Chelsea best by far of three teams that excel on opening day
There’s always money to be made on Premier League opening day, with new signings, fresh thinking and abject failure all contributing to big-priced scorelines and scorers as the most exciting division in world football kicks off.
All that being said, there’s usually a safe haven or three to invest wisely in. We particularly like the opening-day smarts of the trio below:
The Blues’ 2-2 draw at home to Swansea last term was something of an aberration, certainly under former boss Jose Mourinho, who had overseen opening-day victories over Manchester United, Wigan, Manchester City, Birmingham, Hull and Burnley during his two spells at Stamford Bridge.
Indeed, Chelsea’s 1-1 draw with Stoke under Andre Villas-Boas four years earlier was their only other opening-day disappointment this decade, and both Portuguese bosses were sacked later on in the seasons they failed to start with three points.
That leaves new Blues chief Antonio Conte under a lot of pressure to post an 8/13 debut triumph over West Ham this weekend.
Unlike Chelsea, City do have a couple of seasonal-debut defeats on record in the past 10 years, going down 3-0 to the Blues a decade ago and 4-2 against Aston Villa a couple of seasons later, but their form since is almost exemplary.
A 0-0 draw at Tottenham is the only blot on the two-time Premier League champions’ opening-day copybook since 2008/09, with new boss Pep Guardiola hoping to add to five wins on the spin at home to Sunderland.
Little wonder City are the shortest-priced side in the top-flight this weekend at 1/4 to win.
The vast majority of the Hornets’ early winning form has come in the Championship, but it can’t be knocked considering a win or draw away to Southampton would leave Watford without an opening-day loss in a decade.
In fact, the 2-2 draw at Everton last term checked a run of three Watford opening-day wins in a row, with their previous failure to triumph coming at Burnley in 2012/13, by the same scoreline.
You can have 14/1 on another 2-2 at St Mary’s, although backing Walter Mazzarri’s men to avoid defeat at 1/1 in Ladbrokes’ double-chance market seems more prudent.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.