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Soccer Odds: Prop Bets on the Best Managers

Guardiola tries his luck in England
Tsutomu Takasu (flickr) [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/]

Last season had some interesting storylines when it came to our favorite managers. We saw rock stars like Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola falter, and veteran Arsene Wenger (further) ostracized by his own fan base. On the other hand, we saw Antonio Conte save a sinking ship and Zinedine Zidane soar to dizzying heights — again!

As teams take to buying and selling over the transfer window, their odds for the coming season are constantly shifting, and so are the prospects of the men who lead them.  and their prospects further down the line.


2017-18 MANAGERIAL ODDS

Arsene Wenger (Arsenal)

After enduring a season of abuse from his own fans, Arsene Wenger decided to stick to his guns and renew his contract at Arsenal.

If there’s one thing Wenger can point to, it’s his consistency. The long-time Gunners manager delivered a top-four finish for 20 consecutive seasons. That streak came to an end this year when the ailing club ended the season in fifth place.

The outlook is pretty bleak for Arsenal. Mesut Ozil is unhappy at the club and Alexis Sanchez is on the verge of leaving for PSG. Wenger did manage to snap up Alexandre Lacazette over the transfer window, but that alone won’t put an end to their 13-year title drought.

With the other top English clubs rapidly improving their lineups, Arsenal should be happy just to finish in the top four this season.

Odds Arsenal finish top-four in the 2017-18 EPL: 1/1

Odds Wenger is still manager of Arsenal in 2020: 1/2

Odds Wenger wins an EPL title before leaving Arsenal: 9/1


Antonio Conte (Chelsea)

Antonio Conte took a Chelsea squad in disarray and turned it into a title-winner. But now there’s some trouble in paradise. Star striker Diego Costa has had a huge falling out with the club and Conte has personally informed him that he is no longer wanted at Chelsea.

To replace him, Conte brought on Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata, but he isn’t quite on par with Costa. After a spat with the club owner, Conte has reportedly been granted a larger spending budget. We’ll have to wait and see what he can pull out of the transfer window.

Odds Chelsea win the 2017-18 EPL title: 7/2

Odds Conte is still manager of Chelsea in 2020: 3/1

Odds Chelsea win the Champions League by 2020: 15/1


Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid)

In just two seasons at Real Madrid, Zinedine Zidane has accomplished more than most managers could hope for in a lifetime. During his brief tenure as manager, he’s won two Champions League titles, one La Liga title, and a UEFA Super Cup.

There’s much more to come from Zidane and Real Madrid. He’s the perfect manager for the all-star team, tactically brilliant and respected by all.

Over/Under number of La Liga titles Real Madrid win under Zidane: 4.5

Over/Under number of Champions League titles Real Madrid win under Zidane: 2.5

Odds Zidane is still manager of Real Madrid in 2020: 1/1


Pep Guardiola (Manchester City)

Last season didn’t go according to plan for Pep Guardiola, yet Man City open as the EPL preseason favorites for 2017-18. While the Citizens struggled to adapt to Guardiola’s system early one, toward the end of the season they were looking pretty comfortable. Now that Guardiola has found something that works, the sky’s the limit.

Odds Man City win the 2017-18 EPL title: 19/10

Over/Under number of former Barcelona players Guardiola recruits to Man City: 4.5

Odds Man City wins the Champions League by 2020: 9/1


Jose Mourinho (Manchester United)

Considering the amount he’s spent over the last two seasons, Jose Mourinho better deliver some silverware. He broke the bank last year by acquiring Paul Pogba and has splashed €84.7 million on Everton’s Romelu Lukaku this season.

Man United are coming off a rocky season but salvaged a Champions League spot by winning the Europa League. It was a nervous path to get to where they are, but they have everything available to them this season. The question is, can Mourinho deliver?

Odds Man United win the 2017-18 EPL title: 3/1

Odds Man United win the Champions League by 2020: 12/1

Odd Mourinho is still manager of Man United in 2020: 6/1

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