Our weekly review of the latest betting news with five things for you to consider, including England’s 6 Nations odds following their exit from the Rugby World Cup.
1. Beaten England offer little value for 6 Nations
After becoming the first host nation ever to get knocked out in the pool stages of a World Cup, England and Stuart Lancaster face an uncertain future. However, their early exit on the back of Twickenham defeats to Wales and Australia has thus far had no impact on their price for next year’s RBS 6 Nations tournament, for which England remain the 15/8 (Ladbrokes, William Hill) favourites. There’s scant evidence to suggest that the team which has finished as runners-up in each of the last four years since their last victory in 2011 should be the market leaders, especially as they play only two of their five fixtures at home. Ireland, the back-to-back winners who play three times in Dublin, once more look a better prospect at odds of 11/4 with BetVictor and it’s notable that the Irish bookies Paddy Power have them as 21/10 favourites, with only Coral going shorter at 2/1.
2. Back Wigan to end Leeds’ treble dream
After edging St Helens 20-13 in their Super League semi final, Leeds have the opportunity to claim a domestic treble if they can beat Wigan in Saturday’s Grand Final to add to the Challenge Cup and League Leader’s Shield they already have in the trophy cabinet. It’s been a remarkable season for the Rhinos, who outscored all of their rivals by a distance during the regular season, yet they are considered the outsiders for the Old Trafford showdown at 11/10 with most bookmakers in the match betting, and that reflects the fact that Wigan have had the edge over them in their three meetings this season. Wigan, who matched Leeds’ record of 20 wins from 30 league games, won two of those three meetings including a 27-12 success at Headingley back in May. If anyone is equipped to take down this potent Leeds side it is the Warriors, who conceded the lowest points tally in 2015 and it’s interesting that Stan James buck the trend and make Wigan 21/20 outsiders (8/11 elsewhere).
3. Gunners cut after United rout
Arsenal are the big movers in the Premier League title betting after their crushing win over Manchester United on Sunday afternoon. The Gunners were transformed from the sluggish outfit which lost so carelessly to Olympiakos in the Champions League in the week as they blitzed a leaden-footed United from the first whistle and having opened the day as 4/1 chances for the title they are now no bigger than the 11/4 on offer from Bet365. United have been pushed out to 8/1 by Coral despite sitting just two points off the top, with leaders Manchester City the 8/11 favourites (general) after their 6-1 demolition of Newcastle – a bizarre game in which they could easily have fallen 3-0 behind before waking up. After picking up just eight points from their first eight games, Chelsea are out to an astonishing 25/1 with Paddy Power. They are 10 points back, but before writing them off it’s worth noting that City were 8 and 9 points behind the leaders in the spring in the two seasons they won the Premier League title. Under fire Jose Mourinho still has 30 games to turn things around.
4. Ancelotti the best option for Reds
Liverpool have made a stronger start to the season than the defending champions, but that has not been sufficient to save Brendan Rodgers from the sack. Jurgen Klopp has immediately been installed as the bookmakers favourite to replace the Northern Irishman and the situation is fluid, with odds changing all the time. Klopp had an outstanding record at Borussia Dortmund – at least until his final season – but a better candidate is surely Carlo Ancelotti, three times a Champions League winner as a manager (a feat only matched by Bob Paisley) and also proven in the Premier League, having guided Chelsea to a league and cup double, scoring 103 league goals in the process.
5. Cherries at risk after Wilson blow
At the foot of the table things look bleak for Aston Villa, Sunderland and Newcastle, who have managed just one win between them over the first 8 games – Villa’s 1-0 success at Bournemouth on the opening day. Next in the firing line despite currently in 15th place are Bournemouth, who look more vulnerable after it was confirmed that Callum Wilson would miss much of the rest of the season with a ligament injury. The striker, who has scored half of the Cherries’ 10 Premier League goals, is so important to the way they play not just because of his finishing but also thanks to his tremendous pace and he will be extremely difficult to replace. Next up is a trip to the Etihad to face Manchester City, after which the current best relegation price of 14/5 with Ladbrokes may look rather generous, especially if one of the bottom three can get their act together.