Premier League odds: Best bets to finish top 4
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We are a little over a week away from the triumphant return of the Premier League following a three-month pandemic-induced hiatus.

With 92 matches set to be played over the next 40 days with countless futures markets available, the next six weeks are going to be a gambler's paradise.

Among those markets is the top-four race, which remains wide-open heading into the final stretch. Liverpool and Manchester City are virtual locks to finish in the Champions League places, but seven other clubs have a realistic shot of joining them in the top four of the Premier League table.

POS. CLUB PTS GD MP
1. Liverpool 82 +45 29
2. Manchester City 57 +37 28
3. Leicester City 53 +30 29
4. Cheslea 48 +12 29
5. Manchester United 45 +14 29
6. Wolverhampton 43 +7 29
7. Sheffield United 43 +5 28
8. Tottenham 41 +7 29
9. Arsenal 40 +4 28

POS. - position; PTS - points; GD - goal difference; MP - matches played

And here are the odds for the top-four market.

CLUB TOP FOUR ODDS NOT TOP FOUR ODDS
Leicester City -600 +400
Chelsea -150 +120
Manchester United +175 -225
Wolverhampton +700 -900
Tottenham +1200 -2500
Sheffield United +1400 -3300
Arsenal +2000 -6600

Leicester have enjoyed an excellent first full season under manager Brendan Rodgers and have a stranglehold on a top-four finish, but it will be crucial for them to come out of the break strong.

They need to claim as many points as possible from their first four matches as their schedule gets much trickier from there on out, closing out the campaign with away matches against Arsenal, Bournemouth, and Tottenham, as well as home dates with Sheffield United and Manchester United.

The Foxes have fared quite well against those clubs this season, so barring an unprecedented collapse, a top-four finish should be close to a sure thing for Rodgers' club.

Chelsea are currently holding down fourth place and it's hard to look past them for the final spot in the top four, despite little value at -150. The Blues were hampered a bit by their Champions League participation, losing three and drawing one match following midweek European fixtures.

Upon the return of the Premier League season, Frank Lampard's side can focus solely on the league, and with a relatively friendly fixture list - four of their final nine matches are against bottom-six clubs - the Blues will be a tough side to catch.

That will leave little margin for error for Manchester United, who have three points to make up on the east London club. The Red Devils hit their stride after going 11 matches unbeaten - eight wins, three draws - before the season was suspended.

If the club can pick up where they left off there's a chance they can make up the ground, with six of their remaining nine matches coming against clubs in the bottom half of the table. Their first game back is a trip to Tottenham, which will be a true test as to whether Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side are to be taken seriously as a top-four threat. I'm not big on the United manager and there are too many holes in the club for me to be interested here at anything shorter than 2-1.

Wolves are interesting though, and generously priced at 7-1. Their Europa League participation hindered the start to their season after going winless through their first six Premier League matches, but they've been sharp since. They're a joy to watch under Nuno Espirito Santo and their remaining fixture list isn't particularly off-putting. Trips to Sheffield United and Chelsea are their toughest tests, but they otherwise should be favored in all of their remaining matches as it's entirely conceivable they jump ahead of United and within reach of Chelsea, setting up a massive showdown at Stamford Bridge on the final day of the season.

The other club that stands out is Tottenham, who will have Harry Kane back from injury, which should be enough to lure bettors into taking those long odds. I'm not one that will be buying in, though.

It will take Kane time to regain his sharpness in front of goal, having not stepped onto a football pitch in close to six months. Spurs will need to be clinical over the remaining matches to make up the ground they need, and it's hard to imagine them being able to squeeze nine matches out of Kane in six weeks given his lengthy layoff.

Best bets: Chelsea -150, Wolves +700

Alex Moretto is a sports betting writer for theScore. A journalism graduate from Guelph-Humber University, he has worked in sports media for over a decade. He will bet on anything from the Super Bowl to amateur soccer, is too impatient for futures, and will never trust a kicker. Find him on Twitter @alexjmoretto.

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Premier League odds: Best bets to finish top 4
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