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Pre-season Punting – English Premier League Betting 2017/18

The Premier League 2016/17 season has only just finished, but betting on next season is already available.

Although we’ve got a summer of transfer comings and goings to take into account, it can pay to get an early pre-season punt on if on the hunt for some betting value, particularly if you can get your hands on a Betfair bonus bet offer or a similar such deal from other top bookmakers.

Favourites

All the betting to win Premier League 2017/18 will focus on the ‘Big 6’ although, unlike last season when Chelsea and Liverpool benefited from having no European distractions, all the main contenders will have to cope with trips to the continent between their domestic duties over the coming campaign.

Defending champions Chelsea should have a reasonably settled squad, although speculation as to Diego Costa’s future continues to suggest he will depart. Eden Hazard, who could miss the start of the new season through injury anyway, has hinted that a move to Real Madrid would interest him.

Manchester City are the early pre-season favourites, having already spent close on £80 million on Monaco midfielder Bernardo Silva and Benfica goalkeeper Ederson. The squad at Pep Guardiola’s disposal is already as good as any in the Premier League. This season they need to deliver on that ability.

Tottenham Hotspur’s hopes can’t be helped by having to re-locate to Wembley Stadium next season and they could be hard-pushed in retaining the services of all their star players should clubs with deeper pockets come calling.

Liverpool’s squad looked stretched at times last season so, with the additional European fixtures, they will need to make some shrewd acquisitions over the close season to compete for the title.

After two decades of Champions League football, Arsenal finally missed out on a top four finish last season. They did win the FA Cup for the third time in four seasons, but the Gunners have arguably never been less fancied for a title tilt throughout Arsene Wenger’s tenure. Should Alexis Sanchez depart, a major recruitment drive will surely be necessary to even have them in contention for a Champions League finish.

Manchester United claimed silverware in both the Europa League and the EFL Cup, but they were largely disappointing in the Premier League and their performances frequently made for tedious viewing. Further comings and goings are certain over the summer and a major upgrade in personnel in several areas is certainly required if the league title is to be back in the Old Trafford trophy cabinet a year from now.
Outsiders

Leicester City’s historic title win in 2015/16 proved that, just occasionally, miracles can happen in football. Realistically the chances of another shock of such seismic proportions occurring are remote in the extreme, but there’s always hope.

The club that are best placed to upset the odds has to be Everton, although with star striker Romelu Lukaku almost certainly moving on, it’s difficult to envisage them improving on last term’s seventh-place finish as things stand, let alone challenging for the title.

Relegation candidates

The three newly promoted teams are traditionally among the favourites for a swift return to the Championship, although more will be expected of Newcastle United this season and Brighton & Hove Albion also look capable of putting up a decent showing.

Huddersfield Town only promoted via the play-offs and are already early favourites for relegation. The current squad will almost certainly need some serious strengthening to have a fighting chance of survival, but make too many changes in personnel and they could lose the team spirit that took them to promotion in the first place.

There will be fears that Burnley could suffer from second-season syndrome, particularly with manager Sean Dyche being linked with other jobs and with Michael Keane and Andre Gray being the subject of interest from wealthier clubs.

Likewise, Swansea City only survived by the skin of their teeth and were the talismanic Gylfi Sigurdsson to move on over the summer, it would seriously damage their survival prospects.

Another potential contender for relegation could be Watford, with their tendency to chop and change managers likely to catch up with them sooner or later.

Premier League Golden Boot Winners Through the Years

The Premier League Golden Boot is a coveted trophy awarded to the player who has scored the most goals that season.  Few can argue the talent of the winners and in recent seasons it’s helped playing for a top four club.

With only a couple of games left of the 2016-17 season, Everton’s Romelu Lukaku leads the way with 24 goals – two more than last season’s winner Harry Kane.  Alexis Sánchez isn’t far behind on 21, with both Sunderland and Everton left to play.  Paddy Power football odds have the Chilean at 16/1 to overtake Lukaku and Kane at the end of the season.

Here’s a look at the previous winners of the Premier League Golden Boot since the league was renamed and rebranded in 1992:

1992-93 Teddy Sheringham (Nottingham Forest/Tottenham Hotspur) – 22 goals

Teddy Sheringham is the only player on the list to have won the Golden Boot whilst playing for two teams in the same season.  The former-England international scored one goal for Nottingham Forest in the inaugural Premier League season before transferring to Tottenham Hotspur where he became a hit.

Queens Park Rangers’ Les Ferdinand became the second player in Premier League history to score 20 goals as he finished runner-up for the Golden Boot award with his side finishing 5th.

1993-94 Andrew Cole (Newcastle United) – 34 goals

Andrew Cole became the first player to score 30 goals in a single Premier League season and did so in his first.  The prolific striker had helped fire Newcastle United into the top flight after signing from Bristol City in the latter stages of the season and would keep up his scoring streak in the Premier League also, helping Kevin Keegan’s side finish third – the joint-best from a team following their promotion.

