Sure as night following day, the Premier League’s top-half will contain the seven usual suspects come the final shakedown in May.
However, the question for punters looking for value in the top-10 market after just five games, is who will be joining Chelsea, Manchester City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United, Everton and Tottenham? (In no particular order).
At present, there are six teams currently above the fold which do not feature in the above list, but which of the half-dozen have the minerals to stay above the league table’s equator, if any?
Southampton 2nd – 4/9 for the top ten
Ronald Koeman’s shrewd signings and assured presence at the helm have ensured the Saints have dispelled any theories they would get relegated. Furthermore, they still have Jay Rodriquez to come back.
Aston Villa 3rd – 13/8
A win at Anfield was quickly followed by a thumping at home to Arsenal. Despite the vast improvements with Roy Keane in tow it’s that Villa-Park form which will hold them back.
Swansea 5th – evens
Garry Monk’s impressive squad have been bang on it from the first whistle of the season and the cohesiveness is there for all to see, as Everton found out to their peril in the Capital One Cup. Even at Chelsea where they ended up getting beat, they were the better team for the opening half hour, dominating the league leaders.
Leicester 7th – 13/8
‘That win’ will live long in the memory banks of Foxes everywhere and unlike Villa their home form makes Nigel Pearson’s freshmans an intriguing bet. However, it’s still a thinnish squad and if injuries hit then the tide could turn.
West Ham 8th – 2/1
The Irons have surprised with their revamped attacking style, though there is underlying contempt for manager Sam Allardyce still. Fitting Andy Carroll and Kevin Nolan back into the new-look team could prove tricky as well.
Hull 10th – 3/1
Steve Bruce has recruited very well and the Tigers may well go close. However, it could all hinge on whether the manager ends up jumping ship for Newcastle if Alan Pardew’s departure finally happens.
Verdict: Southampton and Swansea
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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