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Leaders West Brom Now +225 to Win EFL Championship; Leeds Still Favored at Even-Money

John Dillon

by John Dillon in Soccer

Nov 15, 2019 · 7:44 AM PST

Leeds vs Southampton
Leeds United players celebrate after Leeds United's Patrick Bamford scored his side's second goal during the English Premier League soccer match between Leeds United and Crystal Palace at Elland Road Stadium in Leeds, England, Monday, Feb. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Jon Super, Pool)
  • WBA lead table but are only favored second to finish on top
  • Bielsa’s team remain most highly-rated by analysts although in third place
  • Preston North End are the surprise contenders in second spot

West Bromwich Albion are the leaders of England’s EFL Championship but Leeds United remain the team considered most likely to win the title next spring.

After an unbeaten run of six matches, Albion have 33 points and are two points clear of both second-placed Preston North End and third-placed Leeds.

EFL Championship 2019-20 Odds

Team Odds
Leeds Utd +100
West Bromwich Albion +225
Fulham +800
Preston North End +1600
Brentford +2000
Nottingham Forest +2500
Swansea City +2500
Bristol City +3300
Sheffield Wednesday +5000
Cardiff City +10000

Odds taken at Nov. 15. 

Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds team have been defeated twice in the past eight games but have steadied their form over the last five matches to maintain their position as pre-season favorites to finish first.

They are priced at +100  to lift the title with WBA rated second favorites at +225.

Albion Beaten Just Once

Fulham – currently seventh and outside even the playoff positions – remain fancied as third favorites at +800. Preston, presently second, are rated at +1600.

WBA – beaten only once – offer better prospects than Leeds at their price. Fourth-placed Swansea City suggest a good outside opportunity because they are widely priced at +2500.

Leeds are one of the biggest and most historic clubs in England’s second-tier and narrowly missed promotion to the Premier League after a 15-year absence last season following a meltdown late in the campaign.

Despite the oddsmakers’ continued faith in them however, there remains a sense that they cannot quite establish the kind of consistency which would put them firmly in command of the table.

WBA are under the command of former West Ham United manager Slaven Bilic who took charge last summer following the Midlands outfit’s defeat in the semifinal of the promotion playoff.

Leeds were +400 favorites for the title in the preseason,followed by Fulham at +700 and WBA at +900 and Cardiff City at +1000. Preston were not even priced in the top 10.

WBA are under the command of former West Ham manager Slaven Bilic who took charge last summer following the Midlands outfit’s defeat in the semifinal of the promotion playoff.

They have suffered just one league defeat in 16 fixtures while winning nine times and drawing on five occasions.

After occupying first place since a 4-2 defeat of Cardiff City on October 5, they currently look more consistent and better value at their price than Leeds.

In their last two matches, they have impressively won away from home twice – by 2-0 at Stoke City and then 1-0 at Hull City.

However, WBA’s only defeat came at the hands of Leeds by 1-0 on October 1.

Slipped to Fifth Place

Leeds slipped as low as fifth after losing at Millwall on October 5.

They last led the table on September 21 after a 1-1 draw at home against Derby County.

However, after successive home wins in their most recent two fixtures they have re-established their challenge – level on 31 points with second-placed Preston but behind them on goal difference.

They beat Queens Park Rangers 2-0 and then won 2-1 against Blackburn Rovers.

Preston are the surprise package of the promotion zone after finishing 14th last season.

Preston were founding members of the Football League but last played in the top flight – the former First Division – in 1960-61

The historic Lancashire club have held on to second place for the last three rounds of fixtures in which they have won three times.

After a home 3-2 win against Blackburn Rovers, they scored a notable 1-0 away win at Charlton Athletic and followed up with a 3-1 home defeat of Huddersfield Town.

Preston were founding members of the Football League but last played in the top flight – the former First Division – in 1960-61.

Brentford Surprise Fancy

Brentford are surprisingly priced as fourth favorites for the title at +2000 even though they are ninth in the table – nine points behind the leaders WBA.

Swansea City are in fourth place with 29 points. They are currently priced at +2500 for the title.

They are ahead of fifth-placed Nottingham Forest who are priced at +2500 and also ahead of sixth-placed Bristol City, who are rated at +3300.

Pick: West Bromwich Albion +225

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