Reigning English Premier League champions Manchester United is the team to beat again this season, but not because they have the most talented players. United has the best squad in terms of depth and one of the best managers, if not the best, in the league in Sir Alex Ferguson. There are a few question points with the club though and they have to improve on last year’s poor record away from Old Trafford.
United self destructed in the Champion League Final against Spain’s Barcelona last season in a 3-1 loss, but it doesn’t affect their EPL chances this season
As an attacking squad, United is one of the strongest squads in world with the likes of Javier Hernandez, Dimitar Berbatov, Michael Owen, Federico Macheda, Danny Welbeck, Ashley Young, Antonio Valencia, Nani, Park Ji-Sung, Mame Biram Diouf, and Ryan Giggs.
However, we could see Macheda, Welbeck, and Diouf go out on loan again to other EPL clubs before the season kicks off. In addition, Hernandez could miss the first few weeks of the season due to a concussion he received in the club’s pre-season tour of America.
Even some of the United defenders are pretty adept at attacking, such and Patrice Evra, and Brazilian twins Fabio and Rafael. Defensively, there are some question marks. Nemanja Vidic is one of the best central defenders in the world, but Evra, Rafael, Fabio, and Jonny Evans can all be caught out of position on occasion. As for Rio Ferdinand, he brings nothing to the club in terms of skill, pace and imagination, and actually hurts the team when playing. Chris Smalling would be a better option or newcomer Phil Jones.
The defending midfielders such as Anderson, Michael Carrick, Darren Fletcher, Darron Gibson, and Tom Cleverly are all good players, but not spectacular.
There could be a problem in goal as Edwin Van der Saar retired in the summer and Ferguson signed Spanish Under-21 keeper David de Gea to join the likes of Ben Amos, Anders Lindegaard, and Tomas Kuszczak in net.
Midfield star Paul Scholes also retired and rumours of United signing either Inter Milan’s Wesley Sneijder or Arsenal’s Samir Nasri as a replacement have failed to materialize. However, Sneijder could still join the team, which would be a huge boost to the midfield as he’s one of the best in the world.
Ferguson is a good manager, but not the god many fans make him out to be. He often leaves top players out of the side and doesn’t even dress them for some cup games. He also has a bad habit of changing his tactics when playing against top teams instead of playing to his side’s strength, which is attacking soccer. Still, he’s probably the best the EPL has.
United might need to score more goals than last season if the goalkeepers and defenders struggle, but they have the firepower to do so.
Wayne Rooney has had an excellent pre-season and if he keeps it up he could be a good bet for the Golden Boot winner. Rooney is a very streaky player, but when he is on he is one of the fiercest strikers in the game. One tip I have is to use the live sports betting option at many online bookmakers to bet on Wayne Rooney when you are watching and has scored or seems poised. Live betting can provide value with prop bets on streaky players.
Manchester United Premier League Winner Odds
Manchester United Prediction
If they stay relatively injury free, Manchester United should retain their title this season. The +188 odds seem fair with Chelsea being their biggest competition and a revamped Manchester City squad finally giving Man U a battle worthy of a rivalry. That being said Manchester United is the best team and they should be able to put together a full season of winning football making +188 reasonable odds.