Negativity abounds as ever but, while they haven't yet signed an established borderline world-class star like in the last three summers (Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez and Petr Cech), the Gunners added Granit Xhaka in midfield and haven't lost anybody important, so they have slightly strengthened the squad which achieved their first top-two finish in 11 years last term. Top-four odds of 1.738/11 should be seen as an affront by Arsene Wenger given the ease with which they achieved their 20th in a row.
Best Bet: Back Arsenal to finish in the top four @ 1.738/11
Having survived their first Premier League season by five points, the Cherries' year-two strategy has been rather brave, ditching proven commodities like Tommy Elphick and Matt Ritchie in favour of the potential of Jordan Ibe, Lewis Cook and Brad Smith, but Eddie Howe's record of making year-on-year gains earns him the benefit of the doubt. With no new strikers arriving, Callum Wilson has to be fancied to top score. He missed out by one goal last season despite injury limiting him to nine starts.
Best Bet: Back Callum Wilson to be their top scorer @ 8/11
Jon Flanagan is a great loan recruit, yet the Clarets lost two guys who started at least half of their 2015/16 games (Mike Duff and Joey Barton) and the only other senior signings have been Nick Pope and Johann Berg Gudmundsson, who were relegated to League One with Charlton. Yes, they have a 20-plus-goal Championship striker in Andre Gray, but they had two in 2014/15 (Danny Ings and Sam Vokes) and still fell five points short of survival, so odds above evens on the drop seem generous.
Best Bet: Back Burnley to be relegated @ 2.166/5
Parallels between this and Antonio Conte's Juventus initiation, when he inherited a bruised side that finished seventh and had no European football and led them to the scudetto unbeaten are striking, and Chelsea have shown their title-winning pedigree far more recently than the Old Lady. Mix in the retention of every protagonist in 2014/15's title triumph and the purchase of N'Golo Kante and they are this writer's title fancy. You don't have to be so bold though as it is 2.01/1 just for them to make the podium for the 12th time in 14 years.
Best Bet: Back Chelsea to finish in the top three @ 2.01/1
Steve Mandanda, James Tomkins and Andros Townsend are shrewd captures, but the failure to land a striker is a huge problem given that they scored just 16 goals in their disastrous final 21 matches last season. Nobody scored more than five league goals for the Eagles and, if anything, the situation has worsened with Dwight Gayle, Emmanuel Adebayor and Marouane Chamakh gone. The previous two FA Cup runners-up when down a year later: Hull and Aston Villa. A hat-trick can't be ruled out.
Best Bet: Back Crystal Palace to be relegated @ 7.413/2
It was odd to hire a director of football, Steve Walsh, revered for his lower-league and overseas nous and then buy exclusively from the Premier League 2015/16 catalogue (Maarten Stekelenburg, Ashley Williams and Idrissa Gueye), but there is enough quality already there to believe a coach of Ronald Koeman's talent can improve on 11th place regardless of who arrives. Evens on 54 or more points seems a gift - Everton did this eight times in a row before the double dip under Roberto Martinez.
Best Bet: Back Everton to earn over 53.5 points @ EVENS
The play-off winners no longer have the manager (Steve Bruce) or goalscorer (Mohamed Diame) responsible and haven't replaced either, with it being reported that there are no transfer funds available owing to owner Assam Allam's illness and a takeover being on hold. Chuck in the prospect of a rookie boss overseeing the campaign (Mike Phelan) and the volume of injuries across the thin squad and the Tigers look destined to be the fourth Wembley victors in 11 years to finish bottom.
Best Bet: Back Hull to finish rock bottom @ 2.9215/8
Besides Kante's exit, it has been a positive window, with a replacement of similar profile acquired in Nice's Nampalys Mendy, as well as Ron-Robert Zieler, Bartosz Kapustka, Ahmed Musa and others. So it is arguable that their squad is superior to the one that won the title, though whether it translates to another successful season is difficult to gauge given how unprecedented their 2015/16 was. One thing easier to judge by digits is the potential for a Jamie Vardy cool-off. The England forward went from 34 league goals in 2011/12 to four in 2012/13 then 16 in 2013/14 to five in 2014/15, so a drop off from last year's 24 is entirely possible, allowing Musa to grab top scorer honours.
Best Bet: Back Ahmed Musa to be their top scorer @ 100/30
The Reds have shopped well defensively, with Loris Karius, Joel Matip and Ragnar Klavan not only accomplished but cheap too. However, their attacking additions were expensive and their reliability is unclear, with Georginio Wijnaldum's impact fading at Newcastle when they needed him most after Christmas and Sadio Mane only excelling in short bursts at Southampton. Quite how Liverpool are rated equals and in some markets superior to Tottenham, who have outshone them in six of the past seven campaigns and ranked five places higher last season is a mystery.
Best Bet: Back Liverpool to finish below Tottenham @ 10/11
Change is good, but have Man City tweaked too much at once? Even if Pep Guardiola adapts to the Premier League as well as he did the Bundesliga, he needs Ilkay Gundogan and Leroy Sane to do likewise, as well as Nolito from La Liga. It is understandable why their title odds have drifted, but over 75.5 points should be a given. Guardiola has never delivered less in seven seasons as a top-tier boss, even in a league with four games fewer, and the Citizens have passed it four times in five years.
