Premier League Predictions: Your 2019/20 Season Preview

The team at TPSS are giving their Premier League Predictions for the 2019/20 Premier League season.

Be sure to check out the Betfair Hub and the Betfair Exchange for up-to-the-minute Premier League and football odds.

Go where the value is over the Premier League season. Bet against other punters on the Betfair Exchange.

Season Preview

Though we had an African Cup of Nations, Gold Cup and Copa America the English summer just been has felt like a welcome break from the whirlwind of football we were treated to last season. When the dust settles, 2018/19 will be remembered as a true vintage as the best two teams in Europe secured the Premier League and the Champions League trophies. It took penalties to separate Man City and Liverpool on Sunday in the curtain-raising, half-friendly Community Shield and the two northern heavyweights look set to battle it out again for domestic spoils.

Last Season's Top two

Such is their dominance, Liverpool and Manchester City make up over 90% of the Betfair market before a ball is kicked in anger and you’d be hard-pressed for making a case for not backing the $1.10 that either team is crowned winner come May. Despite Liverpool’s progress last season and the fine margin that City won the league by – decided by a single point with Liverpool losing just once all season (to City) – the Blues are shorter this time around for victory. They were available at $1.70 at the off last season but this August they are just $1.50 to make it a hat-trick of titles.

History shows us that we shouldn’t look outside last season’s top-three for potential winners. While everyone remembers Leicester, that really was a once in a lifetime shock as 25 of the 27 Premier League winners have finished in the top-three in the previous season. Last season was a true outlier though with Liverpool finishing 25 points above third-placed Chelsea. To put that into perspective, Chelsea were closer on points to Crystal Palace in 12th than they were Liverpool.

We make the prices about right for the top-two. Liverpool might look a tempting $4.20 to win the league but come May it’ll be nearly 11,000 days since they last won the league and last season they again faltered when in a commanding lead.

The Rest of the big six

Chelsea have an untested, new manager at the helm in club legend Frank Lampard and they’ve lost their superstar Eden Hazard. The Belgian scored or assisted 31 of Chelsea’s 63 goals last season and there is a huge amount of pressure on his ‘replacement’ 20-year old Christian Pulisic. The American is a potential great but has to come on a long way to carry this side. The Blues have the Champions League to contend with as well and they look more likely to finish outside than inside the top-four.

The market, correctly, rates Tottenham as the closest challengers to the Big Two. The North London outfit finally moved to their new stadium at the end of last season so they’ll get a full round of home fixtures for the first time in three years after having to play their games at a sometimes half-full Wembley recently. Once again, Spurs have handled the off-season with aplomb keeping all of their main stars. For the first time in three transfer windows they’ve actually spent some money as they smashed their record fee in signing Tanguy Ndombele. Buoyed by memories of their remarkable run to the Champions League final, a settled squad, a great manager and a dazzling new stadium this has to be the year for Spurs. A Premier League title looks likely out of their grasp but they’ll need some silverware if they are to keep Kane, Alli and Poch for yet another year if this one proves barren again.

Another club that smashed their transfer record is Arsenal. Worryingly, they’ve strengthened where they probably didn’t need to. As they have since the Wenger days they look short on defensive and midfield muscle. There was little between the three London clubs in the chase for the final two Champions League spots last year but what shone through was the Gunners’ porous defence and though the singing of William Saliba will help it won’t be enough. The big difference between Arsenal and their arch-rivals Spurs is that while Spurs kept hold of everyone they’ll need if they are to mount a title challenge, Arsenal lost their main man. Aaron Ramsey’s departure to Juventus will leave a huge hole.

With doubts over Arsenal and Chelsea, Manchester United have a huge opportunity to capitalise and become a regular feature in the Champions League spots once again. The Red Devils limped over the line as their dreams of finish fourth quickly became nightmares but under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer they gained more points than all but the Big Two. United’s haul of 41 points from 21 games under the Norwegian suggests that if they can repeat that form they’ll pick up enough points to finish in the top-four. At the time of writing United still have Paul Pogba in their squad and if they can retain the Frenchman and keep him happy then they are the most likely team to finish fourth.

