Man City became the first team in a decade to successfully defend the Premier League trophy when they thrashed Brighton 4-1 on Sunday.
<div><p>It marked the culmination of an astonishing 14-match winning streak and saw them edge Liverpool by a single point in the most gripping title battle in recent memory. They are now odds-on favourites to make it three in a row next season after displaying immense mental strength to see off the Reds’ spirited challenge. The likes of Bet365 and Ladbrokes have priced Pep Guardiola’s men at 8/11 (1.73) for glory next season, while 10Bet is offering a market leading 14/19 (1.74).</p><p>Man City’s triumph spelled heartbreak for Liverpool, who beat Wolves 2-0 at Anfield on the final day to move up to 97 points for the season. That was the third largest points tally in Premier League history and only Man City have ever bettered it. Guardiola’s men secured a record-breaking 100 points last season and they picked up 98 this time around. Liverpool ended up with more points than Arsenal’s Invincibles of 2004, the great Chelsea team of Jose Mourinho’s first reign and every single title-winning side Sir Alex Ferguson built, but still it was not enough to win the league.</p><h2>Can Liverpool end 30 years of hurt?</h2><p>Bet365 has Liverpool as the 3/1 second favourites to win the title next season and that is likely to be a popular choice due to the remarkable progress they made this year. The Reds managed just 75 points in 2017/18, but they spent £170 million on Alisson, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri in the summer and that sparked a major improvement. Virgil Van Dijk was named PFA Player of the Year, forwards Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané shared the Golden Boot with Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and they ended up with a +67 goal difference. If they hold of their big stars and continue on this upward curve, they could well prevent Man City making it three in a row.</p><p>Spurs are next in the 2019/20 betting at 14/1, while Man Utd are 18/1, Chelsea are 20/1 and Arsenal are as long as 30/1 with Betfair. The Gunners lost four of their last seven games of the campaign and missed out on a top four spot by a single point. They have made some progress under new manager Unai Emery, but they remain defensively frail and they need serious reinforcements. Chelsea have endured another difficult campaign and they are likely to be hampered by a transfer ban, while star player Eden Hazard wants out.</p><h2>Should Ole still be at the wheel?</h2><p>Man Utd closed a torrid season with a shocking 2-0 defeat at the hands of Cardiff, and the board may regret installing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as permanent manager. Jose Mourinho, sacked after a disastrous run of form mid-season, may allow himself a wry smile. Victory was not enough to save Cardiff, who were already relegated along with Fulham and Huddersfield. Sheffield Utd and Norwich have been promoted and they are both odds-on to go straight back down to the Championship, while Burnley and Brighton are both 5/2 with Betway to go down next season.</p><p>Only a handful of teams will be happy with how the 2018/19 campaign unfolded. Man City fans will obviously be delighted. Wolves supporters should also be ecstatic after the newly promoted club finished seventh, which should be enough to see them play in Europe next season. Liverpool can be pleased with their performances and their points haul, but bitterly disappointed that the 29-year wait for a league title continues. Brighton fans will be relieved to beat relegation, but worried by performances in the second half of the season. All other fans will be looking back with regret after a topsy-turvy campaign, and it will be fascinating to see how the summer transfer window unfolds. Expect the odds to shift all over the place and we will keep you updated throughout.</p></div>