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Football: bet365's Market Movers as Everton slip further into relegation battle

With Everton being drawn ever closer to the bottom three, MK Dons cementing their play-off credentials, and Charlton losing again, we’re looking at the biggest Market Movers.

A couple of months ago, it seemed inconceivable that anyone outside of Norwich, Burnley, Watford, Newcastle and at a push, Leeds, could be relegated.

While Everton were enduring a torrid run at the time of Rafa Benitez’s departure, it seemed unthinkable that A) a squad of that quality could get sucked into it and B) the teams around them could put enough results together to get away from it. But since Boxing Day, the Toon have picked up 21 points and the Toffees have picked up three.

On September 13th, Everton were clapped off after a 3-1 victory over Burnley took them into the top four with Rafa Benitez’s side at 7/1 to finish in the Champions League places. Fast forward to 13th March and Everton were being booed off having being beaten at home to Wolves with just goal difference keeping them out of the bottom three and priced at 15/8 for relegation.

Does this Everton side have the stomach for a relegation fight? Because that’s what they’re in right now. They may have three games in hand over Watford, but they simply don’t look like winning. They still have massive trips to Burnley and Watford, as well as facing West Ham, Liverpool, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United before the season is out, all while fitting in at least one more FA Cup tie.

And who’d have thought that after that the draw at Old Trafford at the beginning of October, where in truth, Everton were unlucky not to leave with all three points. The visitors were into 2/1 for the top six and 50/1 for the drop, and the chat on the way home down the East Lancs Road would have been about the Champions League next season not the Championship.

The Thursday night clash against Newcastle is a huge one for Everton Football Club.

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One of last season’s promotion fancies, Charlton cut ties with Lee Bowyer with the club outside of the play-off places, replaced by Nigel Adkins. Adkins steadied the ship between March and the end of the season, the Addicks missing out on the top six by goal difference, and were fancied for another run at it this season.

Priced at 9/2 for promotion and 13/8 for the top six, they drifted to 25/1 and 10/1 respectively when losing 3-2 at home to Accrington in October with Nigel Adkins losing his job.

The Addicks, who were into 4/1 for relegation, then won four and drew one of their next five League One games under the then caretaker Johnnie Jackson, and were into 11/2 for the top six after the win against Plymouth with wing-back Ben Purrington in the middle of a purple spell in front of goal.

Jackson was appointed on a permanent basis a week before Christmas with Charlton at 8/1 for the top six, but they’ve only won three league games since and are on a current run of six defeats and a draw in their last seven outings and they needed a penalty to score their first goal in five matches at Accrington.

While those below them shouldn’t have enough to pull Charlton into any real danger, Jackson will be looking for a strong end to this season to at least give them something to build on for next season.


MK Dons have been working hard on the training ground and Harry Darling’s fourth goal since the beginning of February preserved their unbeaten record against promotion rivals Wigan.

After the 1-0 win over Wycombe at the end of September, Liam Manning’s side were 5/1 for a top two finish, but out to 12/1 for the automatics and 6/5 for the top six after a 2-1 defeat at Oxford in December.

After the coupon-busting 1-0 defeat against 8/1 shots Doncaster Rovers in January, MK Dons were 80/1 in the outright and 7/1 to be promoted but they’re now 11 games unbeaten, including eight wins and very much in the hunt for automatic promotion at 10/3.


At the start of March last year, Julien Stephan was let go from Rennes after being dumped out of their Champions League group without a win, and with Champions League football the following season looking increasingly unlikely.

Bruno Genesio took over and secured a Europa Conference League spot on the final day, where they topped a group containing Tottenham. While they need a result against Leicester in the second leg to progress further, they have bigger European ambitions on their mind.

Rennes were 25/1 for a top three finish and 50/1 in the ‘Betting Without PSG’ market before their home game against the French giants in early October, a side with a 100% record with Lionel Messi, Kylian Mbappe and Neymar expected to fill their boots against Genesio’s strugglers. 

Not only did the hosts stop them from scoring, the world class trio failed to land a shot on target between them as they ran out surprise 2-0 winners.

That victory kick-started their season and by the time Nice came to town in mid-December, they were into 5/2 in the ‘Betting Without’ and 11/10 for the top three. Defeats against Nice and Lens before Christmas and then other set-backs against Lens, Clermont and then PSG in mid-February saw them drift to 7/2 for the top three but, they're now into 5/4 in the 'Betting Without' and 4/7 for the top three with four straight wins which have produced 14 goals.

They’re still a point behind Marseille and Nice, but with a big goal difference only bettered in the league by PSG, and both games against the Parisians behind them, they look best-placed to secure Champions League football again.

By Steve Freeth

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