Wolverhampton 2018-19 Betting Preview: Will Premier League New Boys Make Noise?
Wolverhampton Wanderers. Pictured: Joao Moutinho
Wolverhampton 2018-19 Premier League Betting Odds
- To Win Title: +25000
- To Be Relegated: +650
- Point Total: 42.5 (Over -150/Under +120)
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Wolverhampton are back in the Premier League for the first time since 2011-12, and a lot has changed at the Molineux since Wolves dipped into the Championship. Most of this has to do with Jorge Mendes, one of soccer’s most powerful agents, who is connected to Wolves because their Chinese owners also have a stake in Mendes’ company. It’s very weird, but apparently legal, and has put the West Midlands club in a unique situation.
Wolves made it clear before last season that they were coming for the Premiership. They brought in Portuguese manager Nuno Espirito Santo, a Mendes client who previously managed at Valencia and Porto, to oversee the ascent. Along with Nuno, Wolves bought one of Portugal’s brightest young talents, Ruben Neves.
Before signing with Wolverhampton, Neves was courted by Chelsea and Liverpool, and yet he decided to play in England’s second division. With Neves running things in the midfield, Wolves ran away with the Championship and earned automatic promotion to the Premier League. Even before they were promoted, people speculated that they could make some serious noise in the top flight in 2018-19.
That noise only grew louder in the offseason, as Wolves brought in more talented players from Portugal. They signed Rui Patricio — last seen playing goalkeeper for Portugal at the World Cup — at the beginning of the month. Midfielder Joao Moutinho, who ranks third all-time with 113 appearances for Portugal, signed from Monaco, a club that will play in the Champions League this season.
It is unheard of for a newly promoted side to have this much talent, and the odds back up that notion. Wolves are the seventh-favorite to win the Premier League behind the “big six.” It’s pretty incredible that a newly promoted side is ahead of 10 teams that played in the Premier League last season.
The Bet To Watch
For most newly promoted sides, the goal is simply to stay up. That usually means that 40 points is the magic number, as it almost guarantees survival. After opening at 39.5 points (with the crazy juice on the over), Wolverhampton’s point total moved to 42.5 (-150/+120). I think they will hit that over with relative ease, but think there’s better value on a couple of other futures.
I like either Wolves to finish in the top half +110, or if you’re feeling frisky, Wolves to finish in the top six at +1000. Chelsea and Arsenal are both undergoing major transitions, and if they struggle out of the gate, things could go off the rails, which would leave the gate open for the next best team. And that may very well be Wolverhampton.