Alan Shearer wasn’t far behind as the Blackburn Rovers striker scored 31 goals as his side finished runners-up to Manchester United.

1994-95 Alan Shearer (Blackburn Rovers) – 34 goals

This was the final Premier League season with 22 games.  As a result, Andrew Cole and Alan Shearer hold the record for scoring as many 34 goals each in a single season.  They played 40 and 42 games respectively.

Blackburn Rovers would win the Premier League behind goals from Shearer and Chris Sutton and Jack Walker’s money.  Unfortunately, Rovers have been poorly run over the past few years and will be playing League One football next season.

Robbie Fowler finished some nine goals behind Shearer in second place in the scoring chart.

1995-96 Alan Shearer (Blackburn Rovers) – 31 goals

Alan Shearer netted 30+ goals for a third consecutive season but Blackburn Rovers failed to sustain any serious defence of their Premier League title, finishing fourth and with Manchester United running away with the title.  Shearer became the first player to win the Golden Boot back-to-back; an achievement only matched by Thierry Henry and Robin van Persie since.

Robbie Fowler was runner-up once more, scoring a personal best 28 goals for Liverpool during 1995-96.

1996-97 Alan Shearer (Newcastle United) – 25 goals

Following a world record £15 million transfer from Blackburn Rovers to Newcastle United after winning the Euro 96 Golden Boot, Alan Shearer continued his goalscoring run as he won the Premier League Golden Boot for the third successive season.

Newcastle United would finish runners-up for a second consecutive season and following the resignation of manager Kevin Keegan in January the Magpies would start to drop down the league in the following seasons.

Arsenal’s Ian Wright finished runner-up with 23 goals.  His side would miss out on Champions League qualification as league runners-up to Newcastle by four goals as Europe’s elite club cup competition expanded to two teams from England and other European leagues.

1997-98 Chris Sutton (Blackburn Rovers), Dion Dublin (Coventry City) & Michael Owen (Liverpool) – 18 goals each

The Golden Boot was shared for the first time as there were three joint-top scorers each on a meagre 18 goals during the 1997-98 season.  Dennis Bergkamp top scored for champions Arsenal with only 16 goals, whilst Manchester United’s top scorer was Andrew Cole on 15 goals.  Owen is the youngest player to have ever ended the season as the Premier League top scorer.

Dion Dublin is the only player to have won the Golden Boot whilst finishing in the bottom half of the table as Coventry City finished 11th in 1997-98.  Both Dublin and Owen scored their 18 goals in 36 games meaning their 0.5 goals-to-games ration is the joint-lowest in Premier League history for a Golden Boot winner – sharing the record with Hasselbaink who had the same record the following season.

1998-99 Michael Owen (Liverpool), Dwight Yorke (Manchester United) & Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (Leeds United) – 18 goals each

For a second consecutive season the Golden Boot was shared by three players.  These are the only two instances this has happened as also the only two times that the award has been won with as few as 18 goals.

This was the season Manchester United famously won their treble – splitting their Premier League goals among four strikers – Dwight Yorke (18), Andrew Cole (17), Ole Gunnar Solskjær (12) and Teddy Sheringham (2).

1999-2000 Kevin Phillips (Sunderland) – 30 goals

Kevin Phillips’ 30 Premier League goals alongside strike partner Niall Quinn helped Sunderland to a seventh-place finish in the top flight under Peter Reid.  The current assistant coach at Derby County scored 53% of the Black Cats’ goals in 1999-2000 but only managed 31 goals for the same team in the following three seasons combined.

Newcastle’s Alan Shearer was still a highly-prolific striker, finishing behind Phillips with 23 goals.

2000-01 Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (Leeds United) – 23 goals

This is the last time that a player playing for a team finishing outside the top four won the Golden Boot as Chelsea finished 6th this season.  Interestingly, there was a winner in each of the three previous seasons that finished outside the top four also – Kevin Phillips and Sunderland finished 7th in 1999-2000, Michael Owen and Liverpool had also finished 7th in 1998-99 and both Chris Sutton (Blackburn Rovers – 6th) and Dion Dublin (Coventry City – 11th) finished outside the top four in 1997-98.

2000-01 was the campaign that Ipswich Town’s Marcus Stewart was a one season wonder when he netted 19 goals for George Burley’s side who finished in a shock fourth place immediately following their promotion.  However, they were relegated the following season.

2001-02 Thierry Henry (Arsenal) – 24 goals

Thierry Henry really turned on the gas in his third season in the Premier League following his £11 million move from Juventus as he would win the Golden Boot for the first time with 24 goals in 2001-02, having scored 17 goals in each of his two previous seasons.  Arsenal won the league this season and accomplished the same feat two years later when Henry picked up the Golden Boot for a second time.

