Sunday’s game at Old Trafford is going to be a situation of high pressure for both of the teams involved. They are still both in with a chance of securing a top-four finish, but at the same time, they will both be searching for a win in order to achieve that. Only one of them, of course, can pull that off.
Of the two it is the home side, Manchester United who are the more desperate. They are in sixth, trailing fourth-placed Chelsea by three points and are worse off than the Blues in goal difference.
The odds on Manchester United to beat Chelsea are 17/10* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 27th, 2019 at 9:00 p.m.)
Manchester United 17/10
* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 27th, 2019 at 9:00 p.m.)
A lot of this game is going to be about a response from the Red Devils. They are badly out of form at the moment with four defeats in their last six Premier League games. After a 4-0 hammering at Everton last weekend, the Red Devils played host to rivals City in the Manchester derby at Old Trafford In midweek. They were brushed aside in the end by the Citizens, who claimed a 2-0 victory.
But that was the only defeat that the Red Devils have suffered in their last fourteen games on home soil in the top flight. So that at least is a pretty big positive for them and before the game against City they had put together a three-match winning streak at home in the top flight. That’s the form that they badly need to get back to try and keep their hopes for a top-four finish alive. Defeat in this one and that door would be pretty much slammed in their faces.
Given their drop in form, players have come under some heavy criticism and now the pressure has mounted on boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. After such a positive start in winning his first eight games in charge, it’s certainly a more testing time for him. Manchester United have averaged 1.9 goals per home game this season which is good and 76% of games at Old Trafford have gone over 2.5 goals. However, United have managed a clean sheet in just 12% of home games and it’s that defence which has continued to leave them vulnerable.
Twelve of the last sixteen meetings between Manchester United and Chelsea have ended under 2.5 goals. This is likely to be another tense meeting given what is at stake. Manchester United picked up a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge earlier this season and then took a 2-0 win there in the FA Cup.
Manchester United have lost one of their last three now against Chelsea in all competitions (W2 D1) so they do have a bit of head to head form. The reading gets even better in their recent home games against the Blues. Manchester United are unbeaten in their last five home games against the Blues in all competitions.
The Blues occupy fourth in the table and therefore they are the ones in control. However, their season has not been great by their standards, certainly not away from home. Chelsea have lost five of their seven away games played in the league since the turn of the new year. They did win the other two but were made to work hard in those success against the already-relegated Fulham and the relegation-threatened Cardiff. Chelsea won both of those games by a 2-1 scoreline, not exactly the most convincing of results from the Blues.
Chelsea have also had a really poor time of things away from home against the strongest sides in the division. From their six games played against the other top-eight teams, Chelsea have lost all of those, scoring just the two goals in those six games. Their overall away record this season is W9 D1 L7 and most of the damage has come in the second half of the season. Chelsea have had their struggles at the back, conceding in each of their last seven on the road.
Of the seven away defeats which they have scored this season, only one of them have been by a one-goal margin. So it adds up to some really poor reading from them. But then there are positives for them of course. They have the fourth-best defensive record in the league and only four teams have better away records than they have. But it’s just their current away from and lack of defensive strengths which is going to leave them vulnerable for this trip to Old Trafford.
United have lost five of their last six games in all competitions, and so are really going through the wringer at the moment. But there could be a glimmer of hope for them in this one because they are facing a Chelsea side who have been so poor on their travels. The odds on Manchester United to beat Chelsea are 17/10* (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on April 27th, 2019 at 9:00 p.m.) and actually that has some very nice appeal.
Manchester City have won five of their last seven visits to Old Trafford now and they badly need another one when they go there on Wednesday evening. The Citizens still have the fate of the Premier League title in their hands. It’s four games to go including this one and Man City know that if they produce four wins, they win the title again. The odds on Manchester City to beat Manchester United on Wednesday are at 4/9* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on April 23rd, 2019 at 2:42 pm)
Manchester City 4/9
Manchester United 13/2
* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on April 23rd, 2019 at 2:42 pm)
At this stage of the season now it is all about holding their nerve together. The Citizens are four wins from the title and this trip to Old Trafford on Wednesday night, is realistically, the biggest challenge in front of them. Following this, Manchester City will have away games at Burnley and Brighton, which sandwiches a home fixture against Leicester. Talking about holding their nerve, Pep Guardiola’s men did just that on the weekend.
After getting eliminated from the Champions League by Tottenham in an emotional night at the Etihad, just a few days later Manchester City had to play host to Spurs in the Premier League. The Citizens showed their nerve and their mettle with a 1-0 home success over the Lilywhites, getting the job done when so easily they could have crumbled under the weight of their Champions League failure.
