Premier League Picks – Matchday 1


The 2023-24 English Premier League season kicks off this Friday, August 11, with newly-promoted Burnley hosting defending champion Manchester City in the curtain-raiser. 

Accordingly, I have scoured the bookies’ odds to find the best Premier League picks for Matchday 1. With all 20 teams in action this weekend, there is no shortage of Premier League betting opportunities on offer. 

In addition to sharing my recommended Matchday 1 Premier League picks, I will break down the fixture list and share my predictions for several standout games. First, let’s go over a quick recap of last season. 

What Happened in the Premier League Last Season?

Despite the best efforts of Arsenal, Manchester City clinched a third successive Premier League crown last season. The unstoppable Erling Haaland broke all kinds of records while firing City to the title, scoring an outrageous 36 goals in 35 games. 

Not only have Pep Guardiola’s men won each of the last three Premier League titles, but they have also won five of the previous six. As a result, Man City is the bookies’ favorite to lift the trophy once again this season. 

Liverpool and Chelsea both missed out on a top-four finish, with the Blues finishing all the way down in 12th place. Manchester United and Newcastle United joined Man City and Arsenal in the top four, while Brighton and Aston Villa also secured European soccer. 

At the bottom end of the table, Southampton, Leeds United and Leicester City were relegated. Moving in the opposite direction, Burnley, Sheffield United and Luton Town gained promotion from the Championship.

Matchday 1 Premier League Fixtures and Odds

Before you think about locking in your Premier League picks for Matchday 1, be sure to analyze the fixtures. With 10 games on the schedule, there is plenty of betting value to take advantage of. 

To make life easier for you, I have listed all the fixtures below, along with the moneyline odds for each team. Burnley and Man City get the action underway on Friday, August 11, before Man Utd and Wolves wrap up Matchday 1 on Monday, August 14. 

  • Burnley (+740) vs. Manchester City (-333) 
  • Arsenal (-588) vs. Nottingham Forest (+1200) 
  • Bournemouth (+160) vs. West Ham United (+150) 
  • Brighton & Hove Albion (-333) vs. Luton Town (+740) 
  • Everton (+118) vs. Fulham (+210) 
  • Sheffield United (+195) vs. Crystal Palace (+135) 
  • Newcastle United (-135) vs. Aston Villa (+320) 
  • Chelsea (+175) vs. Liverpool (+132) 
  • Brentford (+170) vs. Tottenham Hotspur (+139) 
  • Manchester United (-313) vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers (+700)

As you can see, Man City, Arsenal, Brighton, Newcastle and Man Utd are the clear Matchday 1 favorites. The lowest moneyline price belongs to the Gunners, who welcome Nottingham Forest to the Emirates Stadium in Saturday’s early kick-off. 

In terms of quality, Chelsea vs. Liverpool is arguably the standout clash of the round. The Blues have continued their spending spree this summer, while the Reds have also strengthened their squad with several high-profile arrivals. 

Without further ado, it’s time to provide my Matchday 1 Premier League picks.

Top Premier League Picks for Matchday 1

Following a three-month offseason, it’s finally time to place your Premier League picks once again. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited about betting on the EPL again after three months without any action! 

Of course, the Women’s World Cup has kept soccer fans entertained in recent weeks, while the MLS season has continued to deliver action. Still, there is nothing quite like watching – and betting on – the greatest domestic league on the planet. 

Anyway, that’s enough rambling from me about my love for the EPL. Here are my recommended Matchday 1 Premier League picks and predictions. 

Arsenal vs. Nottingham Forest Prediction

It’s fair to say that Arsenal could not have wished for a better fixture to kick off the 2023-24 campaign. Last season, the Gunners finished second in the table – five points shy of Man City and 46 points clear of Nottingham Forest. 

We all know that Arsenal came agonizingly close to winning the title last season, but not everyone is aware of Forest’s horrible away record. In fact, the Tricky Trees posted the worst away record in the EPL last term, winning just one of their 19 road games. 

It is also worth noting that Forest allowed 44 away goals last season, conceding at a rate of 2.32 goals per game on the road. Since the Gunners averaged 2.79 goals per game on home soil in 2022-23, I’m backing them to score over 2.5 goals on Saturday. 

Best Bet: Arsenal Over 2.5 Goals (-133) 

Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Luton Town Prediction 

Like Arsenal, Brighton & Hove Albion has a very favorable home fixture on the opening weekend of the new campaign. The Seagulls host Luton Town on Saturday, with the Hatters returning to top-flight action for the first time since 1992 following promotion via the playoffs. 

After Roberto De Zerbi replaced Graham Potter in the Amex dugout, Brighton became one of the Premier League’s best attacking teams. Indeed, only Man City and Arsenal generated a higher xG per 90 than Brighton in 2022-23. 

The Seagulls are priced at 333 to defeat the Hatters, who are priced at +740 to claim all three points at the Amex. With that in mind, I recommend exploring the goal markets and handicaps in order to find the best value. 


Newcastle United vs. Aston Villa Prediction

Newcastle United and Aston Villa were two of the surprise packages of the 2022-23 Premier League campaign. While Newcastle secured Champions League soccer by finishing fourth, Villa escaped relegation trouble to snatch a Europa Conference League berth. 

Consequently, Eddie Howe and Unai Emery have established themselves among the best coaches in the division. For that reason, Saturday’s showdown at St. James’ Park is destined to be a close-fought battle between two well-drilled teams. 

Newcastle is the bookies’ favorite at -135, but the Villains will fancy their chances of upsetting the odds this weekend. Priced at a juicy +320, Aston Villa could make a lot of punters very happy on Matchday 1. 


Manchester United vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers Prediction

Wolverhampton Wanderers head into the new season in disarray following the untimely departure of Julen Lopetegui, with Gary O’Neil replacing the Spaniard in the Molineux hot seat just days before the campaign gets underway. 

By contrast, Manchester United enter the new season with plenty of optimism after finishing third last term. The Red Devils won 23 of their 38 Premier League clashes in 2022-23, cementing their status as genuine challengers. 

Granted, Man Utd’s price of -313 is nothing to write home about, but if you’re looking for a safe bet this weekend, I recommend backing Erik ten Hag’s men to claim all three points on Monday. 

Best Bet: Manchester United (-313) 

Finalize Your Matchday 1 Premier League Picks

Now that my Premier League picks for Matchday 1 are locked in, I’m ready to sit back and enjoy the action. If you like the look of my Premier League picks, feel free to make use of my advice this weekend. 

I also suggest checking out our guide to the 2023-24 European soccer season. My colleague has covered all the major leagues in that article, from the Bundesliga and Serie A to La Liga and Ligue 1, so be sure to take advantage of the betting advice there.

Now, all you need to do is place your Matchday 1 Premier League picks!