The French striker scored one more goal than Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink (Chelsea), Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United) and Alan Shearer (Newcastle United).  

2002-03 Ruud van Nistelrooy (Manchester United) – 25 goals

Manchester United beat Arsenal to the 2002-03 Premier League title by five points and Ruud van Nistelrooy beat the Gunners’ Thierry Henry to the Golden Boot by one goal.  The Flying Dutchman is one of five different United players to have won both the Premier League and Golden Boot in the same season.

2003-04 Thierry Henry (Arsenal) – 30 goals

Thierry Henry won his second Golden Boot in 2003-03 and to date remains the only player to have won both this award and the Premier League in the same season on two occasions.  This was also the third time a player had scored 30 or more goals in a 38-game season; something which has only been repeated twice since.  This was the season Arsenal went through the entire Premier League campaign unbeaten.

Alan Shearer finished behind the French striker with 22 goals.  This would be a record fourth and final time that Shearer would be runner-up in the race for the Golden Boot.  This would also be the former-England captain’s last real prolific season before hanging his boots up at the end of the 2005-06 season.

2004-05 Thierry Henry (Arsenal) – 25 goals

Arsenal would lose five games the following season and finish some 12 points behind José Mourinho’s Premier League champions Chelsea.  Thierry Henry’s goals didn’t dry up those as the Frenchman managed to bang in 25 goals and win the Golden Boot for a second successive season.

Crystal Palace’s Andrew Johnson finished runner-up with 21 goals – which included a record 11 penalties in a single season, seven of which he won himself.

2005-06 Thierry Henry (Arsenal) – 27 goals

This was Thierry Henry’s record fourth season as the Premier League Golden Boot winner and would be his final as injury struck ruling him out for half of the following season before a move to Barcelona in 2007.  The 1998 World Cup winner remains only the second player to have won the award in three successive seasons.

Ruudy van Nistelrooy was fully fit and prolific again this season, scoring 21 goals for Manchester United before moving to Real Madrid in the summer.

2006-07 Didier Drogba (Chelsea) – 20 goals

Didier Drogba only needed 20 goals to win the Golden Boot in 2006-07 but Chelsea would finish six points behind champions Manchester United.  The Ivorian striker only bettered his tally during the 2009-10 season when he scored 29 goals and topped the chart once more.

Blackburn Rovers’ Benni McCarthy netted 18 goals following his move from FC Porto at the start of the season, to earn the South African the runner-up spot.

2007-08 Cristiano Ronaldo (Manchester United) – 31 goals

Cristiano Ronaldo obliterated the Premier League in 2007-08 with 31 goals, linking him with a big money move to Real Madrid throughout the season.  Sir Alex Ferguson knew he couldn’t prevent the Portuguese forward from joining the biggest club in the world but was able to hang onto Ronaldo for a further season after he didn’t like how Real Madrid went about their business.

Both Fernando Torres (Liverpool) and Emmanuel Adebayor (Arsenal) were next on the list with 24 goals – the latter scoring 25% of those versus Derby County, becoming the first and only player to date to score hat-tricks in two games versus the same team in the same season.

2008-09 Nicolas Anelka (Chelsea) – 19 goals

This was only the third time that the Premier League Golden Boot winner had scored less than 20 goals in a single season and made Nicolas Anelka the only player to have won the award on his own despite only netting in the teens.

Chelsea would finish third this season, whilst Manchester United won the league with the help of Ronaldo’s 18 goals.

2009-10 Didier Drogba (Chelsea) – 29 goals

Didier Drogba only scored more than a dozen goals in two campaigns but he was on fire as the striker in Carlo Ancelotti’s freescoring Chelsea side that pipped Manchester United to the title by a point.

2009-10 was the first of only two seasons that Wayne Rooney would score more than 20 goals – he would finish runner-up in the Golden Boot campaign on both occasions.

2010-11 Carlos Tevez (Manchester City) & Dimitar Berbatov (Manchester United) – 20 goals each

The third and most recent time the Golden Boot has been shared came in 2010-11 when rivals Manchester City and Manchester United saw their players, Carlos Tevez and Dimitar Berbatov, share the award.

This was Carlos Tevez’s second season at City and Berbatov’s third at Manchester United.  The Red Devils won the league whilst the Citizens finished third and qualified for the Champions League.

2011-12 Robin van Persie (Arsenal) – 30 goals

One of Arsène Wenger’s last great developments was Robin van Persie.  Few had expected the wide man to turn out as great as he did when the French manager turned him into a striker.  Van Persie had scored 18 goals the previous season before playing a rare 38 Premier League games in a single season, topping the charts with 30 goals.

Wayne Rooney would finish runner-up with 27 goals before two became teammates the following season.

