Newly-promoted QPR looks to start off the 2014-15 campaign with a positive result in a showdown with Hull City. We've examined the soccer betting odds closely and believe we've got the right pick to take to the sportsbooks.
QPR is the favorite but not by much. The home side is listed at just above +150, which leaves Hull City available for backing at roughly +215.
A draw, for those interested, can be found at +225 or so at the top sportsbooks. Check out the Soccer Odds live movement.
It's not like QPR dominated in the Championship last season to earn their promotion back into the top flight.
It was quite the opposite. The Hoops finished fourth in the regular season (23 wins, 11 draws and 12 defeats) and therefore had to fight their way through the playoffs. After barely getting by Wigan Athletic in the semi-final, they topped Derby County 1-0 to secure promotion.
Charlie Austin was the main source of goals for QPR throughout their promotion-winning campaign. He found the back of the net 17 times in league play, 11 more than any other player on the squad, and now gets a crack at performing on the grandest of all stages.
There were some notable moves made by QPR over the summer ahead of the 2014-15 season. Jordon Mutch and Steven Caulker were brought into the fold, with Esteban Granero and Yossi Benayoun departing the club. The Hoops also get Loic Remy back after he spent last season on loan at Newcastle.
Under experienced manager Harry Redknapp, we do think QPR has a great chance of avoiding relegation this season, but they have to take care of business at home, especially in these winnable situations. Let's see how they open up their account.
It wasn't the most successful of seasons for Hull in 2013-14, but they did enough to stave off relegation and that's all that matters in the end. They finished in 16th place, four points clear of the drop-down zone.
New additions Shane Long and Nikica Jelavic turned out to be an effective striker partnership for the club. Unfortunately, we won't be seeing it again in 2014-15.
Why? Well, Jelavic is still around, but Long looks like he's on his way to Southampton, which would be a big loss for Hull. Long has proven he can get it done in the Premier League and manager Steve Bruce would have loved to have his services.
Nonetheless, Hull has been active in the transfer market, so Bruce will be hoping his additions can help make up the loss.
Robert Snodgrass, Jake Livermore, Tom Ince, Andrew Robertson and Harry Maguire have all been brought into the fold, with that trio of Snodgrass, Livermore and Ince really standing out. Those three should be involved regularly right from the start, starting this weekend in London.
Premier League Pick
We like the look of QPR's squad, and they have a manager who knows what it takes to get results in the Premier League.
Thing is, Hull City's the same way, and we believe they've made some quality additions to the team. We think Bruce will set up his team right and guide the away team to a solid result.
With that said, we're recommending a draw with our soccer picks, in expectation that both teams will be satisfied with getting a point to open their 2014-15 seasons.
Pick: QPR 1 Hull City 1 at Bodog