Reduced to 10 men against Newcastle on Sunday, Sheffield United took a 3-0 pasting – and manager Chris Wilder will presumably be keen to ensure his side give a good account of themselves against Man United.
That defeat to Newcastle was only the Blades’ third defeat of 2020 – with the other two coming against Man City and Liverpool. I guess Man United fall broadly into the same category as those two sides, even if Wilder’s team are currently only two points worse off than Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s in the table.
Ole’s team outclass the visitors in terms of talent, but Wilder’s side did hold United to a 3-3 draw back in November. Then again, with Bruno Fernandes in good form and Paul Pogba with a point to prove, the Manchester side should be at something close to their peak – they should be able to get this job done.
Sheffield United will also be without usual goalkeeper Dean Henderson, who is on loan from Manchester United. And the visitors, goalless since the return, will surely struggle to score at Old Trafford, where United have kept clean sheets in six of their last seven home games.
Back United to win to nil at 11/10 in our match events section.
Two less-than-terrific sides come together here, but Newcastle will have a spring in their step for this one – their 3-0 win at the weekend (against 10-man Sheffield United) is their best result of the season.
Yet Villa’s two away wins in the league have come against Norwich and Burnley, so it’s not completely unrealistic that they have enough about them to catch out Steve Bruce and co here.
In fact, with Villa desperate to extricate themselves from the bottom three they could still get the better of a Newcastle side that are no great shakes (or sheiks, as of yet). With Villa fighting for their survival, this could be an opportunity for the Midlands team.
Take a gamble on Villa at 9/4.
Can the Canaries hit back with a public statement of defiance, after getting schooled by the Saints at the weekend? Everton were doughty defenders in Sunday’s fiesta of anti-football against Liverpool, but maybe Carlo Ancelotti’s team can show a more creative side taking on a Norwich team that have scored just one goal in their last six league games.
Back Everton to win to nil at 5/2.
Wolves are a serious contender for a place in the top five – and, theoretically, the Champions League, with Man City banned from next season’s European competition. The Midlands side are sixth behind Man United on goal difference alone, so they have plenty of motivation to put in a good showing against a Bournemouth side that are in trouble.
The Cherries couldn’t catch fire against Crystal Palace at the weekend, and away from home against superior opposition it’s difficult to see Eddie Howe’s men pulling off any kind of surprise.
Wolves to win both halves in the Match Events section is a 3/1 shot. It’s a result that’s come in during two of Wolves’ last three home games in all competitions, while Bournemouth have lost both halves of each of their last two outings.
Unfashionable Crystal Palace have won their last four games without conceding a single goal, and they are the last side to beat Liverpool at Anfield, improbably (it happened back in April, 2017).
At some point this season, Liverpool will win another game – and it might well happen on Wednesday. Still, the home side are 1/4 to win. It’s not a price to set the pulse racing. The draw is 5/1, Palace are 12/1 for the win – and you can get 16/5 on the double chance draw or Palace win bet.
Assuming we’re here to gamble, the double chance flutter isn’t insane. A decent alternative, factoring in Palace’s recent run of clean sheets, could be had by taking a crack at the 0-0 score line at 14/1.
Burnley didn’t have the easiest of returns, facing a Man City side who were in the mood to dole out a drubbing on Monday night. Can Sean Dyche’s men shrug off that loss with a strong showing against the Hornets?
Watford don’t tend to score many on the road, and Burnley are probably more concerned with keeping things tight than with going all out for victory. It’s not the most thrilling bet in the world, but under 2.5 goals at 7/10 looks a reasonable shout.
Southampton are not a club to be relied upon – you just don’t know what you’re getting with the south coast mavericks who lost five of their last six games before beating Norwich at the weekend.
On the other hand, Arsenal are a bit of a laughing stock at the moment, seemingly always having the potential to implode. A loss to Man City is no disgrace but the manner of the defeat was humiliating, even if it could be laid at the feet of one player (that’s one way for David Luiz to earn a contract extension, I s’pose). But the loss to a Brighton team that have had real problems of their own this season shows up the Gunners’ lack of gumption.
With the languid Mesut Ozil seemingly at odds with the management at Arsenal, and significant injury woes to the likes of Pablo Mari, Granit Xhaka and goalkeeper Bernd Leno, how can anyone have confidence in the North London club, currently?
This one feels like the proverbial riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma – but sidestep the result, and we could still be onto a winner. Danny Ings continues to be the safest Saints bet in the sportsbook; he scored on Friday, and he’s 23/20 to find the net against the Gunners.
City are a better side than Chelsea, Guardiola is a more experienced manager than Lampard, and home advantage should count for very little here. In the last four league meetings at Stamford Bridge, City have won twice – and while many Premier League teams have restarted this campaign in sluggish form, City look as sharp as ever.
Chelsea are on a decent run of their own, it’s true – but the visitors have enough to come out on top. Another straightforward bet then – back City to win at 4/5.
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