EPL Predictions, Previews & News - Everything you need to know about English Premier League 2018/19 is right here
Defending champions Manchester City will bid to do what no team has managed since Manchester rivals United a decade ago – defend their Premier League title.
Pep Guardiola’s side are odds-on favourites to win the title for the second consecutive year after their record-breaking feats in 2017/18, after the Centurions finished 19 points clear of second-placed United.
With Chelsea appointing Maurizio Sarri as manager, Arsenal turning to Unai Emery for the new season, and Liverpool splashing the cash, however, their rivals have been busy trying to close the gap.
And it’s not just betting on the winners of the 2018/19 Premier League that can earn you money, either, with multiple outright markets available on the world’s biggest league.
Mohamed Salah will look to beat Harry Kane to the Golden Boot for a second consecutive season, for example.
There is also the intriguing question of how Wolves and Fulham will do on their return to the top flight, having impressed in the Championship last season and signed some big-name players this summer.
Want to know how to maximise your chances of profiting from betting on Premier League outright markets this season? Read on for our 2018/19 Premier League betting guide.
Manchester City are odds-on favourites to win the 2018/19 Premier League – for what would be their second consecutive title and fourth in eight seasons. Betway and Ladbrokes are offering the best price of 8/11 on Pep Guardiola’s side.
Here’s a full list of every team’s odds for winning the Premier League outright in 2018/19, and where they finished in 2017/18.
Manchester City – 8/11 (Ladbrokes), 2017/18 champions
Liverpool – 4/1 (Paddy Power), 4th
Man United – 8/1 (Betway), 2nd
Chelsea – 12/1 (10Bet), 5th
Tottenham Hotspur – 16/1 (Betfair), 3rd
Arsenal – 25/1 (Ladbrokes), 6th
Wolves – 250/1 (Bet365), EFL Championship winners
Everton – 250/1 (888sport), 8th
Leicester – 300/1 (Betfair), 9th
Southampton – 500/1 (Betway), 17th
West Ham – 500/1 (Paddy Power), 13th
Crystal Palace – 750/1 (Bet365), 11th
Newcastle – 750/1 (888sport), 10th
Burnley – 750/1 (10Bet), 7th
Bournemouth – 1000/1 (Bet365), 12th
Brighton – 1000/1 (Ladbrokes), 15th
Fulham – 1000/1 (Betway), EFL Championship play-off winners
Watford – 1000/1 (888sport), 14th
Huddersfield – 1500/1 (Bet365), 16th
Cardiff – 2000/1 (Paddy Power), EFL Championship runners-up
Now let’s take a closer look at the pick of those prices….
Pep Guardiola’s side won 32 games last season, scored 106 goals and claimed 100 points – 19 more than nearest challengers Man United.
They were so far ahead of the chasing pack that it is difficult to see any of the other teams catching them, particularly the ease with which they won the Community Shield against Chelsea ahead of the new campaign.
But there are a few things to be cautious of – rivals have strengthened, with Liverpool in particular splashing the cash and City also have the summer’s World Cup counting against them; 16 City players travelled to Russia and some had still not returned to training ahead of the Community Shield. For a system where fitness is so important, that could become an issue.
Their record-breaking achievements last season were also unprecedented. To repeat them – the 100 points in particular – would be a super-human feat. To repeat the title win, however, you would be foolish to bet against a City team still hungry for success.
Manchester City’s nearest challengers this season could be the team that beat them three times in four meetings last season – Champions League runners-up Liverpool.
The Reds have not won the English top flight since before the advent of the Premier League, but Jurgen Klopp has spent heavily this summer with the title the clear goal.
In have come Fabinho, Naby Keita and Alisson, to join the likes of £75m defender Vigil van Dijk and attacking trio Mo Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino.
Liverpool’s problem was not beating the bigger teams so much last season, but losing to lower-ranked sides. Cut those defeats out and, though it’s a big ask and a big gap to close, Klopps’s men could challenge City.
Last year’s runners-up, Manchester United, are third-favourites this time out but manager Jose Mourinho has not been a happy man in pre-season.
