The number of sub plots written into the soap opera of the 2014/15 Premier League season makes this edition a truly fascinating prospect, something that is reflected in the Premier League odds.
Jose Mourinho’s trophyless first season back at Chelsea prompted an ambitious summer transfer campaign in which the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Champions League finalist Diego Costa were signed, which led to the Blues emerging as favourites in the Premier League markets.
Meanwhile, Manchester United welcome the decorated Louis van Gaal into their dugout following his impressive achievement in guiding an unfancied Netherlands squad to the World Cup semi-finals.
There is doubt over the prospects of champions Manchester City retaining following a fairly passive summer transfer campaign.
Though Willy Caballero, Eliaquim Mangala, Bacary Sagna, Fernando and Frank Lampard all arrived, the focus was in improving squad depth rather than seriously strengthening the starting line-up, and that causes them to trail Chelsea in the title-race odds.
Likewise, the expectation of the Premier League betting odds is that Liverpool will struggle to build on last season’s unexpected second-place finish, especially without Luis Suarez, who was sold to Barcelona. Top-four regulars Arsenal are also outsiders despite signing Alexis Sanchez.
At the other end of the scale, the three promoted clubs – Leicester, Burnley and QPR – are among the frontrunners in the relegation market. A combination of shrewd management, retention of the team spirit that guided them out of the Championship and some shrewd January buys will be necessary to survive.
Matchdays see the variety of Premier League odds grow rapidly in size with correct scores markets, first goalscorer and half time/full time betting, amongst others all becoming available.
It’s not just matchdays and outright markets that catch the eye where Premier League odds are concerned. The pressure on managers in the Premier League increases with each season and there’s never a shortage of names in the race to be the first to face the chop.