2012-13 Robin van Persie (Manchester United) – 26 goals

Following his move from Arsenal to rivals Manchester United in the summer of 2012, Robin van Persie became only the second player after Alan Shearer to win back-to-back Golden Boots with different clubs.  It also made the Dutch striker the ninth and latest player to win both the Premier League and Golden Boot in the same season.

Liverpool’s Luis Suárez would finish second with 23 goals.

2013-14 Luis Suárez (Liverpool) – 31 goals

Luis Suárez became only the third player to score 31 goals in a 38-game Premier League season and did so in fewer games than Alan Shearer and Cristiano Ronaldo, meaning the controversial Uruguayan has the best goals-to-games ratio in Premier League history.

Teammate Daniel Sturridge finished runner-up for the award with 21 goals, meaning this was the first and only time to date that the same team has had the top two scorers in the same season.  Thanks to a Steven Gerrard slip however, Liverpool managed not to win the title.

2014-15 Sergio Agüero (Manchester City) – 26 goals

Sergio Agüero is one of the most-prolific strikers in Premier League history but his fitness has always been his down point.  The Argentine can’t seem to go a single season with a serious injury of some sort.  Therefore, reducing his chances of winning the Golden Boot.  He did win the award in 2014-15 with 26 goals in 33 Premier League appearances for Manchester City.

Tottenham’s Harry Kane had his breakout season by netting 21 goals as his club’s frontman.

2015-16 Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur) – 25 goals

Harry Kane proved he wasn’t a one-season wonder by taking the Golden Boot with 25 goals.  In the process he became the first English player to win the Premier League Golden Boot in 16 years following Kevin Phillips’ efforts at the start of the millennium.

The England international finished one goal ahead of both Sergio Agüero (Manchester City) and Jamie Vardy (Leicester City).

Real Madrid Look a Great Bet at 11/2 to Retain Champions League

No team in the history of the Champions League era has been able to successfully defend their trophy in the competition. Current holders Real Madrid could be able to end that long wait this year as the Spanish giants look in great shape to come out on top in Europe again.

Real won their 11th European Cup/Champions League crown last summer when they defeated their local rivals Atletico Madrid on penalties. The two sides could not be separated after 120 minutes, therefore it took a shootout to determine a winner in Milan where their captain Cristiano Ronaldo scored the winning spot-kick.

The Champions League winners did not need to strengthen last summer. They have not kept hold of all of their big stars – however, they remain a very talented side which includes Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez and Karim Benzema. Unlike many of their rivals in the Champions League, Real have plenty of depth to their squad. Players like Isco, Toni Kroos and Alvaro Morata all provide fantastic cover if any of the regular starters pick up an injury or suspension.

Real Lead The Way In Spain
As well as remaining on track for success in Europe, Zinedine Zidane’s side are also at the top of La Liga at the time of writing. They beat Malaga 2-1 recently to retain the top spot in the standings ahead of Sevilla, Barcelona and Atletico who are also chasing the leaders in a tight pack.

Real will travel to Celta Vigo next up in the Copa del Ray where they are 13/20 with sportsbet.io to win that game at the time of writing. The Madrid club were beaten at the Bernabeu 1-2 in the first-leg of that quarter-final clash, so they have some work to do if they are to remain in that competition.

Holders Handed Kind Last 16 Tie
Despite finishing second in their group before the knockout stages of the Champions League, Real have been handed a favourable draw against Napoli next month in the last 16 of the tournament. The Italian side are third in Serie A and are without Gonzalo Higuain this season as they sold the Argentine to their rivals Juventus in the summer transfer window for an estimated £75.3 million.

Real will play their first leg at the Bernabeu where they can open up a sizeable advantage in the tie ahead of the second fixture at the Stadio San Paolo two weeks later.

The threat to Real’s bid to win back-to-back Champions League titles is likely to come from Barcelona and German champions Bayern Munich. Both of those teams have tough last 16 draws though. Barcelona will need to get past PSG, while Bayern are up against Arsenal for a place in the quarter-final.

As ever in knockout competitions, the winners always need a bit of luck along the way. Real have had that with the last 16 draw and they are more than good enough to take advantage of it by going all the way and lifting the trophy in Cardiff in May to become the first back-to-back winner of the Champions League.

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Betway Promotions Perfect for Premier League Action

With Premier League betting so far this season making it difficult for punters to come out on top, promotions from bookmakers have become even more useful. Betway are certainly at the forefront of such bonuses and enticing offers, with their bonus bet of up to £100 for new customers among the best on the market. Simply deposit anything up to £100 upon registering with Betway, and you will receive an 100% deposit match as a result. With many frustrated by recent results, including Bournemouth’s shock comeback win over Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, and Manchester United’s failure to secure three points at home to the likes of Stoke City and Burnley, getting back in the black through a bonus fbet or bonus is certainly welcome by all users.

