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Who will lead the Premiership at Christmas?

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Sports fans and gamblers are two types of people who love to look for trends and patterns. So it is safe to bet that this holds doubly true for those who like to place a flutter on sporting events. This goes some way to explaining the latest Christmas wager that is gaining in popularity among bookmakers, both online and on the high street.

No, it is not this year’s Christmas number one, although we can expect the debate to start on that very soon. The question filling the minds of sports betting football fans is which team will be leading the premiership when Santa comes to call.

Festive gift or a Christmas curse?

Of course, some rules seem to be made to be broken. Ten years ago, teams were practically falling over one another to avoid the prospect of leading the pack over the Christmas break, as nine times in the first 12 years of the Premiership’s existence, the team at the top of the table on Christmas day had slipped from the top rung by the end of the season.

Yet over the past seven years, the team leading at Christmas on all but one occasion – the exception being the 2013/14 season when Manchester City won despite being third in the table on Christmas day.

This brings us to two questions – who will be top of the table on Christmas day and will it be a Yuletide gift or a Christmas curse? Let’s find out what some of the top bookmakers think, along with some experts from within the game.

The Bookies’ view.

 Unsurprisingly, the top three in terms of odds for football’s “Christmas No. 1” mirror the top three in the table as it currently stands. Manchester City got off to a tremendous start. They have maintained it till now, and bookmakers are confident that they will still be leading the pack at Christmas, with them odds-on favourites at 1/3. Their Manchester rivals are at 3/1, and third placed Spurs are at 10/1.

Odds for who will be champions are not dissimilar, although many will find the slightly longer odds being offered on Tottenham at 14/1 a tempting wager after they came so close last year.

And what of Chelsea? You would always expect them to be there or thereabouts, and nine points is not the biggest deficit to make up. With forthcoming fixtures against Watford and Bournemouth before the big showdown with Manchester United on 05 November, anything is possible, and the 25/1 odds could be worth a punt, I will be paying a visit to although other results will have to go in their favour.

Expert opinions

The Daily Mail recently on who would win the Premiership, and most could not see beyond Manchester City. The conventional thinking is that City demonstrated their class last year by finishing third despite the massive injury issues they suffered and that this year, the title is there for the taking. With the strongest team and the best manager, it is a compelling argument, and it could be that the current odds of 2/5 are as good as they will get.