The Premier League rarely fails to disappoint and the opening round of the new season certainly had some serious moments for many football fans, managers and pundits to get stuck into.
Betting companies in Kenya and elsewhere have already shifted their odds on key title contenders, as well as top four hopefuls alike.
No central striker leaves City chasing the pack
Abu Dhabi backed Manchester City and their Catalan manager Pep Guardiola are closing in on the £1 billion pound mark when it comes to their transfer spending. The Sky Blues fielded the most expensive starting eleven in Sunday’s opener away to Tottenham Hotspur at a cost of an eye-watering £550 million.
Despite their owner’s penchant for opening the chequebook, an out of sorts City side were outdone by a Spurs team many have already written off. They went on to lose the match to a single thrust forward by Korean marksman Son-Heung Min.
Much of the pre-match chat was focused toward alleged wantaway star striker and England captain Harry Kane, who failed to make an appearance in the starting line up, on the bench or even in the stands in Spurs home opener.
Kane has been heavily linked with Manchester City in his own personal quest for silverware, with Guardiola’s side looking for a stand out striker to add to the wealth of talent they possess on the flanks.
City’s title odds have drifted considerably since their opening match defeat with many online bookmakers pricing them at an increased 2.10. Although many still have them pegged as firm favourites. Given their experience in title races in recent years, their marquee addition of England international Jack Grealish and their wealth of talent throughout the ranks, it’s probably a fair reflection of where they stand just now.
Chelsea start is Crystal clear
One side not short of strikers are Chelsea. Their recent acquisition of Serie A main marksman Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan has been a shrewd piece of business for the Blues this summer and will add formidable firepower to a team already looking like serious title contenders.
Indeed Thomas Tuchel’s side picked up exactly where they left off at the end of last season, already adding an extra piece of silverware to the trophy cabinet after a mid-week defeat of Villareal.
Their three-nil rout of Crystal Palace on Patrick Viera’s inaugural match in charge of a Premier League side was comfortable to say the least. Chelsea, like their rivals on the blue side of Manchester possess serious talent going forward and a proven Premier League striker in Lukaku will only bolster their title hopes.
The bookies still have them as second-favourites but with considerably shortened odds. Chelsea have quite the fixture list ahead of them in August and September with no less than Arsenal, Liverpool, Spurs and Manchester City coming up thick and fast.
If they can come out the other side fairly unscathed expect their title odds to shorten even further.
Old rivals welcome new arrivals
Manchester United and Liverpool might be the most successful clubs in the history of the English game but they’re not being regarded as stand out favourites to lift this season’s Premier League title.
Both Solskjær and Klopp will welcome new recent additions to the mix. United have gone all out in the transfer market to capture the signature of supposed generational talent Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund. The capture of the 21-year-old brings the end to a long drawn out two-year transfer saga and a serious question mark over United’s ability to attack the right-hand side.
The other entry through the door of Old Trafford is World Cup and Champions League winner, Raphael Varane who is fresh in Real Madrid. Both signings will no doubt significantly bolster a United side that have been on the rise under the Norwegian manager’s watch.
Take a trip down the M62 and you’ll find less new faces at Liverpool, but rather some welcome returns from an injury-riddled campaign that derailed any Scouse hopes of silverware last time round.
Liverpool’s signing of note is Frenchman Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig, but it’s his soon to be central back partner Virgin Van Dijlk who has Liverpool fans rejoicing most after a long-awaited return.
Resounding opening day victories and a flurry of impressive goals have seen odds on both sides shorten somewhat, but future performances will have to be equally as impressive to see either side edge forward in the pecking order.