So for those looking to take advantage of upcoming matches in the Premier League, Betway’s offer is available to all new customers making a deposit via either a debit or credit card, as well as PayPal. With the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea both expected to secure comfortable victories against Stoke and West Brom respectively this weekend, backing the duo in the Premier League betting at Betway looks almost certain to prove fruitful. Alternatively, for those looking outside of the football market, the likes of American Football, Tennis, Rugby and Boxing all offer attractive encounters over the coming weeks, perfect to make the most of with a Betway promotion.

Betway is undoubtedly at the cutting edge when it comes to sports betting, with their pre-match and in-play football offering over 100 markets available across a single Premier League fixture. Handicaps, draw no bet, both teams to score, first goal scorer and correct score are all available in the Premier League betting odds, with some further promotions available for punters to take advantage of.

The football accumulator assurance means that those who place a win/draw/win five-fold accumulator on any football matches will be refunded up to £25 of their stake if they are let down by just a single game. For football fans who know the agony of a last minute goal going against your team, this is certainly a welcome addition. Away from the football, and for horse racing fans, the Channel 4 horse racing special is certainly one not to miss out on, as if your selection is beaten into second in any live televised race on Channel 4 Racing by a head or less, Betway will refund your stake with a bonus bet up to £25.

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Fifa and Pro Evolution Soccer Go Head to Head Again

The long-running battle for market supremacy between EA Sports and Konami has provided avid football fans with a series of ground-breaking titles that have pushed the boundaries to new levels. A staunch ambition to be one step ahead of their rivals, combined with the integration of next generation graphics, enhanced operating systems and evolving animation capture technology, has led to both football games being more visually appealing and life-like than ever before. It has enabled fans to be closer to the action and feel every kick, tackle or physical collision, with subtle details included across every aspect of the game to create the best football experience on a console or PC.

While computer games can only come so far as simulations for the real-life version that brings people from all over the world together and enables those who feel they can predict the outcome of matches to do through choosing the best odds provided on Bookies.com, Fifa and Pro Evolution Soccer have both come a long way over the years. However, as is always the case with football, there can only be only one winner, and with avid fans often finding it difficult to choose between them, we need to look into the finer details to see which comes out on top.

Capturing the imagination and true passion for the sport of avid football fans requires every detail to be on the money, and although purists may prefer watching the real thing and predicting the outcome through the latest Football Odds, EA Sports’ ability to obtain official licenses for the badge and kits of every team on the game makes Fifa 16 a visual spectacle. With over 650 teams from 30 leagues across the world to choose from, gamers are certainly not spoilt for choice when playing Fifa 16, with the addition of lower leagues in England, Spain, Italy and other major leagues not only branching out to fans who may support Accrington Stanley or Salernitana rather than Manchester United, Barcelona or Juventus, but also create more depth that can be appreciated throughout other game modes. EA’s partnership with Sky Sports has also seen the introduction of the official graphics used during live Premier League matches aired on the television station, while other leagues, such as the Bundesliga, have also received the same treatment to further enhance its visual qualities.

Although Konami have been able to retain their official Champions League license which incorporates the infamous theme tune when players walk out on the pitch, they remain in the shadow on EA Sports by only incorporating official badges and kits for Manchester United in the Premier League, along with every team in Spain, Italy and France. It is this authentic touch which is missing from Pro Evolution Soccer 2016, with the lack of badges and kits, along with the names of several players, managers, stadiums and teams being incorrect being the main disappointment of a game that could be so much more with the official licenses (this can be amended on the PlayStation 4 through file transfers from data created on the PC, but Xbox One gamers unfortunately do not have this option).

The key selling point of any football game is the overall gameplay, with fans now expecting the very best engine that incorporates every aspect of the sport in the best way possible. Capturing the drama and suspense that comes with the real thing is something that EA Sports and Konami manage on an annual basis, and although it does not compare with reading the full match listings on Bookies.com to see the fixtures and potential favourites to watch the unpredictability factor of football play out on television or sat in a stadium, both games certainly earn strong marks for their adaption of the beautiful game. Fifa was by far and away the main leaders in this category up until the last year or so when Konami really stepped up their game with Pro Evolution Soccer 2015 which significantly bridged the gap between the two through an enhanced game engine that recreated all the qualities that have arguably been lost since PES2006, which is still hailed as a classic title. Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 has gone one step further, with enhanced AI and game physics not only allowing gamers to see the unique playing styles of a wide range of players on and off the ball, but also create lovely attacking moves and appreciate the understanding that players have on the pitch as to their surroundings and moving into space.

