The Premier League returns today after a short summer break and PA online sports betting is ready for it.
For years, the Premier League billed itself as the “greatest league in the world” only to hear chuckling and derision from serious world football followers who noted that the English teams regularly came up short when it mattered against the powerful European clubs (Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, etc.).
Well, those days are over. Liverpool beat Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League final last season – and neither of those clubs could beat Manchester City for the Premier League title. It is now very hard to argue that any league is better than the Premier League, at least in terms of the clubs at the top.
With a new season comes new opportunities to look for value on the weekly Premier League slate. Here are three such wagers presented for your consideration this week from PA sportsbooks. Odds are from FanDuel Sportsbook PA. Before we get to the plays, be sure to take advantage of FanDuel Sportsbook’s $500 risk-free bet for new users.
Meanwhile, for those of you in New Jersey, be sure to check out our newly updated NJ online sports betting page that’s loaded with great promos, bonuses, and free bet options.
WEST HAM UNITED v. MANCHESTER CITY
Both teams to score (yes) at -110
Manchester City is in the midst of a ridiculous run of form against West Ham. The Citizens have won eight straight matches against the Hammers in all competitions. In their two Premier League meetings last season, City won 1-0 at home and 4-0 away. But that bit of data runs counter to just about all of the other indicators.
West Ham scored at least once in each of their last five league matches last season. Additionally, West Ham played City in the Premier League Asia Trophy semi-final in July and lost 4-1. Prior to last season’s two-legged whitewash by City, the Hammers had scored at least once against City in five of their prior six league matches, including a draw and a win. So there isn’t much value in West Ham to win or to draw in this match, but you should be able to count on them to score. If they do, that ought to be enough – West Ham hasn’t shut City out since November 3, 2012.
Add to that the fact that the Hammers spent legitimate money in the summer transfer window – Sebastian Haller (from Eintracht Frankfurt for £45m) and Pablo Fornals (from Villarreal in a deal worth £24m) – and it looks like West Ham should at the least score once in their home opener.
Supporters of Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley will say he answered calls to spend more in the transfer window. Critics will point out that Ayoze Perez hasn’t been adequately replaced and squad depth is a real problem https://t.co/ppqCd4ImKB pic.twitter.com/w0syh3tQ0Z
— Forbes SportsMoney (@ForbesSports) August 9, 2019
NEWCASTLE UNITED v. ARSENAL
Arsenal to win at -125
These two storied clubs are going in separate directions; some might say they are simply reverting to what they generally have been. Arsenal spent significant money in the summer transfer window. They bought Nicolas Pepe from Lille for £72m. Pepe had 23 goals and 12 assists in 41 games in Ligue 1 last season. The Gunners also added David Luiz to handle central defense and brought in Kieran Tierney from Celtic to further bolster the backline.
Meanwhile at Newcastle, Rafa Benitez finally tired of trying to wring results from a threadbare squad and left the club. He wasn’t the only one. Ayoze Perez is now at Leicester City. Journeyman English manager Steve Bruce has been brought in to fill the void left by the departure of Benitez. Early indications are, well, not great. Per the BBC, Bruce brought in veteran, oft-injured striker Andy Carroll at the transfer deadline because, get this: “He [Carroll] was desperate – a bit like myself, I suppose – to come back.” Woof.
If this match was played in London, Arsenal would probably be a prohibitive favorite, perhaps in the -260 range. Being at home is normally an advantage, but the unrest in Newcastle these days makes for difficult conditions for a Magpies side that may be headed for relegation.
“Everytime I lead the club out it’s a really proud moment, we’re all going after the game, we’re excited!
‘They’re will be a lot of emotion around the first fixture’ 🔴
Chris Wilder on Bournemouth 👊🏻 pic.twitter.com/sGUTLijafM
— Sheffield United (@SheffieldUnited) August 8, 2019
BOURNEMOUTH v. SHEFFIELD UNITED
Over 2.5 goals at -112
They can’t all be beauty contests, and this match between newly-promoted Sheffield United — a 7/10 bet to be sent right back to the Championship at the end of this season — and Bournemouth, who finished 14th in the table last season, may not produce glorious football. But it certainly ought to produce goals.
Sheffield United scored at least once in each of their last 11 league matches last season. Yes, it was the Championship, but Bournemouth and its -14 goal difference last season doesn’t suggest that the Cherries are a defensive fortress. Fortunately for Bournemouth, they are potent against poorer competition. In their last five weeks of last season, Bournemouth played three sides who finished just above or just below them in the table, and the matches were packed with goals.
Bournemouth scored three goals at Crystal Palace and lost 5-3. They scored three goals at Southampton and drew 3-3. They scored five goals at Brighton & Hove Albion and won 5-0. Bournemouth might get three goals here on their own; if Sheffield notches even one, this match should comfortably feature three goals.
WHERE TO GET IN ON THE ACTION
Our PA sports betting page details all the sportsbooks you need to know, but we recommend FanDuel Sportsbook PA and SugarHouse Sportsbook. Both are available on iOS (SugarHouse is mobile web), offer a signup bonus, and feature a range of action for Premier League matchups.