Few rivalries in English football can equal the passion, star power and intensity of the Manchester Derby and this weekend we will be spoiled as the two Premier League titans meet at the Etihad Stadium to close the curtain on Gameweek 12. Yes, Manchester United, who has had success in this fixture over the last few seasons, visits Manchester City to highlight the weekend in what should be a wildly entertaining affair.
You won’t catch United at 7/1 in 1X2 betting very often, but here we are. Elsewhere on the board at Bovada, City is -250 with the draw at +425. The total is set at 3 with OVER -130 and UNDER +110. The Citizens are 1.5-goal favorites at EVEN money in spread markets with United -120 as dogs.
Pep Guardiola and the Citizens will look to keep their blistering start to the season going while Jose Mourinho and Manchester United may have just found a bit of form and will look to play spoiler on their rival’s turf. Something they have been able to achieve in recent meetings.
Let’s dig into this game and find some bets, shall we?
United has the Edge in this Fixture
As good as Manchester City has been down the years (well, since ownership changed hands in 2008) and as much money as the club has tossed around in transfer windows, this fixture has been a bit of a banana peel in recent seasons.
Manchester United has taken seven points from this fixture over the last three seasons. This, obviously, includes United’s 3-2 win last season which was City’s only defeat at the Etihad. That game was eye-opening in particular as City scored two goals in quick succession to go up 2-0 entering halftime. United went onto score three unanswered goals to win thanks to a brace from Paul Pogba.
The 2016-17 fixture was a nil-nil draw while the 2015-16 game was a 1-0 United win courtesy an early Marcus Rashford strike. United certainly hasn’t shared the same success as their noisy neighbor in recent campaigns, but they can hang their hat on strong showings when they visit the Etihad to quiet, albeit temporarily, said neighbor.
One-Sided Manager Matchup
Considering where they’ve managed down the years, Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have clashed several times with Sunday’s meeting the 22nd in their careers. While Jose certainly has some big wins, the edge between these two has certainly gone to Pep.
In those previous 21 meetings, Pep has 10 wins with Mourinho winning five and six ending in draws. That gives the Spaniard 36 points to Jose’s 21; a decided edge on the touchline to be sure. In terms of goals, Pep’s sides have scored 39 against Mourinho’s 28. The average of 1.86 per game is the most any other manager’s sides have been able to bang home against Mourinho.
The 10 wins against Mourinho equal Pep’s most against other bosses with Joaquin Caparros while the losses Mourinho has suffered at Pep’s hands are by far the most against any manager. The next is Rafael Benitez, who has defeated the Portuguese six times in 19 meetings.
City Dominates Everything
Look, we all knew City was going to one of two or three clubs to contend for the Premier League trophy, especially on the heels of their amazing 2017-18 title run. But the way they have begun the campaign has them looking as if they might be better than last year’s squad. Which is a scary thought.
Entering the Manchester Derby, City has scored 33 goals (six more than Chelsea) and only conceded four (one less than Liverpool), both are best in the league. But their dominance doesn’t stop there. Time of possession? They lead the league there too at 63.9 percent. Shots per game? Yup. 20.8. Pass accuracy? Of course. City leads the league at 89.3 percent. They also give up the lowest amount of shots in the league (6.5 per game), striker Sergio Aguero is tied for the league lead in goals (seven) and Raheem Sterling and Benjamin Mendy are tied for the league lead in assists with five. It’s just domination across the board.
United has been in good form and is coming off an impressive win away to Juventus in midweek Champions League action. Still, they really have their work cut out for them against the runaway freight train that is Manchester City. Pep and the Citizens will have had this one circled since fixtures came out and they will want revenge on blowing last year’s 2-0 lead at the Etihad.
Soccer has a plethora of betting options so you’ll have a ton to choose from in this contest. As you’ll note in the video above, I’m gonna take my chances on OVER 3 here at -130. City just feels unstoppable and I don’t think United can stop them. I’m not saying City will bag three by themselves necessarily, but I think there is goals in this one.
If you do think City will take care of that total by themselves, take a shot on their team total of 2.5 with the OVER at +110 for some better value.
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