Konami have not entirely moved away from the arcade aspect of football, but although their latest title certainly offers excellent gameplay that should provide gamers with hours of drama, excitement and tension, there is still a certain lack of fluidity within gaining complete control of a player’s movement, while trying to pull of skill moves is more complex than it should be. Both aspects have been perfected by EA Sports through their innovative animation capture technology using star players such as Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero to create every aspect of dribbling, body movement and skill to ensure gamers can manoeuvre around the pitch in the way they want to. Fifa 16 has thankfully amended the huge error that was made with the dependence on player speed on their previous title, with EA Sports focusing their game around being much more patient in possession and moving the ball around in order to create openings that would not otherwise be possible on 15 whereby one ball to a pacey winger or striker was the golden ticket to success. Although many gamers believe that Fifa 16 has become almost unbeatable at times when playing against the computer, you cannot help but marvel at the quality goals, wonderful goalkeeping saves and overall ability to defend, pass the ball around and attack using innovative features that make the game so realistic.

Another major selling point that could be decisive in which title gamers should buy when looking for a football game is the range of game modes that are provided. Fifa 16 has made significant improvements to its Ultimate Team service that enables gamers to purchase packs and create their very own dream team in order to reach the top against the computer or online opponents. The game has also stuck with the tried and trusted modes of Seasons (single player and Co-Op), Pro Clubs, and Career mode which allows gamers to experience life as a professional footballer or manager. The latter has seen numerous innovative changes, with the introduction of pre-season tournament and an enhanced training system that allows gamers to set up training sessions every five days and either play through them themselves, or simulate to create improvements in player abilities that is reflected when they perform on the pitch. Pro Evolution Soccer 2016 has similarly followed suit by sticking with the game modes that made the title popular again last year, with myClub and Master League undoubtedly the standout features. The latter definitely resonates with their loyal fanbase as one of the most iconic modes in football gaming history, with gamers able to take control of their chosen team and lead them to glory on and off the pitch through training regimes, dealing in the transfer market and scouting for fresh talent that becomes available every year.

Trying to decide between the two games may ultimately come down to personal choice. Those who want the ultimate gaming experience with full licenses and the ability to play with a whole range of teams should side with Fifa 16, while others who prefer a more arcade-version of football and can oversee the lack of licensed badges, names and kits due to the hours of fun that can be had playing Master League should go for Pro Evolution Soccer 2016. It is clear, however, that Konami have managed to significantly bridge the gap between their market rivals and now have a title that offers serious competition, but having played both games, I would say, from personal experience, that Fifa 16 edges it as the game to buy.

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Tips for Betting on the 2016/17 English Premier League

Football betting is more popular than ever. The shock result of the 2015/16 season proved that it’s never a two-horse race and it re-ignited a lot of interest in the sport. For the first time in a long time, people feel the outsiders are worth a bet. The English Premier League is one of the biggest leagues in football with an enormous global popularity. That makes it a great place to put your bets, whether you’re just after a bit of fun, or some serious winnings.

The  Favourites

Even after Leicester City’s amazing win last season, the favourites are still very much the favourites. Bookies are expecting a return to normality to an extent, and the big six are still expected to do well. If you fancy a safe bet, Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United, Liverpool or Tottenham will probably be up there come the end of the season. Chelsea have been favourites from the off, but Liverpool have had a fantastic start to the season, so could be worth a bet.

The  Outsiders

The outsiders, even those coming up from the championship, have been given hope. In previous years, the main goal of any of these clubs was to avoid the drop. Leicester have filled the clubs usually around them with an underdog spirit. A lot of fans are saying “if they can do it, why can’t we?”, some of this optimism is transferring to the clubs, but at the moment, not really to the bookies. Leicester at the start of the season were 26/1 to regain their title, this has steadily dropped since. Nothing is impossible, however. If you fancy taking a punt on an outsider, Everton, Watford, and believe it or not, Burnley have been performing well, however, it’s unlikely they could take this good form right to the top.

The  Relegation  Contenders

Why not have a bet on the drop? This is often easier to predict. Those clubs gaining promotion last year are often ones to watch. In the case of 2016/17 that’s Burnley, Middlesbrough and Hull City. With only Hull out of these currently in the drop zone, who knows? Last year’s strugglers Sunderland aren’t expected to do well and Crystal Palace are struggling for form. If you fancy an outsider for the drop, Aston Villa and Newcastle last year proved that even so called “big clubs” aren’t safe, so look to West Ham.

In  Play  Betting

In play betting gives you the chance to place bets during the game. If you don’t fancy a big bet on the league itself, in play betting is a fun way to add entertainment to the games. Follow the odds and match stats live to make educated decisions on what you expect to happen. You can bet on anything from goal scorers, to the number of corners in the match.

Betting  Apps

Apps are a great way to not only place and cash in your bets, but also to receive real time updates and special offers. People have been using online betting now for a long time, with incredible success. Apps make this even more functional. You can watch a game via a betting app, such as Coral app for Android, change your bets, cash out, make in play bets, all whilst completely informed of live real time information. The beauty of an app, is you can do this on the go.