That win over the Lilywhites gave the Citizens their tenth straight Premier League victory. That’s some hot streak. During that sequence of games they have claimed victories over Arsenal, Everton, Chelsea and Spurs so have stood up when it matters against some of the stronger sides in the division. The Citizens are on a four-match winning streak away from home at the moment and that is part of an overall read record of W11D2 L3 this season in the top flight.
On top of the powerful scoring that they have produced and are so capable of producing, the Citizens have been rock solid in defence in the league. In their last ten games, they have conceded just the three goals, earning seven clean sheets in that streak of games. In total, they have claimed a clean sheet in 56% of their away games this season, with both teams scoring in just 38% of City’s road fixtures.
Manchester City will be facing a Manchester United side who are having a rough time of things at the moment. The Red Devils have lost five of their last seven games in all competitions and on the weekend were hammered 4-0 at Goodison Park by Everton in the Premier League. It was such a poor and lifeless performance from them, that it’s pretty tough not to peg them as underdogs in this one.
But on the other side of the coin, the Red Devils can’t be as bad again as they were at Everton. This is a special occasion, a derby match at home against their biggest rivals. Surely the Red Devils will find something a little extra to at least be a little more competitive and push City? They should need no extra motivation for such a big game, but do they have it in them? The Red Devils are unbeaten in their last fourteen home games in the league after all.
United have gone W1 D3 L4 in their seven games played against the other Big Six sides this season in the Premier League. Right now Manchester City are clearly the better, clearly the more confident of the two sides stepping out into action in this Wednesday night fixture. But they will know that Manchester United will be a bit more fired up than they were on the action.
But the Citizens have handled themselves well against the top sides this season and they have a lot more at stake in this than their rivals do. That may end up being the difference maker at the end of the day. It may not take a lot for the heads of United to drop, along with their already criticised work ethics, if City gets an early goal on the board. The odds on Manchester City to beat Manchester to nil are at 13/8* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on April 23rd, 2019 at 2:42 pm)
The wonderful old rivalry between Arsenal and Manchester United gets renewed on Sunday in a 4:30 PM kick-off at the Emirates stadium in North London. The first meeting between these two this season produced a thrilling 2-2 draw at Old Trafford in early December.
While this great rivalry itself has produced so many classics over the years. There are a very important three points riding on this next clash between the two. The odds on Arsenal to beat Manchester United at home on the weekend are at 7/5 odds* (betting odds taken from bet365 on March 8, 2019, 7:07 PM)
Manchester United 2/1
Draw 13/5 odds
* (betting odds taken from bet365 on March 8, 2019, 7:07 PM)
This should be really fascinating battle between the two sides. In December’s meeting at Old Trafford, it was Arsenal who got themselves a lead twice in the fixture. Neither time that they managed to get themselves in front on the day, did they hold that lead for very long.
But the Gunners gave a good account of themselves in such a big away game. The odds-on Arsenal to beat Manchester United are at 7/5 to see them convert on home soil against the Red Devils* (betting odds taken from bet365 on March 8, 2019, 7:07 PM)
Arsenal have some terrific home form going at the moment. Their current streak of eight straight league home wins has left them in a position of holding the joint second best home record in the entire division. Only Manchester City have a better home record in this season’s league than Arsenal currently have. In their current eight match winning streak Arsenal have scored at least two goals in seven of those successes. Overall this season they have averaged 2.3 goals per home game.
So they have the attacking power behind them to cause Manchester United some problems again. Arsenal have also been strong at the back as well on home soil this season. The Gunners have conceded at an average of 0.8 goals per home fixtures this season. Their overall home record in the Premier League this season stands at W12 D2 L1 and they are unbeaten in their last 14 at the Emirates. Their only loss was in the very first home game of the season which was against Manchester City.
The Gunners have played four home games this season against other big six sides. In those, they have taken wins over Chelsea and Tottenham, and they earned a point against Liverpool along with that defeat against the Citizens. So Arsenal have done pretty well on home soil in their big home games. Eight of their 12 home wins this season have been by a to goal margin. The Gunners have scored 69% of their home goals in the second half of fixtures.
Manchester United are on a four-match undefeated streak of form against Arsenal across all competitions, winning three of those four. The last season’s corresponding fixture Manchester United collected a 3-1 victory at the Emirates, but Arsenal had won their two previous home games against the Red Devils, both with a clean sheet. There really hasn’t been much between them in recent meetings and in the last seven Premier league clashes Manchester United are slightly ahead with a W3 D2 L2 record over the Gunners.
This will, of course, be no easy challenge against Manchester United. The Red Devils are undefeated in the Premier League since December 22. They have won 10 of their last 12 played (D2). Their away form is right on point at the moment having won each of their last six. But it is worth putting into context that all but one of the six games were against sides who are currently in the bottom half of the table. The one exception of that away sequence was United’s 1-0 away win at Tottenham back in mid-January.
