The favourites for winning the European top five leagues in the 2020/2021

29.9.2020.  
The favourites for winning the European top five leagues in the 2020/2021

Last season in football was the most unusual since we started playing the beautiful game and the following one will be the second-most peculiar one. No full stadiums, different entrance routes for squads, no handshakes before the matches but the same goal as ever - title. See who the bookies have as favourites for winning the European top five leagues - England, Spain, Italy, Germany, and France.


The previous season ended most tragically in France where the championship was stopped and positions were awarded based on an average of points earned per matches played.


In three of five leagues, the favourites won the titles and continued their streaks - Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus, and Bayern Munich. While in England and Spain the second-biggest favourite won the trophy. Real Madrid at 2.37 and Liverpool at 3.5 despite winning by a landslide in the end.


See where the oddsmakers may have gone wrong now in the top five league favourites list.


Ligue 1


Paris Saint-Germain - 1.12


Theoretically, all 20 teams in Ligue 1 can win the title but realistically only one team can lose it - Paris Saint-Germain. An off season that happened when Monaco was in full force seems absolutely impossible and the Saints shouldn't have any problems lifting the title fourth time in a row. Despite losing the first two games of the season - that was just the consequence of a Champions League final defeat.


Uncharacteristically, PSG has yet to spend big this summer and the departures outweigh the arrivals. Mauro Icardi's loan was completed with a full move, reserve goalkeeper Sergio Rico arrived from Sevilla, and right-back Alessandro Florenzi was loaned from Roma.


On the other hand, two club legends Thiago Silva and Edinson Cavani left on a free. Thomas Meunier did so as well and moved to Borussia Dortmund, while the reserve goalkeeper Alphonse Areola was loaned out to Fulham.


Thomas Tuchel will continue to be questioned but he will most likely have the credit of this season to work with unless PSG gets eliminated in CL early.


Other sides don't deserve to be mentioned in the title race according to the bookies.


Lyon has the best odds at 26 but the side is having a yard sale, not a transfer window. Lille is next with an odd of 29, while Rennes and Marseille are at 34. With the latter being the best pick if you believe in a Leicester-like miracle.


Premier League


Liverpool - 2.0


After winning the first title following a 30-year drought, a title defence seems to be on the menu for Jurgen Klopp's side. The club hasn't seen many transfers in the previous transfer windows despite two back to back Champions League finals but this summer the side brought in respectable additions.


Diogo Jota came in for €44,700,000 to replace the attacking trio when needed, Thiago arrived from Bayern Munich to orchestrate the midfield, and Andrew Robertson got a backup in Kosta Tsimikas. While only Dejan Lovren and Adam Lallana left the side.


It's pretty much the same side who won the last trophy and reached two CL finals, winning one. So far, the team doesn't seem to struggle from the fatigue of playing in a very physically-demanding way.


Manchester City - 2.2


When the odds were released for the Premier League winner Manchester City was a bigger favourite then Liverpool. Somehow. Yet the bookies have seen that Manchester City wasn't having a fluke season last year and that their problems are more chronic. If Leo Messi had joined them, the list would be completely different but he didn't.


City had secured only three major signings, winger Ferran Torres arrived first followed by the versatile centre-back Nathan Ake who will be the backup for Aymeric Laporte. The biggest purchase will be that of a starting right-back Ruben Dias who is only 23 and might need time to flourish.


On the other end, Leroy Sane and David Silva left Etihad and their presence is going to be filled with Torres and Phil Foden. A shaky start to the season and a 5:2 loss to Leicester saw many pundits write off City altogether but the congested season might benefit a technical team more than the more-physical of Liverpool.


Chelsea - 19.0


Bringing in seven players for more than €250,000 can bump you up only to a third favourite in the English Premier League. Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, Hakim Ziyech, Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell, Malanga Sarr, Edouard Mendy - all of them are enough to bring the Blues past Tottenham, Arsenal, and United who were all in front last season.


Frank Lampard showing what he can in the first season at Stamford Bridge without the ability to sign players was an extra push certainly, as are the more matured players who were already in London. Two wingers Pedro and Willian left after their contracts ended but the side looks well full. We can expect the odds to significantly drop next season for Chelsea and to have a three-tie title race once again.


Arsenal - 29.0


Despite finishing last season eight-placed, bookies are placing the Gunners ahead of United, Leicester, and Tottenham in the title race. Obviously, a great deal of respect is thrown at Mikel Arteta and the last season's woes seem to be mostly written off to the previous managers. With some betting places even holding Arsenal at 21 odds.


