For Leicester City, Queens Park Rangers and Burnley, the start of the Premier League season is the moment that last year’s slog in the Championship becomes worthwhile.
They say a good start is imperative for newly-promoted sides and news.bwin.com/en/ have looked at their fixtures against Everton, Hull and Chelsea respectively and picked out the best bets.
Everton to beat Leicester @ 7/5
The Foxes enter the Premier League on the back of becoming just the fourth team to win promotion with more than 100 points, but the visit of Everton could prove too much of a step up in class.
Nigel Pearson’s men look set for a comfortable season but the Merseysiders are a fine side. Roberto Martinez’s transfer business has ensured for the first time in years the Toffees go into a season settled and the permanent club record signing of Romelu Lukaku shows their intent as they take aim at a top four finish.
The Blues were undefeated in ten trips to teams in the bottom half last season, winning six, and they can make their extra quality tell against a defence short on top flight experience.
QPR to beat Hull @ 6/4
Harry Redknapp’s side scraped into the Premier League via the most fortuitous of play-off victories against Derby despite their strong favouritism and huge wage bill, but now they are here they can make a decent account of themselves, starting with victory over Hull at Loftus Road.
Only champions Leicester won more home points than Redknapp’s men last term, who lost just twice in 23 fixtures, and they will be relishing the visit of travel sick Hull.
Relegated Norwich and Cardiff were the only teams who accrued fewer points on the road than the Tigers’ measly total of 12 last season, with the Canaries the only side to lose more away trips than Hull’s 13.
Diego Costa to score first in Burnley v Chelsea @ 11/4
You might have heard Jose Mourinho mention in passing during the course of last season that he didn’t much fancy his striking options, but the Portuguese boss has no such excuse this time around and Diego Costa can prove exactly why by opening the scoring when Chelsea go to Burnley.
The Brazilian-born marksman was sensational for Atletico Madrid last term, netting 27 goals as Los Colchoneros claimed the La Liga title and a further eight as Diego Simeone’s men finished runners-up in the Champions League.
The £32m man has scored four goals in pre-season, including two in the first seven minutes of Chelsea’s final preparation match against Real Sociedad, and possesses the type of quality that Burnley’s defenders are simply not used to facing.