After just 11 games of the Premier League season Paddy Power paid out on all bets for Chelsea to win the league, to the tune of £400,000.
At the time Chelsea stood top of the league, with an 8 point led over Manchester City. Fast forward to today, with Manchester City begining to find their stride, and the gap is down to 6 points.
Did Paddy Power pay out too soon?
Chelsea show no signs of letting up at the moment, but given they are still in all competitions there is plenty of scope for slips, fatigue and injuries to take their toll on the squad. 11 Games into the season may have seemed to soon to pay out, but if you're sat on a Chelsea to win the league bet elsewhere, you'd still be pretty confident of it coming in.
Bookmakers pay out early for a oouple of reasons. For starters it's good PR; the story will be posted around the globe, and on sites that might not ordinarily get involved in betting stories. They can also potentially place any loss on the market in a different tax year than where it would be if they waited until they league was finished in May.
Knowing Paddy Power and they're insatiable self promotion, it would seem to be mainly a PR stunt to pay out early on Chelsea. Nothing but good news if you'd backed them there though, especially if you still have an open lay at an exchange. That affords you a nice trading position from which to profit again, or a nice bonus if someone other than Mourinho is lifting the trophy come May.
Chelsea are best priced at 2/7 with William HIll to take the league, with Manchester City available at 4/1 with Bet Bright (along with their £30 risk free sign up) and Manchester United at a realistic (but still a waste of money) 28/1 at Victor Chandler.
Did Paddy Power pay out too soon? Probably. Do the benefits to them outway the cost and risk? Definitely, they'll make sure of that.