The chase to get into the English Premier League is exceptionally close.
Fulham is the overwhelming favorite to win the English League Championship as it sits on 83 points and 10 points ahead of Bournemouth in second. But Bournemouth is eight points ahead of Sheffield United in sixth and the teams from fifth through 11th are separated by just six points.
That parity is ripe for some betting fun. And some profits if you pick the right teams. But that’s easier said than done.
If you’re unfamiliar with the promotion process from the Championship, the top two teams make the Premier League automatically. Teams Nos. 3-6 are seeded into a four-team playoff with the winners of No. 3 vs. No. 6 and No. 4 vs. No. 5 playing each other in a winner-take-all game for the final promotion spot. The three teams that qualify for promotion then take the place of the bottom three Premier League teams in the next season.
Fulham is at -10000 to win the league at BetMGM, thanks to that 10-point lead while Bournemouth is at +1800. And you can’t even bet Fulham to be one of the three teams promoted to the EPL because of that big lead. But there are a staggering 10 teams still on the board for those final two promotion spots, thanks to how close everyone is behind the Cottagers. Here’s a look at those odds heading into the final few weeks of the season.
1. Fulham, 83 points
2. Bournemouth, 73
3. Huddersfield Town, 69
4. Nottingham Forest, 67
5. Luton Town, 65
6. Sheffield United, 65
7. Blackburn Rovers, 63
8. Middlesbrough, 62
9. Milwall, 61
10. Coventry City, 59
11. Queens Park Rangers, 59
12. West Bromwich Albion, 57
13. Preston North End, 57
14. Swansea City, 57
15. Stoke City, 55
16. Blackpool, 53
17. Cardiff City, 49
18. Birmingham City, 45
19. Bristol City, 45
20. Hull City, 44
21. Reading, 37
22. Barnsley, 29
23. Derby County, 28
24. Peterborough, 28
2. Bournemouth, 73 points (7 games left)
If Bournemouth gets points vs. Fulham next Saturday then it will be near impossible for it not to finish second and get the other guaranteed promotion spot.
3. Huddersfield Town, 69 points (5 games left)
Huddersfield’s odds are relatively high despite being third because it has just five games left and Nottingham Forest is in prime position to snag third.
4. Nottingham Forest, 67 points (7 games left)
Forest could get Bournemouth in the penultimate game of the season after Bournemouth has clinched the second spot in the standings. That could be great news for the chase for third.
5. Luton Town, 65 points (5 games left)
A home loss on Friday to Forest could drop Luton outside the top six. Points are imperative this week.
6. Sheffield United, 65 points (5 games left)
Sheffield has such low odds to get promoted, thanks to its weak run-in. Yeah, Fulham is on the schedule but that’s the last game of the season and the Cottagers may be resting players at that point. None of Sheffield’s other four opponents is in the top 10.
7. Blackburn Rovers, 63 points (5 games left)
Blackburn also has a pretty manageable run to the finish. Four wins and a tie against Bournemouth could be good enough to make the playoff.
8. Middlesbrough, 62 points (6 games left)
That game in hand is juicing Middlesbrough’s odds. It helps that the final three games of April are against teams near the bottom of the table too.
9. Milwall, 61 points (5 games left)
Will Bournemouth have anything to play for on the final game of the season? Will Milwall? It needs to take advantage of its four remaining games in April.
10. Coventry City, 59 points (5 games left)
Coventry isn’t on the board, likely because of games against Bournemouth, West From and Huddersfield this month. Some upsets could put it in the mix.
11. Queens Park Rangers, 59 points (5 games left)
If QPR can get six points against Huddersfield and Sheffield United then it has an outside chance at the top six. But it’s a slim one.
12. West Bromwich Albion, 57 points (5 games left)
West Brom’s only game against a top-eight team comes against Forest and has three games against teams in the bottom eight of the standings.