Rarely does the kick for home come before the final lap’s bell in a foot race, but in the battle to finish first in the Premier League Liverpool have been making their lung-bursting sprint to the line for weeks.
A 2-1 victory over West Ham at Upton Park made it nine league wins on the spin for Brendan Rodgers’ side, took them two points clear at the top of the table and saw their odds to be crowned champions cut to 17/10.
With just five games to go in the 2013/14 campaign, Ladbrokes make it a 9/1 chance that the Reds take maximum points from their remaining fixtures and carry the title race to the wire.
Manchester City’s two games in hand on the Merseyside club mean they are still the market leaders to win their second Premier League title in three years, at 8/11, but they aren’t fancied to come out on top in the pivotal trip to Anfield next weekend.
The Reds are the favourites for that clash at odds of 13/10 and with Norwich, Chelsea, Crystal Palace and Newcastle remaining on Liverpool’s schedule, it seems a generous offering that they maintain their winning streak until the end of the term.
The City and Chelsea matches are rightly seen as the potential banana skins in the winning run, but with both games due to be played at Anfield – where Liverpool have won 12 of their last 13 – it certainly isn’t as barbed a bet as punters might think.
Alex Donohue of Ladbrokes said: “While the title race remains in Liverpool’s hands the betting suggests City will spoil the party. The market expects City to get at least a point at Anfield however a loss would concede title favouritism to their opponents.”
Anyone still feeling sceptical about the chances of a complete set of wins may be interested in the 13/8 about Liverpool remaining unbeaten in their final five fixtures.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £50 in free bets.