More than any other major professional sports league, the English Premier League is a bit bound by the discrepancy between its haves and have-nots. The so-called “Big Six” teams of the Premiership -- the three big London clubs, the two Manchester squads and Liverpool — run payrolls and transfer budgets that are miles ahead of the other 14 clubs in the division. As a result, those big clubs have won 23 of 25 league championships since the Premier League was formed in 1992.
But big doesn’t always guarantee quality returns on the soccer pitch. So far this season Arsenal, Tottenham, and Liverpool are Big Six teams that have had a few struggles here and there. Meanwhile, a quick glance at the league table shows a plucky Watford side sitting fourth and the newly promoted Huddersfield Town tucked away neatly in at sixth. When the UNU EPL Swarm makes its weekly picks, the participants have to work out whether these surprising early season performances reflect the true performance levels of teams or not.
The EPL Swarm’s pick of the week is Man United at home over Everton. The match involves two sides coming off terribly disappointing games last week. Everton were run off the field last week at home against Tottenham, while Man United sputtered to a draw on the road at Stoke. In United’s favor, they seemed to get things righted on Wednesday when they defeated Basel in their Champions League opener. Perhaps mindful of that performance, the replay below shows the swarm picking the Red Devils by a two-goal spread, with both high Brainpower and a hypothetical bet confidence.
The most-watched game of the week will be the London Derby rivalry match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. The swarm picked Chelsea with only moderate confidence. The replay below shows that our swarm was very split on the degree to which the Blues would handle Arsenal, only breaking late for a 2-goals margin. That divergent early pull on the goal spread, combined with a middling confidence in a hypothetical bet situates this game well below the matches in the top tier of our chart this week.
Every week, researchers at Unanimous AI gather a Swarm of EPL fans to predict all of the weekend's action. Want to join the Swarm, or just have the picks delivered to your inbox? Drop me a line...