By Anis Bazza
Last Updated: 16th July 2018
Following the signing of Nice midfielder Jean Michael Seri, the Fulham to stay up odds are 1/2.
Slaviša Jokanović’s Premier League newcomers announced the purchase of the Ivorian midfielder on Thursday morning for a reported fee of £18m.
Last year Seri was inches away from securing a move to Barcelona, with Nice president Jean-Pierre Rivere claiming his Catalan counter-part Josep Bartomeu had expressed his ’embarrassment’ at bungling the transfer.
Nice had agreed a deal to see him play for the Blaugrana, but it failed to materialise. The 26-year-old stayed with the Ligue 1 side for another season before joining Fulham for the start of their Premier League adventure.
In what has been described as a huge coup by supporters, Seri has signed a four year contract til 2022 with the option to extend for a further year.
Fulham have also completed a deal for Seri’s former Nice team-mate Maxime le Marchand.
These two pieces of business add real quality and guile to a side that won promotion through the Championship play-offs.
While Fulham odds to stay up stand at 1/2, their top half finish odds are betting at 5/1.
Encouragingly for Fulham’s odds of finishing in the top half, Newcastle came up and secured a top 10 finish at the first time of asking last season.
West Ham managed that feat as well back in 2012/13 whilst Birmingham City finished 9th in 2009/10.
An impossible feat it is not.
Other promoted teams have come close over the last 10 seasons too with Norwich (2011/12) and West Brom (2010/11) missing out on a top ten finish as result of an inferior goal difference and Swansea (2011/12) by the infuriating margin of a single goal scored.
Crystal Palace (2013/13) were another side to finish 11th in their first season following promotion.
Our betting prediction is a Fulham top half finish in 2018/19 – a pick at 5/1.
Anis grew up supporting Manchester City but found joy and solace across Europe’s major football leagues. Increasingly passionate about NBA, he is interested in and has written extensively about different aspects of sport across the years, previously working at Sky Sports News and Sport360 newspaper in Dubai. He studied Journalism at University but spent a large portion of his academic years building City Watch instead - the largest independent Manchester City Twitter account and website.