Betting on the English Premier League has never been more exciting. Anything can happen, with teams vying for position week to week. It’s never been more competitive. The only thing we know for certain is that there are no longer any certainties.

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5 Things To Consider When Joining Sportbooks

It can be tough for players to know what to do when it comes to selecting the right online sportsbook. After all, there are a myriad of sportsbooks to choose from and seemingly all offer a great deal.

We have decided to try and save you a bit of time by selecting our top five things to consider when choosing the right sportsbook for you.

1) License

First and foremost, you should check that the sportsbook is properly licensed to provide the service it is offering. There are a number of laws, regulations and legislations to abide by and a proper license will ensure this.

Checking the license before signing up will make sure you stay within the law and can have fun gambling on markets that you like and have knowledge of.

2) Customer Support

A lot of online sportsbooks pride themselves on providing excellent round-the-clock customer support.

You need to choose one that you know will be on hand to help if you have any problems. For instance, if you deposit money but it doesn’t let you place a bet, you need to know that a customer support team will sort this problem without delay.

3) Bonuses

All online sportsbooks will promote some type of bonus to new players, but don’t be fooled by the attractive higher percentage bonus for one when there may be better bonuses within another site.

Read between the lines and look for a sportsbook that will provide regular bonuses and reward loyalty to its players.

4) Odds

Simply put, this will determine which sportsbook will provide you with the best value for money. Higher or better odds will make a winning bet more profitable, meaning it is better value.

One way of checking for the better odds, before joining, is to compare the same multiple team accumulator bet and see which one pays the most for the same stake.

5) Live Streaming Options

For some people this will be the most important thing to consider when choosing an online sportsbook.

Live football streaming and being able to watch your favourite sports as they happen will be available at a lot of sportsbooks. Most will require a minimum bet though so pay attention to this before signing up.

In Conclusion

It’s a good idea to read customer reviews, looking for details of the five things we have listed. This will enable you to have a better understanding of what each sportsbook provides and help you to decide which one is right for you.

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Klopp To Drop United 6/1

Ladbrokes Bookmaker are offering new punters enhanced odds of 6/1* on Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool beating Manchester United in this weeks Super Sunday Live game on Sky Sport 1 (17 Jan 2016).

Both teams met after being involved in two epic mid-week thrillers. Van Gaal's United drew 3-3 at St James Park whilst Liverpool staged a late comeback (3-3) against top of the table Arsenal to rescue one point at Anfield.

Klopp, speaking to the press before the encounter with United said “For sure, it will be very special for me and my first derby. I was not here when we played against Everton. We’ve played against City, yes, but I know about the difference between City and United. It’s a cool thing and I am looking forward to it.”

However, it's worth nothing that the new Liverpool manager has faced United before in the Champions League semi-final when his Dortmund team beat United home and away over two legs. Mersyside will be celebrating if Klopp can drop United in front of the Kop and you could too if you grab the generous 6/1 on offer from Ladbrokes Bookmaker.

*New customer offer: Liverpool to win 6/1 OR Man Utd to win 7/1. Max £10 with money back as a bonus bet if loses.

Improve Your FA Cup Betting Winning Odds

The FA Cup has always been one of the most popular sporting events with betting fans and this season looks as though it will be no different.

While the tournament is one of world football's most iconic, predicting a winner is no easy feat, with a host of teams from within English football all entering the competition believing they have what it takes to go all the way to lifting the famous trophy at Wembley next May.

As well as those clubs you'd expect to be in contention for one of the season's biggest prizes, recent winners Wigan and Portsmouth have shown that even those teams you might initially not think of when putting together your betting slip are capable upsetting the odds.

With English football's big boys perhaps more focused on the race for the Premier League title or their European campaigns, it has opened the door for those smaller sides to make a run towards Wembley. While Arsenal have won the tournament for two years running, Arsene Wenger's men may have bigger fish to fry this season, challenging for honours both in the league and Europe, the same can be said for the likes of Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea.

So, which clubs should you be thinking of when placing your FA Cup betting selections this season?

West Ham: The three-time winners last came closest to lifting the FA Cup trophy in 2006 when they were beaten in the final by Liverpool on penalties. It's been a disappointing few years since then for the club but that looks to be changing.

Under the guidance of former defender Slaven Bilic, the Hammers are third in the Premier League table at the time of writing and a run in one of the cups could definitely be on the cards this season. With odds as long as 33/1 when this article was produced, they could be outsiders.

Leicester City: Another surprise package this season have been Leicester City. Having disposed of Nigel Pearson and replaced him with former Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri, the Foxes have already upset the odds on a number of occasions this season. Now out of the Capital One Cup, the club will be looking to enjoy a decent run in the FA Cup.

Ranieri will rightly feel he has a good enough squad to have a real go in the tournament this year.

