Matchweek 19 of the 2022-23 EPL season saw Manchester City claw back points on Arsenal, while things began to look decidedly grim at Chelsea.
Here’s how it looked for punters:
Title race heats up
It was there for the taking, and Pep Guardiola’s men did exactly that.
After Arsenal failed to take three points against Newcastle despite starting $1.77 favourites, Manchester City knew it was their time to strike. Not that the Gunners’ performance was poor, however. While they dropped points for the first time in six EPL games, there’s little to worry about according to Liverpool great and pundit Jamie Carragher.
Really good game for a 0-0!
Both teams showing great fight with no inch given. Arsenal shouldn’t worry about the dropped points, as Newcastle are the most organised team in the league!! #ARSNEW
— Jamie Carragher (@Carra23) January 3, 2023
The 0-0 result meant City had a chance to claw back two points when they travelled to Stamford Bridge on Friday morning (AEDT). And, starting $1.67 favourites, did the job as Jack Grealish linked up with Riyad Mahrez as the reigning EPL champions secured a 1-0 win. The result saw them widen a narrowing gap in the title market. Despite still sitting five points behind the Gunners, City have shortened again back into $1.50 with Palmerbet.
🗣 "They are going to do 100 or more than 100 points Arsenal, if they continue in that way – we won't catch them."
Pep Guardiola says Manchester City have to be "almost perfect" to catch Arsenal.
— TheAFCnewsroom (@TheAFCnewsroom) January 4, 2023
Chelsea on brink of bottom half
For the losers of that clash, things are looking decidedly grim. Graham Potter’s men have won just one of their last EIGHT EPL clashes, and now sit in 10th. And, going forward, an under-siege Potter will have to deal with even more injury concerns. With the likes of N’Golo Kante, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Edouard Mendy, Mason Mount, Ben Chilwell AND Reece James already on the sidelines, the clash against City saw both Raheem Sterling and Christian Pulisic added to the newest members of the Stamford Bridge treatment room. Already 10 points off Manchester United in fourth, Champions League football in 2023-24 is already looking a distant prospect. The Blues started the 2022-23 EPL season as $1.67 fancies to finish inside the Top 4 with Palmerbet. Now? Well, that’s looking less likely by the matchday. The Blues are out to $7.00 in that market.
"If this was Abramovich, he would be gone!"
Our panel discuss the possibility of the Chelsea hierarchy giving Graham Potter a season to develop the squad over the season. #beINPL #CHEMCI 🦁🔵 pic.twitter.com/JeSk60NrfR
— beIN SPORTS (@beINSPORTS_EN) January 5, 2023
Not for the first time this season, boos rung out at the King Power after another poor Leicester City performance. After starting as $2.36 favourites at home against Fulham, the Foxes were lacklustre again in going down 1-0. The third straight defeat not only piles the pressure on manager Brendan Rodgers, but sees the 2015-16 EPL champions move to within just two points of the drop zone. Prior to the season, it seemed highly unlikely Leicester could go anywhere near relegation. Rodgers’ side had finished in the top half of the EPL table in each of the five prior campaigns. And the pre-season markets reflected that. The Foxes started as $17 outside hopes of relegation. However things have now changed. Their proximity to the bottom three has seen that now come into $6.00. And Rodgers is certainly feeling the heat.
"We had clear opportunities to score and unfortunately didn’t take them." – Brendan Rodgers on #LEIFUL 🗣️
— Leicester City (@LCFC) January 4, 2023