Manchester United vs. Manchester City and Pick to Win
Date:Saturday, September 10th 2016
Where: English Premier League – Manchester, UK
by Keith, Professional Soccer/Football Handicapper, Predictem
Match Odds: Manchester United 11/8, Draw 27/11, Manchester City 27/11
Moneyline: Manchester United +137, Draw +245, Manchester City +245
Over/Under Best Market: UNDER 1.5 5/2 (+250)
There is no more of an anticipated match-up in all of Europe than “The Battle of Manchester”. The two premier teams in the Premier League, Manchester United and Manchester City will square off in a early season collision that has many more implications than cross-city bragging rights. Clayton versus Trafford, Red versus Blue, both squads find themselves sitting at the top of the Premier League table with 9 points each. Both outfits remain undefeated in English Premier League play and unbeaten in their last five outings. For the Red Devils they are 4-0-1, while the Cityzens are 5-0. Both United and City have ransacked opposition and seemingly the two were destined for a star-crossed collision of epic proportion.
Both Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have a spirited rivalry, this much is documented back to their days in Spain and now the embers have rekindled in the North West of England. As we have championed previously, Jose Mourinho and Zlatan Ibrahimovic have lived up to the billing. Red Devils supporters had to hold their breath when United took to the road against a spirited Hull side, but in the end they would come out ahead by virtue of one Marcus Rashford. United has the depth and talent to attack from all angles but if there was a team that actually matches up well with this squad on paper, or perhaps maybe even better it is their rivals across town, Manchester City.
Manchester City has incinerated any opponents they have encountered after dramatics of their own against Sunderland to coronate the Pep Guardiola era. City has scored at will and their personnel have scorched and torched the pitch in innovative and unique methods week in and week out. Most notably, forward Sergio Aguero has emerged early as a lethal offensive weapon. In addition, City supporters are finally enjoying the fruits of Raheem Stirling’s labor as the former Liverpool midfielder has begun to produce, emerging as a secondary offensive weapon in the deep Manchester City arsenal. City has a plethora of tools in their chest and they are certainly relishing the opportunity to square off with their cross-city rivals. The city will be divided and though United is a short trip on the Metrolink from the Eastern regions of Manchester where City resides, the trek will certainly be arduous in to hostile territory. Both teams are engaged in this one with so much at stake. For City in particular a win here could actually set them up for an English Premier League championship by virtue of the fact they will play host to United later in the campaign within the cozy confines of Etihad Stadium.
Typically, games of this billing never live up to the hype. While many expect fireworks and drama, this game has all the more propensity to end in a scoreless draw. In fact, that is the option we are going to target in this market. Contests of this nature are polarizing, everyone with an opinion will stake a bet on either side while both managers may approach this one academically. For both Mourinho and Guardiola, not losing this game may benefit them more than actually risking it all for an early season win. Without doubt, deferring to a later date to resolve the matter may be most prudent. While three points may be tasty, securing one point and forcing their rivals to play at a high level weekly may be the more prudential strategy. Do not be surprised if both squads enter this contest with an air of caution, resulting in scoring kept to a minimum. There are 34 games to be played after this contest and assuredly there will be a second encounter to settle the account. Thus we are going to lay either side in a low scoring outing that is contrarian to the results produced by either squad. We’re going scoreless draw with a chance to net nearly five units if all bodes well.
Manchester United Recent Form
W – Hull City 1-0
W – Southampton 2-0
W – Bournemouth 3-1
W – Leicester City 2-1
D – Everton 0-0
Manchester City Recent Form
W – West Ham United 3-1
W – Steaua 1-0
W – Stoke 4-1
W – Steaua 5-0
W – Sunderland 2-1
Keith's Prediction for the Game: Draw 27/11 (+245) and UNDER 1.5 (+250)
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