Chelsea (+190) vs Manchester City (+162), Draw (+261)
Manchester City (5-1-0, 16 points) continue their London run this Saturday (September 30th), but unlike their recent matches against Watford and Crystal Palace, the upcoming fixture won’t be an easy three points, facing defending champions Chelsea (4-1-1, 13 points) at Stamford Bridge.
If they didn’t lose their season-opener against Burnley (3-2 at home), Chelsea would be tied on points with Man City. Instead, the upset left the Blues with an early deficit to both Manchester clubs, who are level at the top of the table.
The Blues have recovered nicely since the loss to Burnley, though. They defeated London rivals Tottenham (2-1), drew against Arsenal (0-0), and most recently crushed Stoke (4-0). They’re not looking quite as dominant as they did last season but their recent performances have been encouraging
Early struggles were somewhat expected. The champs lost some players during the offseason and officially said goodbye to striker Diego Costa last week. On paper, they’re worse off versus last year. But it’s still too early in the season to say whether the changes will workout on the field. The team may better off without Costa, for instance. Alvaro Morata has turned out to be a great replacement and has already scored six goals in the Premier League, level with Sergio Aguero and Romelu Lukaku in the race for the Golden Boot.
Manchester City won each of their last three games in spectacular fashion — 5-0 against Liverpool, 6-0 against Watford, and 5-0 against Crystal Palace. The new Man City, which features a strengthened attack and a revamped defense, seems unstoppable. Aguero and Gabriel Jesus have formed an amazing partnership upfront and the squad is finally playing as Pep Guardiola envisioned.
Whether City can hold their own against the top teams in the Champions League is still up for debate, but they are undoubtedly one of the strongest teams in the EPL right now, if not the outright class of the league. Their depth on paper and their stellar results so far have made them the early favorites to take home the title this season.
This is going to be an extremely tough week for Chelsea. They travel to face Atletico Madrid for a pivotal Champions League game on Wednesday (September 27th) and face the Premier League-favorites just three days later. Chelsea looks great at the moment, but Man City is on a whole other level.
The top sportsbooks have Man City as a narrow favorite. I’d recommend taking advantage of that line. Given their current form, I wouldn’t put any English team ahead of City right now.
Pick: Manchester City (+162)