Betting: Punters gamble on Pulis for Manager of the Year award but Rodgers remains favourite

Many consider Liverpool’s Brendan Rodgers a worthy favourite for the accolade but a number of bets have come in for Tony Pulis to scoop the prize

Liverpool’s fantastic run of form has not only put the Reds in pole position to claim the Premier League title but manager Brendan Rodgers is also the favourite to claim the Manager of the Year award.

Paddy Power have the former Swansea boss at just 4/11 (1.36) to be the man voted the best manager in the country at the LMA Awards, having offered the 41-year-old at 20/1 (21.0) when the market was first formulated earlier in the season.

Rodgers has named Manager of the month twice this season (August 2013 and March 2014) and if he can be the man to lead Liverpool to a historic victory, having been 33/1 (34.0) to win the title before the season began, it would be tough to see anyone else rivalling him for the prize.

Paddy Power spokesman Sebastian Bell said “The majority of betting has been on the favourite Rodgers after his superb job at Anfield whilst one potentially prophetic punter backing the Palace boss with a €70 bet at 12/1 (13.0)”.

There is one man who could lay claim to the award despite Liverpool’s success though, especially as he has had a shorter period of time in charge of his current club. That man is Tony Pulis.

The former Stoke boss left the Potters at the end of last season but returned to Premier League management following a length recruitment process – with Crystal Palace, who eventually appointed the 56-year-old in November 2013, to replace Ian Holloway who had resigned a month earlier.

Holloway’s side had lost seven of their first eight Premier League games and although Keith Millen’s tenure in temporary charge brought about four more points, Pulis had a mountain to climb if he was to keep Palace in the Premier League. The Eagles were 1/33 (1.04) to be relegated when Pulis took over.

Since then though, the team have gone from strength to strength, picking up enough points to not only stave off what seemed an inevitable relegation but to also put them on track for a potential top half finish. Palace now sit just three points behind Pulis’ former club Stoke who occupy 10th spot.

As well as some shrewd transfer business in January, Pulis has instilled a defensive solidity that has seen only Chelsea concede fewer goals than his side since he took over, and a recent 1-0 victory over Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea was the best of nine Premier League wins to nil.

Pulis is now 100/30 (4.33) to be named Manager of the Year at the LMA Awards, a price that has attracted plenty of attention in light of Palace’s 3-2 win over Everton on Wednesday. Jose Mourinho is a 9/1 (10.0) chance and Roberto Martinez is priced at 22/1 (23.0).

Despite his incredible job at Selhurst Park the bookmakers clearly believe Brendan Rodgers will garner enough of the votes to scoop the prize.

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