QPR and Arsenal well placed in the divisional handicap stakes
QPR’s 2012/13 Premier League campaign is full of promise following a summer of heavy investment on top talents from at home and abroad with the likes of Julio Cesar, Esteban Granero and Jose Bosingwa, amongst others, arriving at Loftus Road.
The league title is a million miles beyond their current capabilities, yet their price of 25/1 to win the Premier League with a Ladbrokes divisional handicap of +37 points applied to their end of season tally could be a profitable prospect.
The R’s have started the season sluggishly, but that was to be expected following a complete overhaul of their squad. Mark Hughes’ transfer activity did not cease until the transfer window slammed shut and the constant comings and goings would obviously result in their new-look side needing time to acclimatise.
That was evident in their 5-0 drubbing at the hands of Swansea, but to take a point from two games at Norwich and Manchester City showed significant improvement.
The international break will have been welcomed by Hughes as it will have allowed his many new acquisitions to familiarise themselves with one another ahead of a hat-trick of upcoming London derbies.
As the season progresses it is anticipated that the Hoops will get stronger and stronger as they become accustomed to life under Hughes, a manager of undoubted ability.
On paper, their squad is stronger than many who would consider themselves top half of the table contenders and, once that has gelled, an additional 37 points could prove more than plenty in the divisional handicap stakes.
Another London club with good value in this market is Arsenal.
The Gunners have been given a 12 point cushion to boost their seasonal tally and their start to the campaign suggests that they have much improved on last year where they finished a massive 19 points behind the title winners.
A price of 18/1 says they’ll win the league this term with an additional 12 points and this could prove extremely profitable, especially if Olivier Giroud finds his feet in the top flight.
The French hitman has been struggling for form in his attempts to fill Robin van Persie’s formidable shoes but, with the creativity possessed by Arsenal, he is sure to keep getting chances. His success in the Premier League will boil down to perseverance.
There is still ample time for Arsenal’s defensive frailties to resurface, but goals would be the icing on an impressive looking cake for Arsene Wenger’s side and, should they find a source, it’s easy to envisage them being amongst the front runners without the bonus points at the end of the season.
All odds and markets correct as of the time of publication