Hull City: Despite being relegated from the Premier League last season, there is a positive feeling around Hull City at the moment. This could be a great chance at making a huge return on your FA Cup wager.

As well as sitting second in the Championship table, Steve Bruce's men recently dumped Leicester City out of the Capital One Cup to reach the quarter-finals.

While securing promotion back into the top tier will be the club's main focus this season, you shouldn't rule out Hull's chances of causing a shock in one of the cup competitions.

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Premier League Top Goalscorer Special

With only 10 days to go until the kick-off of the 2015/16 Premier League season, all eyes are on the special offers from the bookies and this one from Paddy Power Bookmakers is a real gem.

Place a £20 bet on any player in the Premier League Top Goalscorer market and get a £2 bonus bet EVERY TIME he scores during the season.

Yep, you read that correctly. Every time the footballer you back for Top Goal Scorer of the season actually scores a goal you automatically get a £2 bonus bet!

It doesn't matter if you place your bets on your mobile, tablet or online the offer stands just as long as you place £20 on the footballer of your choice and as long as he keeps scoring in the Premier League, you'll keep getting the bonus bets.

Simply put, if you back a player and he scores 10 goals, you've made your money back, more than 10 goals and your in the money and if he actually becomes the Premier Leagues top goal scorer then kaching!

All of your bonus bets will be credited on a weekly basis, by 12pm every Monday and if your player is on a roll and scores a hatrick then don't worry, you will be able to claim a maximum of £10 in bonus bets per week (Monday to Sunday).

Historically, at least three players score over 20 goals in any given season (In 2010/11 only two did) and last season, 24 individual players scored 10 goals or more in the Premier League with Sergio Agüero topping the list on 26 goals for Manchester City.

He is the current favourite on odds of 3/1 to repeat his success so if you put £20 on him you would ultimately end up with £52 worth of bonus bets (based on the 26 goals scored last season) plus winnings of £60 (and your £20 stake back) for a total profit of £112 on your bet!

Diego Costa for Chelsea is second favourite on odds of 11/2 so that roughly translates as £40 in bonus bets (he scored 20 goals last season) plus £110 in winnings if he beats out Aguero this year, totalling £150 plus your stake back.

As bets go, this is definitely one of the best out there at the moment when you consider that Harry Kane is 14/1 and he was the second highest goal scorer last season, one ahead of Costa and only five behind Aguero. Will he be playing for Spurs when the season kicks off, most probably, but whether or not he will still be there by the time the transfer window closes is another matter though by all accounts, he is very happy at Tottenham.

So what are you waiting for? Place your £20 bet on the Top Goal Scorer Market at Paddy Power Bookmakers and make the most of this terrific offer!

Paddy Power £20 Risk Free Bet

Online Bookmaker Paddy Power is giving new customers a £20 risk free bet - simply make your first bet as a new customer of £20 and if it loses, Paddy Power will refund that amount to you in Cash.

Available to new customers only unless otherwise stated; wagering requirements and other terms & conditions apply.

Football Betting Tips: The secret To Success In The Champions League

Do many shock results still happen in football's top competitions? If so, is it worth having a bet on the long odds outsider?

Looking at the latest round of Champions League results (the first leg of the quarter-finals) – the results for the four games were:

Atletico Madrid v Real Madrid: 0-0
Juventus v Monaco: 1-0
Paris St Germain v Fc Barcelona: 1-3
FC Porto v Bayern Munich: 3-1

The standout of the round is clearly FC Porto's excellent result against Pep Guardiola's Bayern Munich, who have been fancied by many as potential winners of the competition.

On paper, betting on such a clear win for the Portuguese team seemed foolish. However, if you did your research pre-game, you would have noted that Porto have a superb record at their Dragao Stadium and were in brilliant form. Also, Bayern Munich were missing several key players through injury, including their main attacking wingers Frank Ribery and Arjen Robben plus Javi Martinez from midfield and wing-back David Alaba.

Despite this, Porto were still outsiders with the bookmakers before the game with best available odds of 69/20. Predicting the correct score before the game could have earned some serious payback with odds of 50/1 in some markets. Even a £10 bet or if you had been following the in-play analysis with bookmakers would have made the lovely return of £500! Obviously this is not an exact science and owes a lot to luck but sometimes it does pay to follow your gut instincts and have a gamble.

The other surprising result was the size of the victory of FC Barcelona away to Paris St-Germain. Whilst a win for the Catalan team was not a surprise given the players at their disposal and great recent form, the size of the victory against an expensively assembled home team was a little unexpected.

Again, a bit of research would have highlighted that PSG were missing key players Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Marco Veratti, while defender David Luiz (the most expensive defender in history) was also a doubt with injury and only came on off the bench.

Some bookies were offering 15/1 on this scoreline, so, as you can see, it is worth being a bit courageous and taking a risk to maximise your profit.