After the first month of the 2015-16 English Premier League, everything went Manchester City’s way. Things have changed considerably over the last several fixtures, however, and now the league title race is wide open. The Citizens remain the favorites in the EPL futures, but aren’t the lock they looked like short weeks ago.
2015-16 EPL Title Futures (as of Oct. 1, 2015):
Manchester City 10/11: Man City (5-0-2, 15 pts) lost their last two games in the EPL. The team seemed destined to build a big lead at the top of the table after winning the first five matches on the season but a 4-1 loss to Tottenham has left many wondering if they have what it takes to win the title. The losing streak has allowed bitter rival Man United to vault them at the top of the standings. Now they’ll have to juggle a tough Champions League schedule with their EPL ambitions and do it all with a manager on the hot seat.
Arsenal 4/1: Though they’re fourth in the table (4-1-2, 13 pts), the Gunners remain second in the odds after seven fixtures. Arsenal’s fans are less optimistic about the team’s chances than the oddsmakers and are growing tired of manager Arsene Wegner’s poor decisions. They bounced back from a loss at Chelsea (2-0) with a nice away win over Leicester, though (5-2), and will hope to build some momentum off the offensive outburst.
Manchester United 9/2: The Red Devils (5-1-1, 16 pts) could be the most intriguing bet of all. They currently sit atop the table, one point clear of City. The oddsmakers clearly don’t think United can sustain this pace for the entire season. Even so, their odds right now look to have the most value. The problems for Man U early in the year were on offense, but they look to have turned a corner, scoring 11 goals in their last four matches (all competitions). If they can keep finding the back of the net, their solid defense will make them very tough to beat week-in and week-out.
Chelsea 15/2: Chelsea (2-2-3, 8 pts) started the season slowly and have already dropped three games on the year. They picked up a nice win over Arsenal recently (2-0), but failed to turn that into a win streak, drawing Newcastle in their next match. The Blues have all the tools to make a charge, but they are eight points back of United and seven behind City in the standings. Even at this early stage of the season, catching them both looks like a daunting task.
Liverpool 50/1: There is little chance that Liverpool (3-2-2, 11 pts) wins the 2015-16 title, but they have shown the ability to play with the top teams in the league on any given day. The Reds already drew against Arsenal in an away game that they should have won, and gave Manchester United a scare at Old Trafford. But they also suffered an embarrassing 3-0 home loss to West Ham that illustrates why they won’t be there come season’s end.
Tottenham 100/1: Striker Harry Kane’s future with Tottenham (3-3-1, 12 pts) could hinge on how the team fares in the EPL standings. Kane is wanted by many teams in the Premier League, but Spurs are not willing to let him walk away; in order to keep him next summer, the team needs to show him they have both the structure and a good enough roster to fight for an EPL title.
- Everton 400/1
- West Ham 500/1
- Crystal Palace 1000/1
- Southampton 1000/1
- Swansea 1000/1
- Leicester 1500/1
- Stoke City 1500/1
- West Brom 1500/1
- Aston Villa 2000/1
- Newcastle 3000/1
- Bournemouth 4500/1
- Norwich 4500/1
- Sunderland 4500/1
- Watford 4500/1
(Photo credit: db photoshoot [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.)