City installed as favourites ahead of showdown with the champions

Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho go head-to-head on Sunday when Manchester City take on champions Chelsea
Manuel Pellegrini and Jose Mourinho go head-to-head on Sunday when Manchester City take on champions Chelsea

It has taken just one weekend for the Premier League title odds to shift significantly.

Manchester City’s comfortable triumph at West Brom meaning they now take over as favourites at 15/8 with Skybet at the expense of champions Chelsea (2/1,, who only managed a home draw against Swansea.

Those prices are likely to move again on Sunday given that the two teams face-off at the Etihad Stadium and again it’s City that are again considered jollies, this time at 7/5 via Paddy Power while Jose Mourinho’s troops are 2/1 (Ladbrokes) to strike an early blow in the race for top spot.

Inevitably, Stan James’s 12/5 about it finishing all-square will attract cash and indeed Mourinho would probably settle for a point so there’s also set to be money for bet365’s 7/2 marked against a score draw.

If there is to be a winner, the hosts would appear to be the most likely candidates in light of the pair’s respective results last time out but the Blues know how to grind out results and they’re more than capable of returning from Eastlands with a share of the spoils.

Subsequently, a case can be made for a 1-1 scoreline at 13/2 courtesy of BetVictor, especially as that was the result in both of last season’s meetings between the two, and it’s 10/13 ( for the two teams to find the net.

Aston Villa and Manchester United both registered 1-0 wins last weekend but it’s the latter that are expected to make it two victories from two as the duo face-off at Villa Park in the first Friday night showdown of the new campaign tomorrow.

Skybet offer 4/6 about Louis Van Gaal’s men claiming a maximum haul, they’re 13/5 courtesy of Ladbrokes to shade it by a one-goal margin and another 1-0 success for United can be backed at 6/1 with bet365.

William Hill, meanwhile, mark 4/1 against Wayne Rooney breaking the deadlock.

Arguably the biggest shock of last weekend came at the Emirates Stadium, where Arsenal were beaten 2-0 by West Ham and the Gunners might find it difficult to bounce back at Crystal Palace.

They’re 4/5 (Stan James) to emerge triumphant but the best bet at Selhurst Park is BetVictor’s 14/5 for an inconclusive affair.

A safer bet than Arsenal are Liverpool, who Stan James price at 8/15 to get the better of newly promoted Bournemouth at Anfield, another home banker are Southampton, even money at Skybet to take care of Everton and William Hill chalk Tottenham up at 3/4 to send Stoke home empty-handed. That trio combine at 17/4 (BetVictor) in an eye catching treble.

Elsewhere, Swansea have already been well backed at 10/11 via Stan James to build on their draw at Chelsea by overcoming Newcastle at the Liberty Stadium, William Hill go 11/8 about West Ham defeating Leicester and Ladbrokes quote Watford at 12/5 to share the spoils with West Brom at Vicarage Road.

A stalemate also stands out, this time at 23/10 (bet365), as Sunderland entertain Norwich.

A stunning performance at Trent Bridge saw England take an unassailable 3-1 lead over Australia in the series to regain the Ashes and Alastair Cook’s team are 7/5 favourites with Stan James to win the fifth and final contest at the Oval next week.

The Aussies are 13/8 at bet365 to restore some pride after their consecutive heavy defeats at Edgbaston as well as in Nottingham last week while a first draw of the series is available at 7/2 (Paddy Power).

Baggy Greens skipper Michael Clarke announced his retirement as his team relinquished the Urn and he’s 6/1 via Skybet to go out in style by being his team’s top batsman in his final match.

Perhaps, unsurprisingly, Joe Root heads Ladbrokes’s betting at 11/4 to be England’s most prolific scorer.

In-form Leeds underlined their title credentials last week by hammering Warrington 49-10 and the Rhinos are now just 13/8 with BetVictor to win the Grand Final at Old Trafford.

Brian McDermott’s men are an even skinnier 1/4 ( to come out on top after the Super 8s and can move closer to that goal by seeing off Wigan on Friday, a result bet365 price at 4/9.

BetVictor post even money against the hosts in the handicaps, where they start six points behind and Leeds winger Ryan Hall is 9/1 (Stan James) to cross for the first try at Headingley.

In the evening’s other two games, St Helens are 10/11 courtesy of William Hill when starting 14 points adrift of Hull FC at Langtree Park and Huddersfield are evens, this time via Stan James to cover visiting Catalans Dragons’ ten-point cushion.

Bet of the week: Joe Root to be top England batsman – 11/4 (Ladbrokes).

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