United signed midfielder Fred but their lack of strength in depth has been emphasised in pre-season and Mourinho wanted more new faces.
Last season, a bright start against the lower-ranked Premier League teams had raised hopes of a first title win since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement.
If £89m Paul Pogba can continue the fine form he showed in helping France to World Cup victory, United should not be ruled out. But if the inconsistent Pogba, who frustrated Mourinho last season, is back then they already showed last season just how far behind rivals City they have fallen.
The 2016/17 champions fell away dramatically last season – again – but that does not mean they can be discounted, especially with an exciting new manager in tow in Maurizio Sarri.
Sarri has made an inauspicious start to life with the Blues – some uninspiring pre-season performances and the 2-0 Community Shield defeat to Manchester City – but he has not yet had chance to impose his style on this team.
If he can make them click quickly, they will be an exciting team to watch and very much contenders. Their previous wins have come off the back of disappointing seasons too (though on those occasions they did not qualify for the Europa League – they had no European commitments to distract them).
More realistically, however, it may take a full pre-season and a season of Sarri’s own signings to find Chelsea’s missing ingredients – making this year one of transition instead.
The only team other than Manchester City to have finished in the top four in each of the last three seasons, Spurs have been third, second and third in the last three Premier League campaigns.
They have enjoyed some notable results, and – backed by the firepower of Harry Kane up front and the creativity of Christian Eriksen behind him – will definitely be in the mix again.
However, Tottenham last won the top flight in 1961. Mauricio Pochettino’s side have been in the top four but their title challenges have come up short.
A summer of minimal transfer activity means they are still lacking the missing ingredient they desire to turn a top-four place into a more serious title challenge.
The other member of the ‘big six’, Arsenal – in their final two seasons under Arsene Wenger – were nowhere near the title, finishing outside the top four in each of the last two campaigns.
They have a new man in charge now, in Unai Emery, who has signed World Cup quality in the summer and also had a full pre-season to find the best way to make Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette tick together.
With Mesut Ozil and Henrikh Mkhitaryan supplying the creativity behind them, on paper they should be scoring plenty of goals and the change in manager could provide the impetus they need.
Under Wenger, their star had waned but Arsenal remain one of the Premier League’s biggest clubs and this could be the year they come roaring back.
Back in the top flight for the first time since 2012, Wolves are building something very special at Molineux – and they could make a serious impact on the Premier League next season.
Realistically, the title is going to be well beyond them – the odds of 250/1 on them winning the league reflect that – but do not be surprised to see them challenging for Europe.
Ruben Neves’ performances in the Championship last season were so good he earned a spot on Portugal’s World Cup longlist, while Diogo Jota supplied plenty of goals and Helder Costa was hugely impressive too.
Other new faces arriving at the club this summer include Rui Patricio in goal, who supplies international quality behind a defence which finished last season with five clean sheets in six games.
Recommended bet: Despite Liverpool’s summer spending, it is hard to look beyond the defending champions, Manchester City, for another Premier League title. However, Jurgen Klopp’s side could be their closest challengers and a Manchester City/Liverpool straight forecast returns a best price of 7/2 with Betway.
At the other end of the table, newly-promoted Cardiff City are odds-on favourites to go straight back down again, at 7/10 with 888sport.
Here are the relegation favourites:
Cardiff may have finished second in a super-competitive Championship last season, but the Welsh team are not fancied to stay up this year.
Compared to the two clubs they came up with – Wolves and Fulham – their budget is small and their squad, while good enough to come up, looks too thin to stay up.
The Bluebirds only lasted one season last time they came up and given the strength of the teams in the Premier League again this time, it will be difficult for them again this year.
David Wagner’s Terriers were favourites to go down last season but ground out some excellent results in a difficult final few matches to stay up.
They abandoned the style of football which had impressed so much in the Championship, however – and putting ten men behind the ball will only get them so far this time out.
Beating Manchester United at home and drawing away with Manchester City and Chelsea were the reasons they stayed up last season – if they lose those three games this time out, they will be in trouble.
They lacked firepower last season – scoring just 28 goals – and unless Steve Mounie translates his pre-season goalscoring form into Premier League goals, they will struggle to stay up this year.