They do have the scoring form as well to put up a good showing in this one as they have averaged exactly 2 goals per away game this season. 73% of Manchester United away games this season have made it over 2.5 goals line. In their last six road games, the United defence has conceded just the two goals. But they will be facing a strong attack that Arsenal are currently carrying on home soil. Manchester United will be defending a one-point lead over Arsenal in the race for a top-four finish this season.
The heavyweight fixture of English football that is Manchester United v Liverpool rolls around on Sunday. What a tremendous showdown this should be as well. Earlier in the season when the two met, Liverpool had a comfortable time against a negative Red Devils approach, then still under Jose Mourinho.
However, since Ole Gunnar Solskjær took over, the Reds are flying. The odds on Manchester United to beat Liverpool are 21/20 (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on February 22nd, 2019 at 5:52 p.m.).
Manchester United 21/10
* (betting odds taken from February 22nd, 2019 at 7:09 pm)
“Revival” really is the only word that you can use to describe the transformation that the Red Devils have gone through. They haven’t looked back since making a managerial change last December. They were bold enough to recognise that things were working and the Red Devils have raced away to a W11 D1 L1 record in their last fourteen games played across all competitions.
The only loss in that sequence, and therefore the only defeat they have suffered under the guidance of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, happened in the UEFA Champions League at home against PSG recently. But in their very next game, they produced a fantastic performance away at Chelsea in the fifth round of the FA Cup to take a 2-0 win. They have a bit of their old swagger back do the Red Devils.
On the domestic front at home in the Premier League the Red Devils have won four of their last five (D1). They are currently on a big unbeaten stretch of 10 league games at Old Trafford and they have scored at least two goals in each of their last six on home soil. So they are going to pose a big threat in this one. They have looked direct and dynamic, particularly when they are playing on the counter-attack.
United have been boosted by Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial, two of their speedy forwards, being back in contention for this game after recent injury issues. The Red Devils have averaged over two goals per game this season, but the one surprise about their home form is that they have just the one home clean sheet. The odds on Manchester United to beat Liverpool and both teams to score in the match is at 9/2 odds (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on February 22nd, 2019 at 5:52 p.m.).
Liverpool pretty coasted to a 3-1 win at Anfield over Manchester United back in December. However, the Red Devils do have home form against Liverpool. Manchester United are unbeaten in their last five home games against Liverpool in all competitions. They have gone W3 D1 in their last four Premier League home games against the Reds. So they don’t make life easy for Liverpool at Old Trafford.
While Liverpool are still well in the race for the Premier League title, their form in 2019 has had a few stumbles. From the start of the season right through to the end of December, Liverpool dropped just the six points in their Premier League campaign. Since the turn of the new year, they have dropped a total of seven in just six games (W3 D2 L1).
So has the long season and pressure been catching up with them? If you look across all competitions in 2019, Liverpool have posted a W3 D3 L2 record, including a 0-0 draw at home against Bayern Munich in midweek in the UEFA Champions League. In just two of the games in that eight-match, sequence did Liverpool managed to score more than one goal in a match.
This is one of the great English fixtures on the calendar. It will be a raucous afternoon at Old Trafford and there will probably be a few meaty tackles flying around. The interesting thing is, despite their current strong form, the Red Devils are underdogs.
The odds on Manchester United to beat Liverpool are at 21/10 and that is some value that is actually pretty tough to ignore on a team in such good form (Betting Odds were taken from bet365 on February 22nd, 2019 at 5:52 p.m.).
The big tie of the FA Cup fifth round is going to the last one to kick off. On Monday night Manchester United will make the trip to Stamford Bridge to take on Chelsea. So another big name in the Cup will take a tumble. It’s an important game for both of these as they look to try and move towards securing some domestic silverware.
Manchester United 13/5
* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 14th, 2019 at 3:09 pm)
Manchester United won ten of their first eleven games under interim manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who came in to replace Jose Mourinho last December. They had their first taste of defeat under him though in midweek, losing 2-0 at Old Trafford against PSG in the UEFA Champions League. But take out that result against a top team and Manchester United’s domestic form is sparkling.
Manchester United started their FA Cup campaign this season with a comfortable home win over Championship side Reading. That then set them up for a difficult away game at Arsenal in the fourth round. But the Red Devils didn’t blink an eye, they stuck to their new positive approach and got their just rewards of a 3-1 win over the Gunners. Now it’s back out on the road for them against another of the country’s top sides.
