After what feels like a very
interesting week of football, the Manchester derby has a new edge to
it. While always a flagship game in the Premier League, Manchester
United arrive at The Etihad Stadium knowing that they could put
themselves back in the most unlikely of title shouts.
With Liverpool potentially taking the
three points against Fulham (though recent form from Liverpool makes
that less certain) earlier on in the day, as well as Chelsea taking
on Everton and Arsenal hosting Wolves all before kick-off, the
pressure is on.
Can United get themselves right back in
it? Or can City make sure they remain very much the club to beat in
A look at the current betting odds
shows that home team Manchester City are currently 2/5 to win, with
Manchester United at 6-1. In any other year, those odds would seem
generous for Jose Mourinho's team, but this year has seen them
struggle for the most part – that said recent form has been an
improvement. It would seem that the bookmakers aren't ruling out a
goal fest either, with betting odds of just 6-1 on their being more than five
goals. I can't see it being such a walkover, myself. If I intended to
place a bet, I'd likely go with odds of 5-1 for United to be winning
at half time. That may seem like an unusual choice, but they have
quality players and so while even away from home, a good spell early
on might mean they could go into half time a goal up.
After rattling in 12 goals in two
games, the tails are up for City. They look more fearsome than any
other side in the league, and boast an exceptional defence. Expect
City to come into this with more or less a full complement, too,
making it hard to really see them struggle to put together a wining
While Kevin de Bruyne being out should
derail a side, this City team are something else. They’ll be ready
to do some damage, especially after blowing the last derby between
the two clubs at home last year – the fateful 2-3 loss to blow a
title winning derby.
1-0 down against Juventus and looking
well and truly outclassed, United grabbed two goals from thin air to
win 2-1. The Red Devil are making a habit of springing late comebacks
and wins, and are actually doing more than just grin and bear results
out: they are playing like they have found the same verve that seem
them win here last season.
With some injuries mounting up and a
challenging few games, though, United might struggle to match City
for the full 90.
We can see City winning this – though
the procession many would have expected not too long ago feels like
it would be quite a shock now. Such is the quality of how United are
playing, City will need to make good of their oppositions sluggish
starts to get in control of this one.
If they can make sure they are out of
sight of a comeback, using their own desire to start fast versus the
more serene pace of United, City could win this handsomely. However,
we see it being a close home win – a lot closer than many would
have expected as the season has progressed.