Tue, Oct 4, 12:26pm by Senior Writer
Bookmakers expect this year’s A-League season may end up being a battle of Melbourne, with Victory now the clear favourites to win the championship, ahead of cross-town rivals Melbourne City.
Victory have had a strong pre-season, progressing through to the final four of the FFA Cup, and lobbing a couple of key singings including Marco Rojas and James Troisi, to now be $5 to win the A-League Grand Final.
The puts them clear of City, who have captured all the headlines with the off-season signing of Tim Cahill to play alongside arguably the league’s most damaging player in Uruguayan Bruno Fornaroli.
City are now $6 equal second favourites for the championship, level with Perth Glory, who were the favourites around a month back.
Sydney FC are $6.50, while Brisbane Roar, who have secured former Socceroo Brett Holman, are next in the betting at $8. Western Sydney Wanderers are $9, while defending champions Adelaide United are $10.
Victory are $3.30 to win the FFA Cup, with the semi-finals to be played the week after their Week 2 Derby against City, making for two Derbies in the space of a few days. City are $3.50, while Sydney FC are favourite for that competition at $2 on the basis that they play a non A-League, Canberra Olympic ($76) in their semi-final.
In terms of the premiership, which is the team which is top of the table at the end of the regular season, Victory are $4.33, City $5.50, the Glory $5.50 and Sydney FC $6. Adelaide, who stole top spot with a win in the last game of the season in 2015-16, are $13 to go back to back.
Fornaroli, who scored a record 23 goals last campaign, is $5 favourite to win another A-League Golden Boot, with Victory’s Besart Berisha a $6.50 second pick and Jamie McLaren of Brisbane, who scored 18 goals last season, third favourite at $8.50.
The season’s wooden spoon is expected to be fought out between the Central Coast Mariners and the Newcastle Jets, who have both replaced their coaches in the pre-season. Newcastle, now led by Mark Jones after parting ways with Scott Miller in September, are $3 second pick.
The Mariners, who propped up the table last season, are $2.30 favourites to finish last again. They replaced Tony Walmsley with former Socceroo Paul Okon.
Suggested Bet: Victory to win the Championship at $5
Sportsbet Full A-League Markets:
Australian A-League Champion 2016-2017
Melbourne Victory $5.00
Melbourne City $6.00
Perth Glory $6.00
Sydney FC $6.50
Brisbane Roar $8.00
Western Sydney Wanderers $9.00
Adelaide United $10.00
Wellington Phoenix $13.00
Newcastle Jets $26.00
Central Coast Mariners $34.00
Australian A-League 2016-2017 Minor Premiership
Melbourne Victory $4.33
Melbourne City $5.50
Perth Glory $5.50
Sydney FC $6.00
Brisbane Roar $7.00
Western Sydney Wanderers $8.50
Adelaide United $13.00
Wellington Phoenix $15.00
Newcastle Jets $34.00
Central Coast Mariners $41.00
Australian A-League 2016-2017 Top Goalscorer
B Fornaroli (MC) $5.00
B Berisha (MV) $6.50
J Maclaren (BR) $8.50
A Keogh (PG) $12.00
Bobo (SFC) $12.00
A Taggart (PG) $13.00
T Cahill (MC) $15.00
S Guardiola (AU) $21.00
A Kokko (NJ) $21.00
K Bulut (WSW) $21.00
Henrique (AU) $26.00
Others: $34 or better
Australian A-League 2016-2017 Wooden Spoon
Central Coast Mariners $2.30
Newcastle Jets $3.00
Wellington Phoenix $7.00
Adelaide United $11.00
Western Sydney Wanderers $15.00
Brisbane Roar $21.00
Sydney FC $26.00
Melbourne City $34.00
Perth Glory $34.00
Melbourne Victory $51.00
A-League Week 1
Brisbane Roar v Melbourne Victory
Brisbane Roar $2.40
Melbourne Victory $2.75
Wellington Phoenix v Melbourne City
Wellington Phoenix $3.00
Melbourne City $2.20
Western Sydney Wanderers v Sydney FC
Western Sydney Wanderers $2.30
Sydney FC $2.90
Perth Glory v Central Coast Mariners
Perth Glory $1.50
Central Coast Mariners $6.00
Newcastle Jets v Adelaide United
Newcastle Jets $3.40
Adelaide United $2.00
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