Liverpool’s eye-catching start to the Premier League season has been noticed by the bookies, with the Reds now second-favourites to lift the title next May.
Not many fancied Jurgen Klopp‘s side to mount a genuine title challenge during the summer, with qualifying for the Champions League generally seen as the main aim.
A string of superb results has changed everything, however, with Liverpool overcoming a very difficult start in impressive fashion.
Klopp’s men have picked up 10 points from their opening five games, and while the 2-0 defeat at Burnley sent many supporters into meltdown, the Reds have picked up seven points from trips to Arsenal, Tottenham and Chelsea.
There was also the 4-1 drubbing of current champions Leicester City at Anfield, which further highlighted what a force Liverpool now look.
While nobody should get too carried away just yet – we all know about the Reds’ shortcomings against weaker opposition – the current bookies’ odds show that they are right in the title mix.
Man City’s unstoppable start sees them deservedly tipped as strong favourites to seal a third Premier League crown, with their odds as short as 4/6 currently.
It is Liverpool (5/1) at the front of the chasing pack, though – the fact that they have got through this difficult start in such style is probably the key to this.
They also have no European commitments to worry about, which as their thrilling 2013/14 season showed, can make a huge difference as the months pass and opposition legs tire.
Chelsea (9/1) are the current third-favourites, although their limp showing against Liverpool on Friday suggests there is not too much to fear about Antonio Conte’s team.
Arsenal (12/1) are not too far behind in their customary fourth place, but again, the Gunners look flawed rather than frightening.
Man United (14/1) started the season with three wins on the bounce, but rather delightfully, they have experienced the week from hell.
Successive league defeats to Man City and Watford have seen Jose Mourinho’s side drop from second to fifth-favourites in no time.
Spurs (14/1) are on a par with United, while if you want to take a punt on the unthinkable, Everton are 50/1 to “do a Leicester”.
Everyone will have their opinion of where Liverpool will finish – some will be preparing their title-winning night out, while others will still be ruling out a top-four finish – but it is certainly exciting times.
If they can just rid themselves of the poor performances that keep occurring against the lower-ranked sides, we could be in for a very exciting next eight months or so