Our weekly review of the latest betting news, including updated odds for BBC Sports Personality of the Year, plus the new England football manager vacancy.
1. Murray looks a shoo-in for third SPOTY
After claiming his second Wimbledon title on Sunday, Andy Murray is now the odds-on favourite with many bookmakers to be voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year. Bet365 make him an even money chance, with Anthony Joshua a distant second at best odds of 8/1 with Ladbrokes. An Olympic gold double for Mo Farah or another victory for Jessica Ennis-Hill could change the picture, and they are currently at 14/1 and 20/1 respectively. Gareth Bale is 12/1 with Paddy Power and that could be worth an each-way punt after he helped Real Madrid to Champions League success and then led Wales to the semi-finals of Euro 2016.
2. Serena 7/4 to pass Graf’s tally in New York
After she defeated Angelique Kerber to claim a record-equalling 22nd Grand Slam title, Serena Williams has been shortening in the betting for the final major of the year, next month’s US Open. Her seventh Wimbledon title, meant Williams matched Steffi Graf’s tally of major titles and she can go one better if she claims a seventh success at Flushing Meadows. At 34 she shows no sign of losing her grip on the no.1 ranking, having appeared in seven of the last eight Grand Slam finals, winning five of them. Prior to her semi-final loss last year, she’d won three successive titles in New York and she is now a best price of just 7/4 with Bet365 to make it four in five years.
3. Two-time winner Harrington looking to revive past glories
It’s more than 20 years since Padraig Harrington won the first of his 30 career titles and as a two-time Open champion with a love of links golf, he is worth considering in the betting for the year’s third major. The 44-year-old Irishman won the Open in both 2007 and 2008 and although he hasn’t made much of an impression on subsequent editions, he will head to Royal Troon this week in confident mood after some decent rounds at the Scottish Open. He couldn’t keep up with the pace setters over the weekend and it might be a little far-fetched to suggest he can win in Ayrshire given the form he has displayed for much of this season, but he is 80/1 in the First Round Leader betting with Paddy Power who are offering eight places in both this and the outright market.
4. Pogba rumours spark further United gamble
We mentioned last week that Man United have been the subject of plenty of interest in the betting for next season’s Premier League title and the big gamble has continued this week, with rumours of an imminent bid for French star Paul Pogba forcing Jose Mourinho’s side in to a best price of 7/2 from 4/1 a week ago. That’s a significant move given that United were 6/1 at the start of the summer, but there’s little doubt that if they can land the Juventus midfielder it will be the biggest deal of the window and a huge improvement on the midfield options that were available to Louis Van Gaal last term. As United’s odds shorten, the favourites Man City continue to drift, out to a best price of 5/2 with Betfred.
5. Allardyce heads the betting for England boss
Sam Allardyce is the market leader in the betting for the next England manager, with newspaper reports on Sunday having suggested that the FA has been in touch with the Sunderland boss regarding the position vacated by Roy Hodgson in the wake of England’s shock exit at the hands of Iceland at Euro 2016. The FA has since denied making contact with either Allardyce or Jurgen Klinsmann, another of the frontrunners, but the pair remain the focus of the betting. At the time of writing, Allardyce is a best price of 6/4 with Betfair, with USA and former Germany coach Klinsmann a 4/1 shot with Sky Bet. One alternative option which has been mooted is the appointment of Guus Hiddink to oversee a transition to a younger coach, perhaps Bournemouth’s Eddie Howe, and the veteran Dutchman who has twice had spells with Chelsea is available at stand-out odds of 22/1 with Sky Bet.