The FA Cup and the Community Shield triumphs helped Arsenal's odds more so than the arrivals of Gabriel, Willian, Pablo Mari, and Cedric Soares. As did the extension of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's contract. Emiliano Martinez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are the only players who left so far although Sokratis, Lucas Torreira, and even Matteo Guendouzi might depart too. But then the club will bring in worthy reinforcements.


Manchester United - 29.0


Even though Ole Gunnar Solskjaer managed to get the fourth Champions League-bearing spot in the previous iteration of the Premiership, the oddsmakers see the Red Devils far from being top-five league favourites any time soon it seems.


With Donny van de Beek being the only signing so far, it's clear to see who is to blame for this. Ed Woodward has failed to reinforce the team as it was needed and only a few days remain before the transfer window finishes. Alexis Sanchez is the only notable departure although it’s only visible on the checking books, not on the pitch.


Leicester follows the top four with an odds of 41 but the way the Foxes held up in the early part of the season and the way they reinforced this summer, they could probably be higher up. They could be the dark horses to give Liverpool the biggest problem.


What's surprising is that Everton is deemed at having better chances than Tottenham, even though Spurs landed a whale in the Wales man Gareth Bale, alongside other solid signings. The Toffees stand at 51 ods and Jose Mourinho is disrespected with 67.


La Liga


Real Madrid - 2.25


Unlike last year, Real Madrid are the favourites to win the title with 2.25 even though the club didn't buy any players. Uncharacteristically would be an understatement. But the club president Florentino Perez is wary of the financial crisis caused by the lack of fans. Only three youngsters were recalled from loans - Martin Odegaard, Andriy Lunin, and Alvaro Odriozola.


James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale are the biggest departures in name-value most of all as they didn't feature as much in games. With a focus on youth in the past several years on the transfer market, Zinedine Zidane should have a better chance of winning the title than in the previous year.


Barcelona - 2.37


Somehow, the oddsmakers placed Barcelona right close to Real Madrid even though the club had the worst transfer window of its history probably. Three major players were given out for peanuts - Ivan Rakitic, Luis Suarez, and Arturo Vidal. Messi even demanded to leave and is now publically criticizing the board.


Miralem Pjanic arrived but the Bosnian is in a clear decline in form and was traded for a much younger Arthur Melo. Youngsters Trincao, Matheus Fernandes, and Pedri were brought in while Nelson Semedo and Carles Perez were sold off as well. The club is still looking at right-backs and other signings as the team was thin even last year. The odds are this high only for one reason - Messi. Frankly, it's a pretty good reason.


Atletico Madrid - 7.0


With the odds for Atletico Madrid being so high, this is the value bet of all the picks in the European top five leagues. Yannick Carrasco is back fully, Luis Suarez is arrived and scored two and assisted one in his debut, while only Alvaro Morata is the significant player out. With the Uruguayan being a clear improvement.


Last season was a transitional one for Diego Simeone's side as he conducted a generational switch. This year he will have no excuses and will have the best chance to topple Real and Barca especially. A title is needed to establish the big three in La Liga and not have Atleti as some sort of a step-brother to the two giants.


Bundesliga 


Bayern Munich - 1.12


After winning a treble with style points Bayern Munich has the same chances of winning their league as PSG but Germany has stiffer competition. Bavarians will have to deal with the departure of Thiago, and possibly that of Javi Martinez.


They haven't been that active in the incoming department as well with only Leroy Sane arriving from Manchester City although it's a formidable reinforcement. Alexander Nubel came on a free but that was well known back in early spring. Michael Cuisance is bound to leave on a loan and the squad will once again be thin for Hansi Flick, but hey, it worked out the last time and there are fewer games in the Bundesliga.


Borussia Dortmund - 7.0


Even though BVB refused to sell Jadon Sancho and has a respectable team with Erling Haaland, Marco Reus, Julian Brandt, and the others, the Millionaires are still way off Bayern. Chasing their only ninth Bundesliga title and first since 2012 will be the goal but the question is for how long?


Will the injuries avoid Reus for once and can the truly young team compete with the treble winners? It seems unlikely but with Thomas Meunier, Jude Bellingham, and an extra year of experience, BVB is better suited than last year.