Best Bet: Back Man City to earn over 75.5 points @ 8/11
If it was easy to spot the mistakes made in Man United's first three summers post-Sir Alex Ferguson - dud appointments, slow recruitment, strategy-light spending - but it isn't so easy this year. They hired a manager in Jose Mourinho whose five completed Premier League campaigns yielded three firsts, a second and a third and bought one key man in each area: Eric Bailly at the back, Paul Pogba in midfield, Henrikh Mkhitaryan behind the striker and Zlatan Ibrahimovic up front. Only goal difference denied them the top northwest club status in May, so there isn't even a gap to close.
Best Bet: Back Man United to be top northwest club @ 8/5
While Burnley have barely strengthened and Hull have weakened, Middlesbrough have worked tirelessly to ensure that they are as prepared as possible for their Premier League return after seven years away. The Teessiders have reinforced almost every area and there have been some pretty eye-catching names among the incomings, including Victor Valdes, Viktor Fischer and Alvaro Negredo. Some lucky punters backed them at 2.56/4 to be top promoted club, but they still offer value at 1.910/11.
Best Bet: Back Middlesbrough to be top promoted club @ 1.910/11
It didn't matter if it was Nigel Adkins, Mauricio Pochettino or Ronald Koeman, the Saints improved their league position in each of the past six seasons despite plenty of transition. There is no reason why progress should stop under Claude Puel, who showed his Southampton suitability by steering Nice to two top-four Ligue 1 finishes in four years. Mane and Victor Wanyama have left, but the latest influx - spearheaded by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Nathan Redmond - is as promising as ever.
Best Bet: Back Southampton to finish in the top six @ 6.86/1
Mark Hughes took over a Stoke side in 2013 who, for all of Tony Pulis' stellar work, had never obtained a top-half Premier League finish and led them to ninth three years in a row. Indeed, all eight of his full top-flight terms as a boss have ended with his team tenth or higher. So how can the Welshman be such a big price to do what he always does, especially after a pre-season in which he didn't lose anyone of significance and brought in Joe Allen and Egyptian prodigy Ramadan Sobhi?
Best Bet: Back Stoke to finish in the top half @ 2.89/5
Though Sunderland were gutted to lose Sam Allardyce, Premier League history suggests that David Moyes is an upgrade, achieving eight straight top-eight finishes in the division and not placing lower than 11th since 2003/04. For a club whose average position over the past four years was 16th, it's an exciting proposition. They gathered 38 or 39 points in all of those seasons, so it would take just one more win under Moyes to clear 40.5 points, which seems a reasonable expectation at a tasty price.
Best Bet: Back Sunderland to earn over 40.5 points @ 19/20
This has been Swansea's most turbulent summer as a Premier League club, losing captain Ashley Williams, top scorer Andre Ayew and most of their attacking backup, with Mike van der Hoorn and Fernando Llorente the only first-team-ready newbies. The hope is that the players respond as well to squad restructure as managerial upheaval. And at least they still have Gylfi Sigurdsson, who came within two strikes of the top of their scoring charts in his first two years back at the Liberty Stadium.
Best Bet: Back Gylfi Sigurdsson to be their top scorer @ 6/5
Spurs haven't lost anyone they didn't want to lose and signed Wanyama and Eredivisie top scorer Vincent Janssen, so in theory they are in a superb position from which to launch another Premier League title challenge, but their 2010/11 and 2012/13 failures to seal successive top-four finishes and crushing conclusion to 2015/16 provide question marks. One certainty is that 3.412/5 is massive on Harry Kane being the league's top English scorer having done so in both of his seasons as a regular.
Best Bet: Back Harry Kane to be top English scorer @ 3.412/5
There hasn't been much pre-season hype for Watford, which is surprising as they have hired a coach who has placed in the top five of Serie A four times this decade in Walter Mazzarri, retained the guys who led them to 13th last term and added the likes of Issac Success. Neutrals and even captain Troy Deeney were disappointed by Quique Sanchez Flores' dismissal, but the owners have consistently been vindicated thus far with their ruthless dugout decisions. Deeney looks like an enticing bet to be their top goal-getter given that he outscored Odion Ighalo 7-1 from February onwards in 2015/16.
Best Bet: Back Troy Deeney to be their top scorer @ 11/10
An ownership change has been the big headline-maker at The Hawthorns, which is just as well as there hasn't been much transfer news to report. Matt Phillips has joined, but a failed Diafra Sakho medical means that they are still searching for a striker and Saido Berahino has yet to depart. So there is lots to do but, as long as Tony Pulis remains, relegation appears unlikely. Instead, back them as rank outsiders to claim the most points from head-to-head contests with regional outperformers Leicester and Stoke. They took seven points off the pair in 2015/16 and six the year before.
Best Bet: Back West Brom to be top midlands club (head-to-head) @ 5.04/1
The Irons took seventh place last season, but the expected improvement of Liverpool, Chelsea and Everton, the Europa League slog and the weight of history - they have spent consecutive campaigns in the top ten once this century - hint that a repeat is nowhere near as probable as the odds insist. Ayew and Sofiane Feghouli are solid signings, yet in an already vibrant area, whereas they weakened at right back and still haven't purchased the striker identified by David Sullivan as top priority.
Best Bet: Lay West Ham to finish in the top half @ 1.42/5
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