Premier League on Betfair: Chelsea join City and Liverpool at the top as leaders fail to fire
Big wins for Arsenal and Chelsea set us up for a Super Sunday clash between title favourites Liverpool and Manchester City but the top-of-the-table showdown was a major letdown, says Joe Dyer
"The hotly anticipated clash between the league leaders and their closest pursuers was low-scoring, tetchy and tactical, lacking the explosive quality of last year's meetings."
Title favourites serve up a stinker
After giving us four of last season's most entertaining fixtures it was probably inevitable that Liverpool and Manchester City would eventually deliver a dud.
The hotly anticipated clash between the league leaders and their closest pursuers was low-scoring, tetchy and tactical, lacking the explosive quality of last year's meetings.
The drama came late on when Riyad Mahrez skied an 85th minute penalty over the crossbar to toss away a golden opportunity to win. The 0-0 final score was backed at [23.0].
Maybe the clue was in the goals against column of the Premier League table? Both teams came into the game having conceded just three league goals and both sides struggled to generate a clear opening. Indeed, it took more than an hour before either side got a shot on target.
The game became a little more stretched after that, referee Martin Atkinson awarding a penalty after a Virgil van Dijk tackle on Leroy Sane. But, in keeping with a game that failed to fire, Mahrez's effort lacked quality and sailed high over the bar.
The result leaves both clubs level with Chelsea on 20 points. City are the title favourites at [1.7], with Liverpool [3.55].
Chelsea cruise past Saints and into top spot for a short while
Eden Hazard's stunning start to the season continued at St Mary's where the Belgian opened the scoring and assisted the closer in a 3-0 win that took Chelsea top of the table until the final whistle at Anfield. the Blues sit second behind City on goal difference.
Manager Maurizio Sarri declared his team were not title challengers but the Betfair market suggests otherwise making the west London side single figure odds to win the league.
In Hazard they have that all-important weapon, a deadly goalscorer, and indeed the Premier League's leading marksman at that. A total of seven goals has him two clear of his nearest rivals and [7.6] for this year's Golden Boot.
Nine straight wins for firing Gunners
The day began at Craven Cottage where the Arsenal steamroller gathered more steam as the club climbed into the top four with a big defeat of Fulham.
Arsenal started the season with a pair of defeats but it's now nine wins in a row for Unai Emery's charges after chalking up their biggest win of campaign, a 5-1 crushing of the Cottagers. The final scoreline was backed at [100.0] in-play on the Betfair Exchange.
The game was locked at a goal apiece at halftime, but Arsenal streaked away from the Cottagers in the second 45 minutes as Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre Emerick Aubameyang both struck doubles with Aaron Ramsey adding the other.
What will make the win even sweeter for the Gunners is they push Spurs out of the top four thanks to a superior goal difference. Their north London rivals are the shorter price in the Betfair Exchange Top Four Finish market, however, the Lilywhites [1.68] compared to Arsenal's [2.68]. The Gunners are [50.0] to win the league.
Defeat leaves Fulham 17th, their eight Premier League games have served up a barely believable 30 goals so far. Fulham are [3.45] to suffer relegation.