Bill Edgar: Odds highlight strength of big six in Premier League

Pierre Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang's Arsenal are sixth favourites for the Premier League but at 25/1 they show just how strong the English top flight is
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The Times football journalist and stats expert Bill Edgar joins us for the 2018-19 season looking at all the stories behind the stats...

"The emergence of Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur over the past decade - joining Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool to comprise a "big six" - gives the Premier League an impressive clutch of heavyweight clubs."

Premier League the most competitive of Europe's top flights

The Premier League can boast the most competitive top six among Europe's big five leagues. Ten years ago Everton sat sixth in the pre-season title betting at a mammoth 200/1 but now Arsenal occupy the same position at odds of just 25-1. That latter figure is lower than for the equivalent team in the top flights this season in Italy, Germany, Spain and France. The emergence of Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur over the past decade - joining Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool to comprise a "big six" - gives the Premier League an impressive clutch of heavyweight clubs.

Bill Edgar test
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North-west and London dominate Champions League places

In the past 15 seasons, 59 of the 60 top-four places in the Premier League have gone to North West or London teams - the exceptions were Leicester City's title-winners of 2015-16. Leicester and Wolverhampton Wanderers top the betting among clubs outside those two regions to finish in the top four this season at odds as high as 40-1.

Betfair Premier League top four
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Betfair Premier League top four odds 2017-18
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Trigger-happy clubs set sack race record

Last season saw the biggest turnover of English top-division managers in history as clubs became ever more impatient for success or progress, so we may not need to wait long for the first departure of the new Premier League campaign.

Betfair Sack Race Stats
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Number of Premier League Managers To Be Sacked in 2018-19
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Bill Edgar is a football writer for The Times

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