The Best of the Rest

Wolves were the best of the rest last season and, incredibly, they actually finished above Arsenal on Expected Points. The midlands-club really impressed after taking the Championship by storm the season previously and we’d be keen to back them for a top-six spot and in any match-ups vs the Gunners if it weren’t for their involvement in the Europa League qualifying. We saw last season what an affect that had on Burnley and while Wolves squad is deeper than Burnley’s 12-months ago a 6,370km round trip to Armenia before the season starts puts us off getting involved. We’ll certainly be looking for opportunities to keep Wolves onside throughout the season.

There are then a whole host of clubs that we don’t see in any imminent danger of being relegated but that should also struggle to test the big sides in competing for the European spots. In no particular order we group Leicester, Everton, Crystal Place, Bournemouth, Watford, Southampton, West Ham and Burnley. The latter might seem vulnerable but as mentioned above they started slowly last time because of the Europa League qualifying and not having that this season will be a huge weight off their minds.

The Relegation battle

That leaves us with the new boys plus Newcastle and Brighton as relegation fodder. The good news for Aston Villa, Sheffield United and Norwich is that there are certain doubts about the other two. Newcastle should be the team with the least worries given their summer spending and their 13th placed finish last season but Rafa Benitez’s departure has left a sour taste in the mouths of already disgruntled Toon fans. Steve Bruce can only compete with Rafa on the scales and it’s likely he’ll again be found out at the top-level. At the moment it seems like everything Mike Ashley touches turns to stone and with thousands of unsold season tickets and an opening five fixtures that sees them face Arsenal, Spurs and Liverpool the bell could toll early for Newcastle.

At the time of writing, Brighton are yet to sign Brentford forward Neal Maupay but the deal looks like it will go through. Maupay will be vital to the Seagull’s efforts in trying to stay up in what is sure to be a tricky first full season in charge for Graeme Potter. There was much written about how it was harsh to dismiss Chris Hughton given all he has done for the club but one thing is for sure the decision wasn’t made on a limb. When you are owned by the best football betting brain in the industry you know that careful analysis went into every facet of the performance. Maupay promises a style of attacking football that will be a breath of fresh air for the seaside club. He has brought with him some shrewd signings from Swansea and did wonders on a shoestring there and at Swedish club Ostersunds. In comparison to the mood at the other end of the country you have to fancy Brighton to do better than Newcastle this season.

Aston Villa are anyone’s guess. They’ve done a Fulham and spent bundles in the transfer window after getting promoted as they’ve added 12 players to their squad. Their fans will be hoping they can avoid doing a Fulham though and bouncing straight back to the Championship. In fairness, Villa should never have gone down in the first place and they look far stronger than the other relegation contenders.

Norwich were slightly fortunate to gain automatic promotion to the Premier League as they took advantage of Leeds’ mightily unlucky third-placed finish. The Canaries will come into the season with the confidence of knowing that all of the last five Championship winners have stayed up in the Premier League the following season. Norwich will have to learn from Fulham’s mistakes last season though. In a similar fashion they are fantastic going forward but leaky at the back. If they can sort out the latter then they should be able to survive in the top-flight.

If Villa are like Wolves and Norwich like Fulham, are Sheffield United like Huddersfield? They are odds-on to go down League despite finishing second in the Championship last season. Expected Points shows us that they should have finished above Norwich (but still behind Leeds) though. Sheffield United were in League One three years ago and will relish their opportunity against the big boys as they make Brammall Lane a hostile environment to visit. The Blades have spent well and while they likely aren’t good enough to stay up we won’t be backing them at odds-on to go down before the off.

Betting Strategy

 BACK – Tottenham Top 4 Finish at $1.60 for 1 unit

 BACK – Man Utd Top 4 Finish at $2.36 for 1 unit

 LAY – Arsenal Top 4 Finish at $2.36 for 1 unit

 LAY – Arsenal Top 6 Finish at $1.32 for 1 unit

 BACK – Newcastle Relegation at $3.45 for 1 unit

 LAY – Brighton Relegation at $2.88 for 1 unit

 LAY – Burnley Relegation at $3.10 for 1 unit

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