If there was any doubt over who the Premier League favourites were before the genesis of the 2014/15 season, then Chelsea’s 6-3 win at Everton confirmed that royal rather than sky blue is the colour as Manchester City went down 1-0 at home to Stoke.
It may only by week three of the new campaign, but here’s five things we’ve already deciphered which could go some way to shaping your seasonal punting plan.
Chelsea are worthy 4/5 title favourites
If Jose Mourinho really believed that his side were the ‘little horses’ of the last title race then Chelsea now resemble something like a Trojan steed after a 6-3 victory at Goodison Park made it three straight wins.
Any doubts over new striker Diego Costa’s ability to make the transformation have been banished in a four-goal blaze, the defence is even sturdier with Thibaut Courtois in goal and Cesc Fabregas is the signing of the summer.
Liverpool are still top-four material – 1/2
Widespread bandwagon-led predictions of a sharp decline in Liverpool’s fortunes post Luis Suarez, acquired yet more followers after that 3-1 defeat to City.
However, a rampant display over one of their main rivals for a top-four spot at White Hart Lane blew that negativity out of the water as Raheem Sterling and co overran the Lilywhites.
Sylvain Distin needs replacing at Everton
Transfer deadline day links with a move for Stoke centre-back Ryan Shawcross should be welcomed with open arms by the Goodison Park faithful.
Although their stalwart French defender has performed admirably over many seasons, his 36-year-old legs were run ragged by Costa and co and he looks in need of a well-earned break.
Aston Villa can avoid a third successive dogfight
Roy Keane’s appointment as Paul Lambert’s assistant and a move to bring experienced faces back into the Villa first team has worked wonders in the early throes, with seven points out of nine bagged already.
If Tom Cleverley can be persuaded to make the jump to Villa Park too, then a top-half finish rather than a third campaign scrapping at the bottom looks on the cards.
It will take a miracle for Manchester United to win the title – 16/1
Despite their well-documented troubles in finding defensive reinforcements, a team containing Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Angel Di Maria and Juan Mata ought to find a way past Burnley.
Radamel Falcao’s rumoured arrival will still not be enough to tip the balance either.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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