Liverpool 2018-19 Betting Preview: Klopp’s Reds Are Set For Contention
Jim Dedmon, USA Today Sports. Pictured: Jurgen Klopp
Liverpool 2018-19 Premier League Betting Odds
- To Win Title: +375
- To Be Relegated: +150000
- Point Total: 79.5 (Over -128/Under -108)
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It’s fair to say that now is an exciting time to be a Liverpool fan. The previous campaign ended in heartbreak with a defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League final, but the Reds exceeded all expectations to get that far and have enjoyed a very productive summer.
Jurgen Klopp will be delighted with the new additions to his squad thus far, as Liverpool have solved a number of issues from said loss in Kiev in May.
The most obvious of those comes in goal, and after Loris Karius’ nightmare performance when it mattered most, the club were finally forced into action. Alisson Becker brings a far greater pedigree than the German Karius, who, along with deputy Simon Mignolet, has underwhelmed since arriving at Anfield.
Alisson, the Brazil No. 1 ahead of Manchester City keeper Ederson in the international pecking order, enjoyed a fantastic season with Roma last season and has signed despite strong interest from European champions Madrid and Chelsea.
Meanwhile the shock acquisition of Fabinho and long-awaited introduction of Naby Keita have given the midfield a significant face-lift, while Xherdan Shaqiri was an astute cut-price addition from relegated Stoke to help bolster an already fearsome attack.
The lack of defensive recruits, however, is a slight concern, though Alisson’s arrival should give a back four that has so often looked nervous more focus and confidence. It is, however, the aforementioned Keita who has understandably got Liverpool fans all giddy.
A bundle of energy in the middle of the park with the power and agility to break the lines of deep-lying opponents, Keita is the type of player who can help the team eliminate those dropped points in games they really should win. Liverpool’s record against the teams around them at the top has been strong since Klopp’s appointment, and there’s a growing sense that if any side can unsettle the reigning champions in Manchester City, it’s the Merseysiders.
I’ve gotten this far without mentioning the Holy triumvirate of Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Premier League record-breaker Mohamed Salah after all, and the frequency with which all three registered on the same scoresheet last season was quite remarkable.
Elsewhere, Virgil van Dijk, who this time last year was prevented from making the move to Anfield, has enjoyed a full training camp this time around, and his leadership began to have a significant effect on the side in the final months of last season. The Dutchman’s composure even started to rub off on Dejan Lovren!
The Bet to Watch
All in all then, this may well be the strongest Liverpool side heading into a campaign since the club’s stranglehold over what was then known as the First Division in the ’80s. The issue is that in Manchester City they are competing for top honors with one of the finest sides, if not the finest, of the modern Premier League era.
The gap between the two was a whopping 25 points last season, with Manchester United and Tottenham wedged between them. Neither will be the case this season in my view, and while toppling Pep Guardiola’s superb squad will be a tall order, Liverpool perhaps have the best chance of cutting them down to size. I think the best tip for Liverpool would be to back Man City to win the league with Liverpool finishing second at +175.