Premier League 2020/21 Top Four Predictions, Odds and Picks

Premier League Top Four

  • Manchester City have wrapped up the first Champions League qualification spot
  • Manchester United and Leicester City currently lead Chelsea and Liverpool
  • Surprise packages Everton and West Ham United are also in the mix

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Premier League Top Four Odds

Odds taken 2 March 2021 from DraftKings Sportsbook

Team Odds
Manchester City N/A
Manchester United -590
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Liverpool -182
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Leicester City -162
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Chelsea -139
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West Ham United +500
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Tottenham Hotspur +600
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Everton +900
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Aston Villa +1200
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Arsenal +2000
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Premier League top four Predictions and Picks

Neither the title nor the relegation battle has been decided yet, but perhaps the most interesting thing to watch for the remainder of the Premier League season is the race for the top four. Runaway leaders Manchester City have already sewn up one spot, which leaves three Champions League qualification places up for grabs as the business end of the campaign approaches.

Manchester United are currently second and looks set to finish there, albeit as distant runners-up. For more detail on their season, check out our article on the Premier League title winners market.

Liverpool have had a disappointing title defense, but they should have the quality to get over the line. Back Chelsea to take the final spot over Leicester, who have started to wobble just like the last term.

Pick:

Chelsea (-139)

How to Watch Premier League

Premier League Information
What 2020/21 Premier League season
Where England
When Now – 23 May 2021
How to Watch NBC Sports

Liverpool and Chelsea Will Hope Their Experience Makes the Difference

In many ways, this has been a season to forget for Liverpool. Seeking back-to-back titles for the first time since the early 1980s, the Reds are currently sixth in the standings. They were occupying the top spot as recently as late December, but a disastrous run of six defeats in their last 10 matches has sent them tumbling down the table. There have been extenuating circumstances – not least crippling injuries in defense, with Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez having missed most of the season – but Liverpool also looks fatigued after playing Klopp’s brand of heavy metal soccer for several years.

The season has also not played out the way Chelsea were hoping it would. The Blues spent more money in last summer’s transfer market than any other team in the world. Yet Frank Lampard failed to get them in the title conversation and, despite his status as a club legend, was sacked by Roman Abramovich in January. If the idea was to get Chelsea back into the top-four race, the decision to sack Lampard and hire Thomas Tuchel looks to have paid off.

Both Liverpool and Chelsea are outside the top four at present, but they are the best two picks to qualify for the Champions League alongside the two Manchester clubs. Their superior individual quality and experience should ultimately make the difference.

Leicester and West Ham Have Overachieved So Far This Term

Leicester sits third at the time of writing and have done tremendously well so far this season. The Foxes are not a member of the so-called ‘big six’, yet they will almost certainly finish higher than seventh. A place in next season’s edition of the Champions League is well within their grasp, even if there have been some worrying signs of late.

Leicester supporters will not need reminding about their team’s late-season collapse in 2019/20. At one stage Brendan Rodgers’ side were 14 points clear of Manchester United in the race for the top four, but they ended up finishing behind Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men after winning only four of their last 17 matches. Amid a poor home record and an injury crisis that shows no signs of abating, Leicester could yet drop out of the top four again this season.

West Ham have been the surprise package of the Premier League campaign. Widely tipped to be part of the relegation dogfight, they have exceeded even the expectations of their own supporters in battling for a top-four place. David Moyes’ reputation as an astute manager has been restored after difficult spells at Manchester United and Sunderland.

Moyes has made West Ham harder to beat and tougher to play against. They are well organized and have caused numerous team problems on the counter-attack. In the end, though, they might fall just short of a Champions League place. Even finishing in the top six would be a brilliant achievement – the Hammers have only done that once before in the Premier League era.


Editor’s pick:


Arsenal and Tottenham Have Plenty to Do to in the Final Months

The bookmakers, and many other followers of the Premier League, would have expected Arsenal and Tottenham to be ahead of Leicester and West Ham at this stage of the season. Neither north London side can be ruled out of the top-four race just yet, but it would take a special run of results for Mikel Arteta or Jose Mourinho to be celebrating Champions League qualification in May.

These two teams were at opposite ends of the division at one stage. After beating their local rivals in December, Tottenham stayed top of the league and Arsenal sat 15th. Now, they are just two points and two places apart in mid-table.

Draft Kings are more confident of Spurs’ chances of gatecrashing the top four than Arsenal’s, partly because they have a points advantage and a game in hand. They also have better players, particularly in attack. Despite Tottenham’s general struggles, Son Heung-min and Harry Kane have been two of the Premier League’s standout performers this term. Mourinho’s men could yet push the top four close, but they have probably given themselves too much to do.

The same can be said of Arsenal, who have been undermined by inconsistency all season long. Arteta is beginning to get his ideas across and the Gunners have picked up since the turn of the year, but a top-four finish will surely be beyond them. Everton and Aston Villa are considered stronger candidates by the bookmakers, but they too are outsiders as the race for the Champions League heats up.

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Greg Lea

Expert on Soccer

Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts.



Email: [email protected]