The SPL is about to get underway, with Celtic and Rangers ready to slug it out for the title once more. Here, news.bwin.com/en/ assesses the chances of the Hoops ending Rangers’ recent dominance and finishing first for the first time in four years.
Football betting fans looking to gain greater insight into this season’s SPL should look no further than news.bwin.com/en/. The site will be previewing all of the biggest games in the league over the next year, while the news.bwin.com/en/ Stats Centre will also prove a useful tool in helping punters make the most informed football betting decisions.
Manager: Neil Lennon
SPL title odds: 4/5
First match: Hibernian (a) – 2/5 to win
Last season: 2nd
Players in: Kelvin Wilson (Nottm Forest, free); Adam Matthews (Cardiff, free); Victor Wanyama (Germinal, £1 million)
Players out: Graham Carey (St Mirren, free); Sean Fitzharris (Morton, free)
Central Coast Mariners (a) Lost 1-0
Perth Glory (a) Won 2-0
Melbourne Victory (a) Won 1-0
Cardiff City (a) Won 1-0
Key man: Kris Commons
Having only signed for the Hoops at the end of January, Commons made an immediate impression at Celtic Park. The versatile playmaker, who is comfortable on either wing or in the hole, scored five minutes into his debut in the 4-1 win against Aberdeen in the Co-Operative Insurance Cup semi-final. He ended the season with 14 goals in 21 appearances, and should he be able to carry this form through the entire 2011-12 SPL campaign then Commons could prove the difference between Celtic finishing first or second.
Are they worth backing?
There has been an added air of determination about Celtic this summer as they seek to put an end to Rangers’ run of three titles in a row. Although they have been quiet in the transfer market, with midfield enforcer Victor Wanyama the only player acquired for a fee, the fact that the Bhoys ran their city rivals so close last time around suggests drastic changes are not needed for them to go one better this season. With pre-season preparations having gone well – just one defeat in four matches is indiciative of a team ready to hit the ground running – Celtic look set for a return to the summit. As such, a punt on Celtic to win their first title since 2008 looks the best option in bwin’s SPL football betting market.
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