The Premier League is back, and we’ve trawled the markets for our best bets of the opening weekend, including a 25/1 acca.
Banker of the Weekend: Wolves to beat Everton at 11/8
Everton’s late transfer splurge may or may not pay dividends across the season, but it’s fairly unlikely to help them out too much on Saturday beyond creating a general mood of goodwill.
That’s already in plentiful supply at Wolves, who have to be a contender for strongest promoted side in history. Promoted sides generally start the season well; by definition the mood at the club is usually pretty decent, and the team has become used to winning games albeit at a lower level.
With the quality running through this Wolves team the chance to hit Everton before Marco Silva’s new signings and new ideas have time to bed in looks a good one at a price way bigger than evens.
Long Shot of the Weekend: West Ham to beat Liverpool at 13/1
Liverpool have had a cracking transfer window and made some stellar signings. But West Ham have not exactly sat on their hands and look sure to be far stronger than last season with Felipe Anderson a particularly eye-catching addition.
Everyone is telling Liverpool they’re genuine title contenders now after bringing in Naby Keita, Fabinho, Alisson and Xherdan Shaqiri, and that brings its own pressure. You don’t want to make a mess of what is on paper a straightforward opening game after a summer of hype.
Clearly, Liverpool should win. But a dangerous West Ham side under a manager as shrewd as Manuel Pellegrini should not be dismissed at double-figure quotes. The Hammers have a win and two draws from their last four trips to Anfield so won’t travel in fear.
Goalscorer of the Weekend: Jamie Vardy to score anytime against Man United to 11/4
Manchester United failed to get the centre-back Jose Mourinho made it repeatedly plain he felt they needed this summer. It’s hardly a ringing endorsement, and now they start the season up against a man who has broken the 20-goal barrier in two of the last three seasons and makes a habit of scoring against the biggest clubs.
Remarkably, Vardy got on the scoresheet in 10 of his 12 Premier League appearances against the ‘big six’ last season. Even with the loss of his Riyad Mahrez supply line, quotes of 11/4 for him to make a goalscoring start of the season look generous here given all is not well at United.
Acca of the Weekend: Chelsea, Wolves and Man City all to win and Newcastle to draw with Spurs at 25.18/1
We’ve already made the case for Wolves, while Chelsea have recruited shrewdly and should be too strong for a Huddersfield side that will struggle to repeat last year’s heroics. Man City can hit the ground running as they start their title defence against a new-look Arsenal who will need time, while neither Newcastle nor Spurs are full of good cheer after problematic transfer windows. The spine of Spurs’ team are also only just back in training after lengthy World Cup exertions.