Manchester United earned a 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea earlier this season in the Premier League. Things between the two sides are even with two wins each and that draw in their last five meetings. The Red Devils will arrive at the Bridge on a six-match winning streak away from Old Trafford. They have been scoring freely, a powerful counter-attacking plan helping them on that end. They have also taken four clean sheets in their last five away games.
Chelsea have lost four of their last nine games across all competitions. Last weekend they paid a league visit to Manchester City and were blasted out of sight in a 6-0 defeat. That heaped even more pressure on boss Maurizio Sarri in his first season in charge and you can see the frustration emanating from the manager. His team at times have looked unmotivated and Sarri hasn’t been quiet about holding the players themselves, including Eden Hazard, responsible.
But the interesting thing about Chelsea’s form is that their troubles have been away from home. Each of the four defeats in their last nine games have happened on their travels. Chelsea are actually on a five-match winning streak at the Bridge across all competitions.
But it is the lack of confidence from those away losses that could well have a knock-on effect. The Blues have made it to the EFL Cup Final where they face Man City soon, but they will be massive underdogs for that Wembley clash. The frailties that have shown up in their defence recently will come under some scrutiny.
Chelsea won the FA Cup Final last season against United thanks to an Eden Hazard penalty, the only goal of the match. Chelsea have won their last three FA Cup matches against the Red Devils by a 1-0 scoreline. In the last ten meetings in all competitions, it has been Chelsea in the ascendancy. The Blues have a W5 D3 L2 record against Manchester United in that sequence. The Blues are unbeaten in nine home games against Manchester United in all competitions.
Even though Chelsea boss the head to head recently over the Red Devils, the odds on Manchester United to beat Chelsea at 13/5 are pretty appealing* (betting odds taken from Bet365 on February 14th, 2019 at 3:09 pm). Chelsea rely heavily on one man (Eden Hazard) and their defence looks far from organised at the moment. They will be under pressure from a United side who have already proven themselves in a big FA Cup away match this season. Away win.
Manchester United caused a stir on Sunday as they collected three points from a 1-0 success away at Tottenham. That was the biggest test for interim boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer since having been brought in to revive the club’s fortunes. The former United striker arrived last December to replace Jose Mourinho.
After winning his first four Premier League games, the fog was lifted. But it was all in context because they were all victories against sides currently in the bottom half of the table. Throw in an expected win over Championship strugglers Reading in the FA Cup and Solskjaer had had a somewhat easy run of games. Then came the league trip to Spurs.
5/6 Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
5/2 Mauricio Pochettino
7/1 Zinedine Zidane
10/1 Gareth Southgate
12/1 Massimiliano Allegri
16/1 Diego Simeone
* (betting odds was taken from Paddy Power on January 14th, 2019 at 2:07 pm)
Any questions that were there about Solskjaer in this test was answered. They relied on a positive counter attacking set up, not afraid to pump the ball long and use their pace. It worked for them as Marcus Rashford got the only goal of the game just before the half time break. Then it was all hands to the pump to defend.
Spurs had more than enough chances to get an equaliser and indeed win the game. They peppered the United goal in the second half, but keeper David de Gea was equal to everything. The Spaniard pulled off eleven saves in the match in total to help United secure a massive three points.
Bookmaker Paddy Power had apparently seen enough. On Sunday they paid out on bets having backed Solskjaer to be the next permanent Manchester United manager. Solskjaer was only brought into Old Trafford on a temporary basis until the end of the season. In the summer he is supposed to be going back to his other managerial job at his club Molde.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino has been touted as one of the key men to get the Old Trafford job on a permanent basis. He has drifted to 5/2 to be the next United boss leaving him as the second favourite in the market. Former Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane is a 7/1 option to be in the hot seat at the start of next season* (betting odds taken from Paddy Power on January 14th, 2019 at 2:07 pm).
Paddy Power has also produced a market for some Solskjaer Special, including guiding Manchester United to an unbeaten run for the rest of the Premier League season.
2/1 Man Utd to beat Liverpool in Old Trafford in the 2018/19 EPL
9/4 Man Utd to beat Man City in Old Trafford in the 2018/19 EPL
7/1 Man Utd to beat Liverpool & Man City in Old Trafford in the 2018/19 EPL
25/1 To go the rest of this season’s Premier League unbeaten
* (betting odds was taken from Paddy Power on January 14th, 2019 at 2:07 pm)
The three points earned at Wembley on Sunday left Manchester United in sixth place in the table, but level on points with Arsenal directly above them. The Red Devils have a six-point gap to make up to fourth-placed Chelsea. Paddy Power rate the chances of the Red Devils securing a top-four finish at 5/2* (betting odds taken from Paddy Power on January 14th, 2019 at 2:07 pm).