EPL Back in Full Swing
Last weekend reminded us of what we’ve been missing for the last two and a half months. Premier League Matchday 1 had a two-goal comeback, an Erling Haaland debut brace, and more Manchester United struggles. Title challengers Liverpool even dropped points at newly promoted Fulham. There are some intriguing storylines and matchups ahead of this weekend as well. So, we’ll take a look at the EPL Matchday 2 highlights and run through the relevant odds.
Title Favorites and Heavy Matchday 2 Favorites
Just one week into the season, the Premier League futures odds have shifted dramatically. That’s due to Liverpool’s opening 2-2 draw at Fulham and Man City’s 2-0 win at West Ham. After dropping points, Liverpool moved from +200 to +300 to win the title. A sound EPL betting strategy may suggest that now is a good time to get better value on them.
Liverpool comes up against Crystal Palace this weekend at Anfield, where the Reds didn’t lose an EPL match all last season. Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool is -500 favorites vs. the Eagles, who lost 2-0 to Arsenal on opening day. This Monday matchup features a wide two-goal spread and the O/U stands at three. Note that Liverpool scored three goals vs. Crystal Palace in both meetings last season.
Erling Haaland had a dream Premier League debut for Manchester City, scoring both of their goals in a 2-0 win over West Ham. The City has already moved from -175 to -200 to win the title and Haaland stands as a strong golden boot candidate. Bettors might not find much value on Man City’s -1200 Moneyline vs. Bournemouth on Saturday, though.
New boys Bournemouth surprised with a 2-0 win vs. Aston Villa on opening day but are +3500 underdogs. Currently, two-time defending champions Man City stand at -135 odds to cover the 2½-goal spread.
Sunday’s London Derby
Sunday’s Chelsea vs. Tottenham matchup at Stamford Bridge is certainly one of the EPL Matchday 2 highlights. Chelsea has been a nightmare for Tottenham over the last few seasons and Spurs have struggled to score in the matchup. However, Tottenham put four on Southampton in their 4-1 Matchday 1 win. With Chelsea’s back line significantly changed from seasons past, Tottenham will hope to break their scoreless streak. The Blues have shut out Spurs in six consecutive meetings in all competitions.
Plus, Chelsea has won the last five meetings outright. Still, Chelsea has lower than a 50 percent implied chance of victory, at +125 odds. Tottenham, with their strongest team in recent memory, are +225 underdogs to break their 11-match winless streak vs. the Blues.
With Chelsea’s Timo Werner off to RB Leipzig, the Blues’ forward options are relatively thin. Raheem Sterling can slot across the forward line though and he made his debut in a 1-0 win vs. Everton. The O/U total stands at 2½ but two or fewer goals have been scored in six of the last seven head-to-head matches.
Arsenal Off to Dream Start
Arsenal fans couldn’t have asked for much more in their 2-0 opening day win vs Crystal Palace. Center back William Saliba finally made his debut and delivered a man-of-the-match performance. It also appears the additions of Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko will make a big difference this season. Arsenal played with a surprising urgency on opening day and now they’re -200 favorites to defeat Leicester City on Saturday.
The Gunners had few problems with Leicester last season and won both meetings, 2-0. In the Premier League era, Leicester City has beaten Arsenal on the road just once, in 2020. In their opening match, Leicester looked well on their way to three points but blew a two-goal lead to Brentford. Inconsistency plagued Leicester last season and the draw certainly wasn’t a good early sign.
The Foxes are +575 underdogs, while punters will find a draw at +360 odds. Arsenal is favored to cover the one-goal spread, at -120 odds.
Gerrard vs Lampard… On the Touchline
The Steven Gerrard vs Frank Lampard debate was a popular one during their respective playing careers. Now they’re being compared once again as managers of Aston Villa and Everton, respectively. Their teams will face off at Villa Park on Saturday.
Lampard’s Everton narrowly escaped relegation last term and the Chelsea legend is now on the hot seat. Everton lost their opener 1-0 to Chelsea and have struggled heavily with Villa in recent seasons. In fact, the Toffees are winless in their last six Premier League meetings with Aston Villa. Everton head to Birmingham as +350 underdogs, while a draw is priced at +270.
Villa won both matches last season by a combined 4-0 scoreline and are -120 favorites. It’d be a much-needed win for an Aston Villa team embarrassed by newly promoted Bournemouth on opening day. Plus, Everton is facing a players injury crisis with defenders Yerry Mina and Ben Godfrey, as well as striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin out.
European Hopefuls Face Off
One of the best EPL betting tips from last season was taking Newcastle United and Brighton ATS. Now, these European hopefuls will face off in one of the most intriguing matchups of the weekend. Hosts Brighton, is favored in this pick’em but Newcastle is an incredibly difficult team to defeat.
Both teams scored opening day wins. Brighton got their first ever win at Old Trafford while Newcastle defeated Nottingham Forest 2-0. Graham Potter’s Seagulls are +140 favorites but Newcastle isn’t far behind and sits at +210 odds. None of the three outcomes are out of the question as a draw is priced at +230.
Newcastle won the most recent meeting, 2-1, but these teams drew at the Amex Stadium last year. Newcastle and Brighton are two of the most popular dark horse top four picks this year. Eddie Howe’s Magpies have the best odds of any non-big six club, at +700. Meanwhile, Brighton shows +2000 odds to make the Champions League for the first time in club history.
Manchester United Can’t Catch a Break
Manchester United’s response to losing in Erik ten Hag’s first match should be one of the EPL Matchday 2 highlights. With the circus surrounding Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United once again looks like an unstable club this season. Notably, United has less than an implied 50 percent chance to win at Brentford on Saturday, at +105.
A resilient Brentford came back from two goals down on the road at Leicester and is no pushover. The Bees defeated West Ham, Arsenal, and Chelsea last season and took points from Tottenham and Liverpool. They’re +275 underdogs but just completed the signing of Denmark Euro 2020 star Mikkel Damsgaard from Sampdoria.
Bettors seem to be expecting goals in this one, with over 2½ at -130 odds. Manchester United put three goals on Brentford in both of their meetings last season and won both. It may be very early on, but anything other than a win here will raise more and more questions.Follow us on Twitter