Football is back. Howtobet4free shows you how to make the most of your bets this season.
The longest three months of the year is finally over. The football season starts again this week with the Championship kicking off with two fixtures on Friday night; as Sunderland take on Nottingham Forrest and Derby County face Millwall. Howtobet4free takes a look at the season ahead, and some of the enticing bets that one of football's most exciting leagues can offer.
The teams that were relegated from the Premier League last season will be strong favourites to return to the top flight, and with Middlesbrough 2/1 with Sky Bet, clearly the bookies choices to gain automatic promotion, there are potentially only two further places up for grabs. The bookies don't hold out too much hope for their fellow demoted sides however. Both Hull, 6/1 with Bet Victor and Sunderland 6/1 with Sky Bet, are much longer odds to gain promotion, giving a huge indicator, that the campaign in the Championship is set to be ultra-competitive this time around.
Can the experience of John Terry help guide Aston Villa back into the Premier League?
With Aston Villa boasting top flight players such as John Terry, the side are looking like being a lot more competitive this season, and are second favourites to gain promotion at 9/4 with William Hill. Alongside Middlesbrough and last season's play-off semi finalists Fulham, who are 3/1 with Unibet, it looks like the smart money is on these three sides to gain promotion.
There are however many teams within the league who will fancy a shot at gaining promotion this time around. The appearance of Huddersfield in the top flight, should give any of them a huge boost ahead of the season. Other possible contenders include Leeds United 6/1 with Bet Victor, who under new manager, Thomas Christiansen, will be hopeful of improving on last season's position of finishing just outside the play-offs. Howtobet4free's outside chance looks promising, with last season's play-off semi-finalists Reading 8/1 with Bet Victor to gain promotion.
One of the most lucrative bets at the start of the season is who will win the play-offs. This can allow for longer odds, and give the punter a bigger win! You would have been hard pressed to find many who would have voted Huddersfield winning last season's rollercoaster though. This season's candidates are the same as those looking to get promotion, but by betting on the team that will win the play-offs, allows a much higher pay out. Reading for instance are 18/1 to win the play–offs, with Sky Bet, alongside last year's semi-finalists Fulham, who are 10/1 with Sky Bet.
Can Lee Johnson prevent his Bristol City side from avoiding the drop again this season?
At the other end of the table, a familiar story looks like developing. Bolton, who spent last season in League One, are second favourites to return at 2/1 with Paddy Power, with Burton Albion 7/4 with Bet Victor, the bookies leading candidates to face the dreaded drop, with Bolton's fellow promoted side Millwall, also looking like enduring a tough season, with the London club 14/5 with Unibet to be relegated. Barnsley are 7/4 with Ladbrokes, but Howtobet4free's choice is Bristol City, with the side looking like a team who look like facing a monumental challenge to keep their Championship status. They only finished 3 points above the relegation places last season, they are 8/1 with Bet Victor to be relegated, which looks a tempting prospect.
Other bets to keep the betting punter happy include, top goalscorer, and this year's looks wide open. There are some quality strikers in the second tier this year, and they are at good teams. Jonathan Kodja may have had a quiet season last campaign, but he is a sublime finisher on his day, and with Steve Bruce masterminding a top-notch side, he looks a likely candidate to finish the season as the league's leading hitman at 9/1 with Betfred.
Britt Assombalonga's pace and deadly finishing, will be vital for his new side's Middlesbrough chances of finishing top of the pile, and for him to top the scoring charts, combined with Middlesbrough to win the division, gives a very tempting 70/1 with Bet365, and is Howtobet4free's go to bet for the season.
Will the £15 million paid to bring Britt Assombalonga to Middlesbrough from Nottingham Forrest, prove to be good business?
Unsure how to build an accumulator, or even confused by some of our betting terminology? No problem, simply use Howtobet4free's accumulator calculator and betting guides to maximize your fun and increase your potential winnings.