Pandora Hughes brings us the latest futures betting picks on the 2021/22 La Liga season.
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La Liga 2021/22 Betting Predictions
After a remarkable campaign in which perennial nearly-club Atletico Madrid scooped the league title in 2020/21, old rivals Real Madrid and Barcelona will be laser-focused on domestic supremacy in 2021/22, but both have significant problems to overcome.
Who Do Bettors Favor for the 2021/22 La Liga title?
There’s an unusual look to the betting for La Liga this season that has given bettors plenty to think about. The league winners market is usually dominated by Real and Barcelona, but the impressive success of Atletico has shifted the thinking of bookmakers and that is reflected in the odds.
Real are edging favouritism for the title, but only narrowly from Atletico, while Barcelona are close behind. There is even some support for Sevilla, available at less than double-figure odds in all of the main La Liga title futures markets.
Which Team will win La Liga in 2021/22?
The Spanish league dominance of Real and Barcelona has occasionally been shaken off, though rarely this century. Valencia won two league titles, in 2002 and 2004, but it was another decade before La Liga had a different winner when Atletico won it in 2013/14. But no challenger has been able to retain their title. This time around, things could be different.
Diego Simeone’s side has been consistently among the top four and usually the main challengers to the big two for many seasons, but while their defensive resilience and organization have been remarkable, they have usually lacked the firepower to achieve ultimate glory. That changed last season, with the arrival of Luis Suarez, and having retained the core of their squad, Atletico have an excellent chance of retaining their league title.
Those chances have been boosted by the ongoing turmoil at Barcelona and the upheaval at Real. Lionel Messi’s brilliance had helped the Catalan giants to paper over the cracks in recent seasons and in his absence, they will need to somehow recreate his prolific attacking influence, while improving a leaky defence, and all against the backdrop of financial chaos.
Real’s prospects are a little brighter, but new manager Carlo Ancelotti has plenty of work on his hands in rebuilding a defence missing Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane, and goalscoring will once again be an issue, with Karim Benzema pretty much carrying the team offensively. In summary, Atletico may never get a better chance to record consecutive titles.
Which Team is a Good Wager to make the La Liga Top Four?
With the big three almost certain to finish in the top four, that leaves just one place up for grabs, and the tussle for the final Champions League spot is likely to be fierce.
Sevilla are in a prime position to finish as the best of the rest but much could depend on whether they are able to retain star centre-half Jules Kounde, who is being pursued by the European Champions Chelsea. In his absence, the lack of transfer business this summer could leave them vulnerable.
Europa League champions Villarreal are the most obvious challengers, but although they will look back on the 2020/21 season as a huge success, they slipped a little in the league standings and they still appear to lack depth in their squad. Real Sociedad have retained their young stars and will be hoping for further improvement, while Real Betis will once again be an offensive threat, but at slightly bigger odds, Celta Vigo look interesting. They finished last season strongly, playing intense attacking football under Chacho Coudet and if they can resolve their occasional defensive frailty, they could be a good outside wager.
Who will win the La Liga Golden Boot?
The departure of Messi has made the battle for the Golden Boot far more interesting, and this year’s competition appears to be between three veterans.
Sergio Aguero’s arrival at Barcelona is an eye-catching switch, but Aguero’s playing style means he won’t be able to monopolize goal-scoring chances in the same way that Messi managed, and his injury record is a concern. So this fight looks like a race between Luis Suarez and Karim Benzema, with the Real striker possibly having the edge, given that he finished ahead of Suarez in the goal-scoring charts last season.
Which Teams will be Relegated from La Liga?
At the bottom of the table, two of the newly promoted sides look to have realistic chances of staying in the top flight this season. Espanyol were impressive at the back and upfront last season and have retained their main players, so have realistic chances of avoiding the drop, along with Mallorca, who have started brightly.
That could mean a long tough season for Elche. They survived last season, but only just and they look distinctly vulnerable this time around. Cadiz could also find life tough, as their mid-table finish, last season was better than their overall performances merited. Getafe could also get sucked into a relegation struggle, while Levante, who finished the 2020/21 campaign badly, look another interesting outside bet for the drop. And if you’re looking for a contender at bigger soccer odds, Valencia’s ongoing financial problems and the volatility of their performances in recent seasons could make them an interesting choice in this market.
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