It’s the opening weekend of the 2023/24 EPL season, and we break down the five best bets across all 10 games.
1. Burnley +2.0 vs Manchester City @ $1.90
The season opener pits promoted Burnley versus champions Manchester City. And I’m backing the home side to put up a fight.
The Clarets defeated all comers in the Championship last season, and were easily promoted with a whopping 101 points. But this is a different side to ones we’ve previously seen in the EPL under Sean Dyche. Under manager (and City legend) Vincent Kompany, there’s a new brand of football at Turf Moor. The Sky Blues start this campaign as $1.72 favourites to win the title for a fourth straight time, something that has never been done in the English top flight. But Pep Guardiola has already admitted his side aren’t quite yet up to speed, owing to the late start to pre-season after their 2022/23 treble.
🗣️ "If I had a choice I would play every week of every month of every year against a team of the level of Man City, that's the best way to improve"
Vincent Kompany discusses how Burnley are preparing for the Premier League 💪 pic.twitter.com/G3xuBHi0MN
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) August 2, 2023
2. Bukayo Saka (Arsenal) anytime goalscorer vs. Nottingham Forest @ $2.25
Local product Bukayo Saka is perhaps the fan favourite at The Emirates these days. And he looms as crucial in Arsenal’s title bid this season. Fifth-favourite to win the PFA Player of the Year gong this season with Palmerbet ($15), the England star could well just kick off his season in style in what should be a comfortable Gunners victory at home. He scored 11 goals in the 2021/22 EPL season, and 14 in the 2022/23 campaign. That upward trajectory is likely to continue in 2023/24.
"He's phenomenal and it's my job to help him be the best he can be. There's always situations where I stitch him up and he gets out of it cause he's so good, making me look so much better than I am."
Ben White loves playing with Bukayo Saka ⭐️ pic.twitter.com/QWd3kYS06Z
— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) August 4, 2023
3. Chelsea H2H vs. Liverpool @ $2.80
The first real blockbuster of the EPL season pits Chelsea at home to Liverpool in an intriguing clash. After a disastrous 2022/23 campaign, the Blues are seemingly refreshed under Mauricio Pochettino. And they’re still teeming with talent. It’s not a stretch to suggest huge January signings like Mykhaylo Mudryk — who failed to live up to the hype in a glass-half-empty season that was — may just thrive under the Argentine. Liverpool have lost a stack of experience in the off-season that can’t be replaced overnight. They’ve only made two signings of note, and there’s a sense of unease at Anfield. Chelsea a huge chance for an upset on the opening round of matches.
Pochettino ball is beautiful. pic.twitter.com/l4um3wgZjz
— ~ (@CFCdruw) August 1, 2023
4. Tottenham H2H vs. Brentford @ $2.45
Ange Postecoglou’s first game in charge marks a huge moment in Australian football. A local born and bred coach managing in the world’s biggest league was a mere pipe dream only two years ago. He’s already put his imprint on the side, shown in pre-season games, which have featured a high-press and passing out from the back at all costs. A huge week off the field surrounding Harry Kane’s future makes this a tough one to pick, but if anyone can sharpen Spurs players’ minds before kick off, it’s big Ange.
A washed out friendly, an owner charged with insider trading and the best player is almost gone 😱
Ange Postecoglou's first pre-season as Tottenham boss has had its fair share of chaos 😬
— Fox Football (@FOXFOOTBALL) August 10, 2023
5. Manchester United -1.0 vs. Wolverhampton @ $1.90
United get a tick for their off-season dealings, bringing in a new keeper (Andre Onana), number nine (Rasmus Hojlund) and creative midfielder (Mason Mount). However Wolves get a big fat cross. Not only have they failed to replace Ruben Neves and Raul Jimenez, but they’ve brought in a new manager less than a week out from their season opener. Julen Lopetegui’s departure spells trouble for Wolves, and Gary O’Neil has a stack of work to do. I’m backing United for a comfortable first-up win.
Mucking things up with Julen Lopetegui and then replacing him with Gary O'Neil is absolutely criminal from Wolves
— Football Ramble (@FootballRamble) August 8, 2023