RB Leipzig - 17.0


Maybe it was expected that the odds for Leipzig's title race will drop more drastically but the Red Bull backed team is facing the race without its former key players. Timo Werner joined Chelsea, while Diego Demme moved to Napoli in the winter and his absence was felt in the league where the performances dropped considerably.


Tall, powerful, and technical striker Alexander Sorloth arrived to replace Werner and RB will have its Norweigan forward, while Hee-chan Hwang arrived from the brother-club Red Bull Salzburg. Monaco loaned out Benjamin Henrichs to the ambitious side but a race for the second place with BVB seems more realistic for both teams.


Serie A


Juventus - 2.1


The league with the most evenly matched title race also has the longest-reigning club in Juventus. That boasts Cristiano Ronaldo at that. While Juventus wouldn't be the clear favourite if it competed in other top five leagues, Italy is still Old Lady's to lose.


This seems likelier than ever with an inexperienced manager in Andrea Pirlo and the weakest transfer window the Turin side has produced in quite some time. Arthur Melo arrived instead of Miralem Pjanic and that is a clear upgrade. Youngster Dejan Kulusevski was bought earlier last season but was loaned out, now he's already a starter.


But the signings of Alvaro Morata and Weston McKennie don't seem as the dealings of a team gunning for all three fronts. While the side lost stability in the departures of Blaise Matuidi and Gonzalo Higuain.


Inter - 2.87


As bad as Juve's transfer window was, the biggest reason for the equalization of odds in Serie A is Inter. Antonio Conte stayed at the club after a brilliant first season that saw the side end up with just a point fewer than Juve. He also received proper reinforcements for his style of play.


Primarily, Achraf Hakimi, a perfect wing-back for an offensive 3-5-2 formation. The finalization of loanee transfers Nicolo Barella and Stefano Sensi was important as was the return of the young striker Andrea Pinamonti. Arturo Vidal, Alexis Sanchez, and Aleksandar Kolarov arrived for free or peanuts and also fit Conte's philosophy.


Inter even reinforced by having the executives forgive Radja Nainggolan and allow him back in contention. With Diego Godin being the only last season's important player who moved on.


Atalanta - 10.0


After almost reaching the Champions League semi-finals the La Dea is no longer the best-kept secret in Italy and the whole Europe knows of the mighty football Gian Piero Gasperini's team showcases. Finishing third last season with the best offence in the league, La Dea managed to hold on to the most of the team.


Only Timothy Castagne had left the side and the money was invested in Mario Pasalic, Aleksey Miranchuk, Sam Lammers, and Simone Muratore. With the way Atalanta approaches opponents on the pitch - with no respect, a title race isn't too far off and with the firepower the Bergamo side demonstrated, it will be must-see-TV at the very least.


Napoli - 13.0


With 11 sales for over two million and saying goodbyes to long time club servants, Napoli is still holding quite high in the oddsmakers' eyes. The club was left without a constant in the last seven years - Jose Callejon, but also without midfielder boss Allan. While the other sales have been loanees or fringe players.


But Aurelio de Laurentiis brought in just one signing in Victor Osimhen, paid him handsomely and Gennaro Gattuso is clearly getting a lot of respect by the people deciding the odds. Even though the side struggled significantly before he came.


AC Milan - 17


The Zlatan Ibrahimovic effect. Rossoneri look like a different side ever since the veteran with a capital V came back last winter. The side is having a very good transfer window as well with Brahim Diaz arriving on loan, Ante Rebic making his loan permanent, Simon Kjaer arriving for cheap, and Sandro Tonali being the cherry on top.


While Suso, Andre Silva, and Ricardo Rodriguez said farewell to the red and black shirt. Stefano Pioli made the board give up on an agreement with highly-rated Ralf Rangnick and now he'll have to justify their decision for longer than a half-season.


Lazio - 26.0


Somewhat disrespectfully, Lazio is the last of the "real" title contenders on the list even though Biancocelesti were the only silverware contenders for Juve last time out for the longest time. Not to mention that the team from the capital still has Europe's Golden Shoe and Capocanoniere Ciro Immobile. While also managing to withhold the core team that has been together for so long - Joaquin Correa, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Luis Alberto, and others.


But Laziali can only blame their board for the lack of respect shown to the club as the sporting director Igli Tare failed to bring in noteworthy signings. Tall striker Vedat Muriqi is the only notable arrival that will most likely be in the starting line up but due to reaching Champions League after so many years, Simone Inzaghi deserved some fresher, better toys.


Where do you think the bookies got it wrong when it comes to favourites for winning the European top five leagues?




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