips for the title, top four and relegation

Paul Higham takes a look at the outright markets for the title race, top four scramble and battle against relegation.

Recommended bets

2pts Top 3 in exact order - Man City, Liverpool & Man Utd at 10/1

5pts Arsenal to finish in the top four at 2/1

3pts Cardiff to finish bottom at 9/4

  • For details of advised bookmakers and each-way terms, visit our transparent tipping record

Nobody has defended the Premier League title for a decade, but odds-on favourites Manchester City are hugely fancied to do just that after walking away to the crown last season.

Who will win the Premier League?

Pep Guardiola
Pep Guardiola is odds-on to steer Manchester City to the title again

A best price of 8/11 tells you all you need to know about how strongly Pep Guardiola’s side are fancied to retain the title and it’s hard to argue.

They won at a canter last season, have lost none of their stars, and have added a club-record signing in Riyad Mahrez just for good measure.

Finding reasons why City can’t win is a tough assignment, they lost just twice last season – against Liverpool and Manchester United – and while they may slip up a few more times this season the gap for the rest to make up is huge.

Another year of Guardiola’s coaching will make players like Raheem Sterling, Leroy Sane and Kevin De Bruyne even better and, when you throw in Mahrez along with Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero, that’s a scary thought for the chasing pack.

Trying to pick out games they won last year that they won’t this time around is also tough, and even if they suffer the odd upset, the wiggle room they have to play with from last season is so vast it’s very difficult to make a case for anyone else lifting the trophy in May.

The price is prohibitive, and will only get more so if they get a good start at Arsenal so, for reasons outlined below and the strengths of the chasing pack, a multiple is the best way to go and you're on relatively solid ground, from what we know so far, with the tricast.

Selection: Manchester City

Best bet: Top 3 in exact order - Man City, Liverpool & Man Utd at 10/1


Who will make the top four?

Unai Emery is the new Arsenal boss
New Arsenal boss Unai Emery can spring a top four surprise

A much more competitive market is the chasing pack behind City all vying for those all-important Champions League places, with realistically only Liverpool and Manchester United offering up a serious title challenge.

Jurgen Klopp certainly won the transfer window - no trophy comes along with that but you can only be impressed with how Liverpool have done their business and strengthened in the right areas.

Jose Mourinho, in contrast, has been venting for most of pre-season and the negative vibes he’s sending out threaten to hamper what is still a hugely talented squad in any kind of challenge.

The one little crumb of value here is the general 2/1 on offer for Arsenal to get back into the top four under Unai Emery, who can offer them some much-needed organisation to go along with their attacking flair.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is a huge talent and he and Alexandre Lacazette should get plenty of goals, while if Emery can get the best out of Mesut Ozil and Henrikh Mkhitaryan then there could be a sizeable bounce back from the Arsene Wenger farewell roadshow.

New Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri has a lot to deal with just trying to keep hold of Courtois, Hazard and Willian and that alone puts them in danger of a slump.

A lack of signings for Tottenham doesn’t concern me enough to rule them out of the top four, but it’s asking a lot for a squad full of World Cup stars to tough out a long, hard Premier League season.

Selection: Man City, Liverpool, Man Utd, Arsenal all to make the top four at 6/1

Best bet: Arsenal to make the top four at 2/1

Selected mutiple: Man City, Liverpool, Man Utd, Arsenal top four exact order at 33/1


Who will go down?

David Wagner can at last witness an away goal for Huddersfield
There could be tough times ahead for David Wagner's Huddersfield this season

While it was an incredible effort by Cardiff to get promoted, it’d be a monumental achievement to stay in the Premier League this season. Neil Warnock is out of his depth at this level and while they could well take a few big scalps at home, they’re 9/4 favourites to finish bottom for a reason.

Warnock is analogue manage in a digital age of the Premier League and while he'll get his team running and scrapping for their lives, there's just not enough quality to keep their heads above water.

Who’ll join them is a bit of a quandary, more down to the lack of quality in the lower half of the table last year that saw a host of clubs caught up in relegation squabbles.

Wolves should be fine but Fulham are also good additions to the league and can provide plenty of entertainment for their fans and are taken to stay up.

Southampton and Watford could be in trouble again and if you take a frustrated Rafa Benitez out of the Newcastle equation then they’ll be a lot shorter than 11/2 to go down.

But Brighton and Huddersfield strike me as the biggest candidates for the drop despite them both having some big results last season.

Staying up for them both was a huge achievement – but building on that is always a difficult prospect and I don’t see enough goals in the two lowest scorers who stayed in the Premier League.

Selection: Cardiff, Huddersfield, Brighton to be relegated at 22/1

Best bet: Cardiff to finish bottom at 9/4

Posted at 1343 BST on 06/08/18.


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Most Read Football

Jose Mourinho in the Anfield dugout1

Mourinho shoulders blame for defeat

Under-pressure Jose Mourinho remains confident that Manchester United will finish in the top four despite their defeat to Liverpool.

2

'Pogba's days are numbered'

Roy Keane thinks Paul Pogba will be leaving Old Trafford in the summer after he was left on the bench during the club’s 3-1 defeat against Liverpool.

Xherdan Shaqiri scores for Liverpool against Manchester United3

Super sub Shaqiri sinks United

Substitute Xherdan Shaqiri scored twice to give Liverpool a fully deserved 3-1 victory over Manchester United at Anfield to go back to the top of the table.

Check out today's Paper Talk4

Paper Talk: The Italian job?

Jose Mourinho to Inter Milan, Paul Pogba heading to the exit door - lots more too in a bumper Sunday edition.

Geraint Thomas poses with the SPOTY award5

Thomas wins SPOTY prize

Tour de France champion Geraint Thomas won the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, beating F1 champion Lewis Hamilton into second place, with Harry Kane third.

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