bet365 are offering 12 Premier League Goalscorer Match Bets ahead of the new season, and in part one of our series, we break down the first four between Darwin Nunez and Gabriel Jesus, Wilfried Zaha and Philippe Coutinho, Erling Haaland and Mohamed Salah, and Jamie Vardy and Luis Diaz.
It would be foolish to read too much – if anything – into pre-season friendlies, but the Twitter compilations are already being assembled of Darwin Nunez’s struggles – if you can call them that – in a Liverpool shirt so far.
But with an £85m price tag, people expect the world instantly, while perhaps deep down knowing it will take a little bit of time to adapt to Jurgen Klopp’s system – Klopp himself has already felt the need to leap to the Uruguayan’s defence.
But the 23-year-old is sure to cause problems to many a Premier League defence this season, on the back of 26 goals last season with Benfica – including a couple against Liverpool.
Meanwhile Gabriel Jesus is having to adapt to new surroundings, having left Manchester for London.
He’s working with one of his old manager’s disciples in Mikel Arteta, and doesn’t seem to have had the same problems fitting in, scoring three goals in his first two games.
While Arsenal looked potent at times last season, with goals coming from a number of players, they did miss an out-and-out goalscorer, and Jesus may be the perfect fit for the Gunners this season.
Last season was the third time in the last four seasons that Wilfried Zaha reached double figures for Crystal Palace.
No longer under the cautious Roy Hodgson, Zaha notched his career-best tally with 14, and as Crystal Palace’s primary attacking outlet, there’s little reason to think he won’t reach double figures again. In the last five seasons he’s managed an impressive 48 goals from 39 expected goals, and unless regression hits him in a big way, he should be on for another solid haul.
Philippe Coutinho looked mesmeric at times following his move from Barcelona last season, but he, like many of his team mates, fell away towards the end of the season with nothing to play for.
Villa are the better side of the two, but their goals are likely to be more spread around the squad than at Palace, and with Zaha inheriting penalty duties from Luka Milivojevic last season, that may be enough to see him edge out Coutinho.
In the blue corner, the player everyone wants to see: Erling Haaland is set to take on the Premier League, as favourite for PFA Player of the Year and the Premier League Golden Boot.
He’s a big favourite to out-score last season’s Golden Boot winner Mohamed Salah, but he does have question marks around him.
Few would be surprised if Haaland comes and blasts 30 goals (which he’s 9/2 to do), but there’ll be plenty saying ‘I told you so’ if he misses several games through injury and takes a little time to adapt to a very new way of playing. So many of his goals at Dortmund came in transition periods, where he’s able to use his blistering pace to get in behind defences. Anyone fielding a high line against City next season will be asking for trouble.
In the red corner is one of the Premier League’s all-time great goalscorers. Despite being at Anfield for just five years, he’s 20th on the list of the league’s top scorers.
He’s reached 20 in four of his five seasons (and got 19 in the other). His incredible start to last season was stalled by the Africa Cup of Nations, and with no World Cup, he looks good to break 20 goals again.
Jamie Vardy just keeps on going. In the Premier League he’s played under four different managers, with some suggesting he may struggle under a possession-based coach like Brendan Rodgers, but in 105 games under the Northern Irishman, he’s bagged 63 goals.
Even the last two seasons, as he’s reached his mid-30s (he’ll be 35 next January), he’s still scored 15 in back-to-back campaigns.
But time will eventually catch up with Vardy, and with the likes of Patson Daka and Kelechi Iheanacho itching for more game time, Vardy may start to play a more subdued role. Despite his 15 goals, he did miss a substantial portion of the season through injury – making his goal haul more impressive of course, but perhaps a warning of things to come.
Luis Diaz meanwhile couldn’t have got off to a better start at Liverpool. He was so good on the left wing that Sadio Mane was fielded more centrally to accommodate them both.
He’s not quite reaching Mane’s level of 0.5 goals per 90 at 0.38, but to say he’s just got started in the Premier League – and under Jurgen Klopp no less – there’s no reason to think he can’t hit double figures next season.