Premier League: Jesus to answer prayers…

The new Premier League season starts tonight, a little earlier that usual with the World Cup occurring mid-season, and we’re going to suggest a few season-long bets to keep us occupied through the whole campaign.

First up is the race for the Golden Boot. Favourite this season is Manchester City’s Erling Haaland. He is a proven goalscorer in the Bundesliga and is sure to get plenty of chances given the talent behind him. However, he could take some time to settle in and he does have a poor injury record, enough reasons to steer us away given his short price.

Mo Salah’s record at Liverpool is impressive, and the Egyptian looked in good form during the Community Shield, but we question how many goals new Reds striker Darwin Nunez will snatch from him.

Tottenham’s Harry Kane must also have a chance, but at greater odds we’re going to take a chance with his north London rival Gabriel Jesus. The Brazilian has just joined the Gunners and has looked very sharp in preseason. He may feel he has a point to prove after being allowed to leave City, he is assured of his place as the spearhead of a team full of creative talent, and doesn’t have Champions League football to divert his attention. At 12/1, we think he offers value.

The second market we’re going to have a dabble in is who languishes at the bottom of the table on Christmas Day.

The three promoted teams lead this market, understandably. However, they all have short prices, and are likely to start the season full of vim and vigour as they enter the promised land.

Southampton ended last season with four defeats from their last five games and have to integrate a number of low-profile signings. While we’re not sure they will go down, we think the 8/1 on offer that they lie bottom towards the end of the year offers value.

Finally, there’s the season handicap market.

Manchester City and Liverpool are likely to set the standard again this season, with City finishing the last campaign on 93 points, one ahead of the Reds. If we assume they both maintain that sort of pace, Nottingham Forest with a 51-point handicap would need to gain just over 40 points to be in the running.

It’s true that they are among the favourites to be relegated, but at 16/1 they are a nice price to outperform.

Recommendations:

Golden Boot: Jesus to win, 1 pt, at 12/1, bet365

Bottom at Xmas: Southampton to win, 1 pt, at 8/1, BetVictor

Season Handicap: Nottingham Forest with a 51-point handicap, 1 pt, at 16/1, SkyBet

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