After a superb start to last season, Watford won just five of their final 25 matches – and only one of their last nine.
One of the players responsible for their fine start, Richarlison, has moved on for a club-record fee and the money has not yet been reinvested in players – all of their transfers were completed before the Brazilian left.
It all leaves Watford staring at a difficult season ahead – in each of their last three Premier League seasons they have finished badly. Unless they get a good start this time, it could prove costly this time.
Fulham can also be backed at 2/1 to go down this season, having only come up through the play-offs last season – but the low price does not reflect the quality of their squad.
The Cottagers made a poor start to last season, without which they would have certainly been promoted automatically – and even then, it was only a defeat on the final day of the season, ending a 23-game league unbeaten run – that cost them.
Having come up through the play-offs, however, they have strengthened this summer with some eye-catching signings – splashing the cash on Jean-Michael Seri, Aleksandar Mitrovic (who was on loan last season) and Alfie Mawson.
Andre Schurrle has arrived on loan too and, while they may still be a signing or two short to cover the players they had on loan last season and have been unable to retain, they should have the quality to stay up.
Retaining stars such as teenage sensation Ryan Sessegnon has been almost as important as splashing out on new players too.
While Brighton struggled at times in their maiden Premier League campaign last season, they were actually only in the relegation zone once before beating Manchester United to seal survival with two games to spare.
They have strengthened this summer too, with Alireza Jahanbakhsh – Iranian international and last season’s Eredivisie top scorer – the most notable new acquisition.
There is little doubt the primary aim remains to stay up, however – something they have the quality to achieve, even if they are among the lower-priced teams to go down.
Glenn Murray’s goals, backed by new signing Jahanbakhsh, and Mathew Ryan’s goalkeeping are likely to vital again in their battle to stay up.
Southampton should have been nowhere near the drop last season, after replacing Claude Puel with Maurico Pellegrino in the summer, and yet in the end they only just stayed up.
Pellegrino’s time in charge was a disaster, as he won just five of his 30 league games at the helm, and it took Mark Hughes to steer them to safety with victory against relegation rivals Swansea in their penultimate game.
They are outsiders to go down this season, but their transfer activity has been minimal – Mohamed Elyounoussi and Angus Gunn their most notable signings, while Dusan Tadic has departed.
They should be good enough to stay up, but then they should have been good enough to stay well clear of relegation last season too – vast improvements are definitely needed.
St James Park is an unhappy place again this summer, despite securing a top-half finish on their return to the Premier League last season.
Rafa Benitez was promised money to strengthen the playing squad as they look to consolidate their Premier League status, but that has not proved the case.
Fan protests against owner Mike Ashley have started again and Benitez has pleaded for more arrivals in a press conference after a crushing friendly defeat.
However, the message has been heeded – new arrivals are expected before transfer deadline day with Danny Ings and Salomon Rondon strongly linked with moves – and that should be enough to keep the Magpies well clear of the foot of the table.
Recommended bet: Cardiff, Huddersfield and Watford are favourites to go down for good reason. Fulham impressed in the Championship and have bought well this summer – showing plenty of ambition – while Southampton should have been nowhere near the drop last season. A relegation treble of Cardiff and Huddersfield and Watford returns 16/1 with Betfair and Paddy Power.
Alongside the team markets, there are plenty of player markets to bet on for the 2018/19 Premier League season too, not least the Golden Boot betting.
Mohamed Salah was top scorer last season, marking his first season at Anfield with 32 league goals to beat two-time, back-to-back defending champion Harry Kane.
Salah, Kane and Manchester City’s Community Shield match winner Sergio Aguero are the three former winners of the award still playing in the Premier League.
Here’s a closer look at their chances, and those of the other leading contenders….
Fresh from winning the Golden Boot at the World Cup, Harry Kane will bid for a fifth consecutive Premier League season of more scoring more than 20 goals.
In fact, he reached 30 in the end last season – marking his fourth consecutive year of improvement after 21, 25 and 29 in the three previous campaigns.
He is favourite to win back his crown this season too, though he may make a slow start to the season – he has never scored a Premier League goal in August and is still returning to match fitness after his post-World Cup break.
