A quick look at the betting board for Matchweek 2 of the Premier League season and one price will jump out at you right away. Despite showing well in a 2-0 upset of Aston Villa in Week 1, Bournemouth are +3500 underdogs (FanDuel) away to Manchester City on Saturday morning (10 a.m. ET).
According to implied win probability, bookmakers are giving the Cherries a 2.8% chance of pulling the upset, or roughly the same odds as the Los Angeles Kings have to win the 2022/23 Stanley Cup.
As startling as it is to see 35/1 odds for a Premier League match, huge underdogs are nothing new in the EPL. In fact, per Action Labs, this will be the 62nd game since 2012 that has featured an underdog of +2000 or longer. And wouldn’t you know, it’s actually been a profitable endeavor to bet the pooch in this spot. Even though these enormous dogs have only won on three occasions, if you’d have bet $100 on every one of them you’d have netted $761 for a 12.5% ROI.
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What’s more is that all three upsets came in the last three years and they all took place against Manchester City. Wolverhampton Wanderers took down the Cityzens as a +2107 underdog in 2019, Norwich City pulled it off at +2454 that same season and then last season Crystal Palace vanquished Pep Guardiola’s City as a +2000 longshot.
Nothing on paper will tell you that Bournemouth are worth a shout against City. The Cityzens are the best team in the world and have only strengthened their ranks during the summer thanks to the arrival of superstar Erling Haaland, but that doesn’t mean there’s no reason to consider a bet on Bournemouth considering the odds.
If you are interested in a punt on the Cherries, you’re just banking on things to go haywire, which is certainly possible. Like any single game in any sport, a 90-minute match of soccer can have a ton of variance. Maybe someone on Manchester City picks up an early red card or Bournemouth earns a penalty. Maybe City are just not at the races and the Cherries nab a goal off a corner or a direct kick.
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None of that is likely to happen, though, and the most probable outcome of this match is a blowout win for City, who could end up as a 3-goal favorite by the time we kick off on Saturday. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth a shot. After all, betting is supposed to be fun and add to the experience of watching a game. And what’s more fun than rooting on a 35/1 underdog as they park the bus against the best team in the world for 90 minutes?