Week eight of the 2019/20 Premier League could prove in time to have been a massively important one, as the results meant the top two in the title betting switched places.
On Saturday afternoon, Liverpool left it late to defeat Leicester City, but they got the job done as bookmakers expected them to.
However, there was a shock at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday as Wolves – who were available at 20/1 to win – beat Manchester City 2-0 to send shockwaves through the division.
At the start of their match, the champions were priced at 4/5 with BetHard to retain their crown, while Jürgen Klopp’s challengers were available at 15/13 with the same firm.
Two goals by Wolves’ Adama Traore put paid to that though. Other online bookmakers actually lengthened City’s title odds after the Spaniard opened the scoring in the 80th minute of the match, and once he scored again in the 94th minute and the match ended, prices switched across the board.
BetHard now have the Reds as the 9/13 favourites, with the Citizens available at 5/4. But we have been here before, and much later in the season, and Manchester City were still able to overhaul Liverpool.
On January 29th this year, City lost at Newcastle, which gave Liverpool a four-point lead and a game in hand. Bookmakers were giving the Reds around a 69% chance of winning the title, but the following night they drew with Leicester, and Pep Guardiola’s side won every remaining league fixture to pip Liverpool to the championship. So it’s certainly not over yet.
But it is easy to see why the Reds now lead the market. The last two seasons have shown Manchester City are very capable of getting around 100 points, yet it will be difficult for them to hit that mark in 2019/20.
If we assume a century of points is the requirement to take the title, Liverpool can get there with 24 wins, four draws and two defeats. If that sounds daunting, City require 27 wins and three draws, or 28 wins. It’s a phenomenal ask, no matter how strong they have been in the last few years.
The matches between the two are yet to be played, but there are only three more matchweeks until they clash at Anfield. The betting picture could easily shift after the international break as both clubs face tricky away fixtures; Liverpool travel to Old Trafford while City are at Crystal Palace.