After his 32 goals last season, Mohamed Salah will again form part of Liverpool’s exciting attacking trio this time out, with Roberto Firmino (28/1 with 888sport) and Sadio Mane (50/1 with Bet365).
Salah is the main focal point of that attack, however, and if Liverpool launch the title bid they are expected to, the Egyptian will likely be in the goals once again.
He wasted little time getting back to goalscoring action this summer either, proving his dislocated shoulder is well behind him with goals against Manchester City and Napoli in Liverpool’s pre-season friendlies.
In his first game back after the World Cup, Sergio Aguero got straight back to goalscoring action – scoring his 200th and 201st Manchester City goals in the Community Shield win.
Aguero scored 21 Premier League goals last season in just 25 games – he missed two big chunks of the season through injury – and would definitely have scored more had he been fit.
He has retained his place at the focal point of Manchester City’s attack ahead of Gabriel Jesus too, and will definitely have plenty of opportunities with Kevin de Bruyne, David Silva, Leroy Sane and now Riyad Mahrez all pulling the strings behind him.
With most bookmakers paying out four places on an each-way bet too, Aguero is worth at least backing E/W. The only thing that could hold him back would be more injuries or Gabriel Jesus usurping him in the starting line-up.
Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored ten goals in his 13 Premier League appearances last season and now has a full campaign where he will look to replicate his Bundesliga goalscoring feats.
He scored 98 times in 144 league games for Borussia Dortmund before his move to the Emirates and, if Arsenal are to get back into the top four, they will need him to be firing.
He bagged a hat-trick in pre-season too, albeit only against Boreham Wood, and will hope to hit the ground running in the league.
If Unai Emery only opts for one striker, however, he could find himself pushed back (or even dropped) should Alexandre Lacazette rediscover his best form though.
It is easy to forget that Alexandre Lacazette arrived at Arsenal last year with a reputation for goals and a record of 76 in 97 games across his last three seasons for Lyon.
He finished with 14 in 31 games and was behind Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the pecking order by the end of last season.
But, spurred on by his omission from the French World Cup squad, Lacazette has enjoyed a productive summer – with four goals in pre-season.
Aubameyang is favourite to be Arsenal’s top goalscorer this season, but if Lacazette can force his way into the starting line-up, he will surely be one to watch.
If Fulham are to stay up on their return to the top flight, Aleksandar Mitrovic’s goals will be crucial in that regard.
Mitrovic scored 12 times in 17 EFL Championship matches last season, having arrived on loan from Newcastle, to rediscover a goalscoring touch that had evaded him at St James Park.
The Serbian’s aerial prowess makes him a big threat from crosses, while he also showed his goalscoring form on the international stage with six goals in seven games – including one at the World Cup – for his nation this calendar year.
Whether he can score enough to challenge the likes of Kane, Salah and Aguero – given the former two both reached 30 goals last season – appears a long shot, but he should certainly make a bigger impact with Fulham than he managed with Newcastle.
Another striker who will look to show the same goalscoring form he managed in the EFL Championship last season in the Premier League is Diogo Jota, except the Portuguese forward has a real chance of doing that.
Wolves have goals all over the pitch, but he was top scorer last season and is their shortest-priced forward again this year.
With Ruben Neves and Helder Costa supplying the creativity behind him, and Wolves fancied to finish well up the table, he will surely be in the goals.
Again, the biggest thing holding him back from winning the Golden Boot will be the fact the winner is likely to be close to 30 goals again – and that looks beyond a player from a mid-table team.
Last year’s PFA Player of the Year award came down to a two-horse race between the goals of Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah and the creativity of Manchester City’s Kevin de Bruyne.
Salah won, but finished the season trophyless from a team point of view, whereas De Bruyne’s consolation for second place was two domestic trophies and third place at the World Cup with Belgium.
He had the last laugh, clearly, and is now favourite to win his first PFA Player of the Year award this season.
De Bruyne managed eight goals and 16 assists in the Premier League last season, including some incredible passes as he helped lead Manchester City to the title, to 100 goals and to 100 points.
