With only 10 rounds of English Premier League still to be played it's a good time to take a closer look who have the biggest chances of winning the trophy this season.
According to Jose Mourinho Manchester City is the hot favorite but it's his Chelsea leading the table at the moment while Liverpool and Arsenal are between the duo. Bookies don't share the Portuguese coach opinion and see Chelsea as the main candidate with Citizens following closely in their ranks while Liverpool and Arsenal not having big backing in prices.
Let's take a look at the table and fixture list of top 4 teams to see who is the real favorite here.
Chelsea lead the ranks in the table with 4 points advantage over Liverpool and Arsenal but 4th placed Manchester is only 6 points behind with two games in hand. So everything still very much opened here.
The Blues are leading the table and bookmakers ranks. However things won't be easy for Mourinho men as they have a difficult schedule ahead of them. Ignoring the Champions League clash against Galatasaray they still need to face Tottenham, Arsenal and Liverpool in the Premier League.
Positively only the Liverpool game will be played away from home while they will host Spurs and Gunners at Stamford Bridge. What is more their last two games of the season look quite easy as they will face Norwich City and Cardiff City. That means if the title is going to be decided in the last two rounds the Blues will be in comfortable situation.
Another positive aspect for Mourinho is the fact he has no real injury worries with only Marco van Ginkel out from his squad.
Even though they are currently 4th Manchester City will be the most serious title contender after Chelsea. Manuel Pellegrini already got his first trophy winning the Capital One Cup final against Sunderland last week and will surely try to get more.
This weekend they're also in the cup action in FA Cup and that means they will have 3 games played less than their main rivals.
From the big teams they are still scheduled to play against Manchester United, Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton. Especially the Manchester derby in two weeks time can be crucial for their title aspirations. Obviously United are not the same team this season but they will do all they can to stop their local rivals at Old Trafford. What is more all other games mentioned above will be played away from home.
Citizens have a long bench and Pellegrini can rotate his squad but the game in Champions League (probably just one against Barca) and those in domestic cups (should qualify for next round against Wigan in the FA Cup) on top of postponed league ones can really cost them towards the end of season.
For now they are not worried about injuries as only Jovetic and Nastasic are out but coming back to health shortly.
Brendan Rodgers is doing a great job at Liverpool this season. With the Suarez – Sturridge duo in good form they can really challenge for title and are still there able to make a big surprise.
Their next game against Manchester United at Old Trafford can be decisive here as if they lose points there it will be extremely difficult to get back to play. However if they win against David Moyes men they will be in comfortable situation hosting Tottenham, Manchester City and Chelsea at Anfield Road with big chances to take points away from them.
The Gunners are set to have a relatively easy end of this season without a key opponent in their last 5 games. However before we come to this point they still need to face Tottenham, Chelsea, Everton and Manchester City away from home.
It's going to be extremely hard for them to get enough points from those games to stay in the title battle. And on top of that Arsene Wenge
r still needs to face his injury problems with Diaby, Monreal, Walcott, Wilshere, Ramsey and Kallstrom all out for coming days and weeks.
It all looks that bookies are right in their estimations. Chelsea look to be the strongest title candidate. Their fixture list is not as difficult and long as the one of Manchester City. They don't have real injury worries and Mourinho is the most experienced coach when it comes to decisive moments of title campaign.
The only “problem” they might have is their potential Champions League qualification. But even with this on mind they still have less games to play this season than Citizens.
Liverpool can still be the surprising candidate especially if they manage to get 3 points from their last difficult away trip this season – Old Trafford visit. If they do that it will definitely be worth to back them to win the league with a smaller bet.