This article is part of our Soccer Picks series.
Don't forget to check out our weekly soccer betting show Kits & Wagers, which covered Premier League Futures in the most recent episode.
The Premier League is back and I hope you're ready. Over the next three months, there's only one international break with a lot of midweek matches sprinkled in to go with the usual UEFA group stages. The deepest teams will be the ones who survive and those without UEFA matches (Newcastle, Aston Villa, Leicester City) could have a bigger advantage than some think.
Fortunately, I don't have to think about any of that the first few weeks. The season starts slow without any midweek matches in August, so it shouldn't be anything new.
My bets last season were incredibly average, as I finished 88-92-8, up $222 on $100 bets. I destroyed the first month of the season, at one point going up more than $2,000, but then whether through attrition or the Premier League just being too hard to bet on, things fell off. As a reminder, most of my articles are posted days before matches begin, so I unfortunately miss press conferences and obviously don't see starting XIs that are released. There were numerous times last season when teams completely switched formations or changed starting XIs, which turned me off my initial bets. But that's how it goes.
This season's goal? Finish in the positive again. Simple as that.
EPL Best Bets for Arsenal at Crystal Palace
Under 2.5 Goals -110
Heading into the season, I like both of these teams. Crystal Palace looked great in their first season under Patrick Vieira and more improvement seems inevitable. The slight worry is that a lot of their team wasn't together during the entire preseason because of COVID-19 restrictions, but that's really digging deep into a possibly meaningless note. Cheick Doucoure is now the enforcer in the midfield, while Eberechi Eze is closer to his best form after a full summer healthy.
Again, I like Arsenal and the pieces they added, but they struggled to score in situations like this all last season. Maybe Gabriel Jesus changes that, but I'll side with Palace, who took it to teams at Selhurst Park, highlighted by the 17 goals allowed in 19 home matches. I think both teams will struggle to get quality chances, as both enter the new campaign fairly healthy.
EPL Best Bets for Wolverhampton at Leeds United
Leeds United ML +130
The first thing that caught my eye was the Leeds United moneyline, which maybe doesn't make sense after last season. While I still think they'll have issues without the playmaking of Raphinha and leadership of Kalvin Phillips, they should be healthier than a season ago and added some intriguing pieces to help. The return of Patrick Bamford is also like a new signing after they struggled to replace him during his injury-riddled season.
As for Wolves, their big signing was Burnley center-back Nathan Collins, while Ruben Neves has been in constant rumors to move elsewhere. Getting Pedro Neto back to full strength is a boost with the re-signing of Joao Moutinho, but Romain Saiss is gone from the back line. Taking under 2.5 goals (-120) is always a reasonable play in Wolves matches, but I'm backing Jesse Marsch in his opener against a lackluster side that didn't make a ton of summer changes.
EPL Best Bets for Nottingham Forest at Newcastle and Southampton at Tottenham Hotspur
Parlay: Newcastle ML (-155) and Tottenham (-275) at +124 odds
If you've read my articles in the past, you know that I try to limit dumb parlays to the public. While I do a lot of dumb parlays myself, I don't let other people see them. However, for the first week of the season, there's an obvious moneyline parlay that stands out in the early Saturday slate.
The reason is that I think Newcastle are underrated a bit in the odds, but I didn't want to give them out at -155 to beat Nottingham Forest. Newcastle haven't done as much in the market as some thought, but they still have a solid squad that ended last season on a nice run. I think they should be closer to -200 to win this match, if not more, as I'm not entirely sold on Forest.
In addition to losing Djed Spence and James Garner, Ryan Yates won't be available for the opener. I know they've added pieces, but a lot of their guys haven't played together much and there's a decent chance their midfield gets bossed in this match by Bruno Guimaraes and company. It wasn't long ago that Newcastle dominated at home Arsenal and they should have their way in this spot.
As for Tottenham, this is a classic smash spot as long as they can start the season in form. Southampton did little in the transfer window despite ending last season in poor form, allowing multiple goals in their final six matches. They weirdly took four points from this matchup last season, but Tottenham seem to be in a great spot under Antonio Conte, as they have the depth across the pitch to compete in both Premier League and Champions League.
Combine Newcastle and Tottenham to win, and you get a decent return in two matchups I think could be controlled from the start.
EPL Best Bets for Brentford at Leicester City
Leicester City to beat Brentford +100
Leicester City is available at +100 at BetMGM, if you haven't signed up yet - you can use the BetMGM bonus code ROTOBONUS for a risk-free bet.
I was initially off Leicester after a quiet offseason, but some injuries to the Brentford back line have me looking at a couple bets for this matchup. However, since over 2.5 goals is -135, I'll focus on Leicester to win at home after winning both meetings last season.
As of writing, Jamie Vardy and James Maddison were healthy and Youri Tielemans was still on the team. That's kind of all I need for their home opener against a side that will be without two regular defenders in Ethan Pinnock and Kristoffer Ajer. The Foxes never really found consistency last season despite finishing eighth in the table with a multitude of injuries. Take away UEFA competition to go with a healthy Wesley Fofana and Jonny Evans, and I just talked myself into taking them +500 to finish highest without the Big 6 teams. Of note, Fofana has been in talks to move elsewhere, but even if he isn't there for this matchup Sunday, guys like Daniel Amartey and Caglar Soyuncu are still around.
EPL Schedule This Week
EPL Betting Picks This Week
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