The Belgian continued his form at the World Cup, scoring against Brazil and supplying some inch-perfect defence-splitting passes as the Red Devils finished third in Russia.
Now, back with Manchester City, he will be a key man again this season and – if he continues the same form, including vital goals and man-of-the-match performances against their title rivals – he is hard to look past for player of the year.
Mohamed Salah was the most-hyped player in the Premier League last season and that ended in him winning the PFA Player of the Year award among many others.
And if he helps lead Liverpool into a title chase again this season, he will surely be in the running once again.
As well as his goals, Salah also bagged ten league assists and was undoubtedly the star of Liverpool’s fourth-place finish and Champions League runner-up spot.
Where De Bruyne was perhaps hampered for player of the year by the fact City had so many star players last season, Salah has the advantage of being the stand-out man at Liverpool – and that could work in his favour again.
One of Manchester United’s biggest frustrations last season was the inconsistent form of Paul Pogba, but the £89m midfielder holds the key to any success they hope to have this season.
Having won the World Cup in the summer, with some key performances in Russia too, Pogba now must prove he can replicate that form in the Premier League – on a consistent basis.
He has shown in flashes that he can, so if he can stay motivated to perform week-in, week-out – and Manchester United find his best role in the team – he will be a big player this season.
Another of Manchester City’s PFA Player of the Year nominees last season, it was long overdue recognition for City’s superb Spaniard.
That he continued to perform at a high level despite the extremely premature birth of his son and frequent trips back home to see his wife and newborn child, was a testament to his quality and professionalism.
He will be a key player for City again this season, but Pep Guardiola has already stated the plan is to reduce his workload – having seen how effective he was at the end of last season.
Silva is undoubtedly one of City’s finest players, but his chances of winning the Player of the Year will be reduced if he does not play as regularly.
The PFA Young Player of the Year award is open to anybody aged 23 and under at the start of the Premier League season and last season’s winner, Leroy Sane, is therefore still eligible for the award.
The German winger is favourite but could face stiff competition from some Premier League new boys this time out.
Won the award last season on the back of 15 league assists and ten league goals and now has a point to prove after being left out of Germany’s World Cup squad.
Much is expected of Liverpool’s new signing in midfield, and if he proves one of the key cogs in the Reds’ title challenge he will definitely be in contention.
Nominated last year despite playing in the EFL Championship – the first time anybody from outside the top flight had been – if he can prove his quality in the Premier League he will be a name on everybody’s lips.
Wolves’ Portuguese midfielder pulled the strings as they stormed to the Championship title and, if he produces some of the inch-perfect passes he did last season in the top flight, his stock will rise massively.
Manchester City’s highly-rated teenage star proved he is ready for first-team football with a brilliant display in the Community Shield win. With Kevin de Bruyne and David Silva to come back, however, his opportunities may be limited this season.
The managerial merry-go-round will spring into action as soon as the Premier League kicks off in 2018/19, but who will be first to leave their post?
Claude Puel is favourite to depart from Leicester after rumours he was set to leave at the end of last season, while Rafa Benitez and Jose Mourinho’s unhappy pre-seasons have seen their odds slashed too.
Leicester City’s manager was rumoured to be on his way out at the end of last season, but the Foxes board stuck with him. That puts him under pressure for a good start to the season, however, and he is a short price to be on his way sooner rather than later.
While there is turmoil behind the scenes at Newcastle United, Rafa Benitez has the fans’ backing. If he departs Newcastle it will be because he is grown frustrated at the lack of backing from the board – however, that may be eased by the promise of new signings this week.
We’ve been here before – Jose Mourinho is an unhappy man, and that has proved to be the beginning of the end of the Portuguese manager at previous jobs too.
He grew more and more frustrated at the end of his Chelsea tenure too, and eventually left after falling out with referees, journalists, Eva Carneiro and finally the board.
If he is not backed in the transfer market ahead of the new season, those frustrations are only going to grow as the season begins.
Neil Warnock has a great record for getting teams into the Premier League, but his record is not so good when it comes to keeping them there.
If Cardiff City, as expected, find themselves in trouble early in the season, they could hit the panic button early and turn elsewhere in their bid to stay in the top flight.