Manchester United v Chelsea Betting Tips & Predictions

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Previous Match Tips

The race for the final Champions League spot remains wide open as we approach the final three matches of the season. Realistically, this is a must-win clash for Manchester United if they are to make a late surge into the top four. The Red Devils currently trail Chelsea by three points while Arsenal will go five clear if able to beat Leicester earlier in the day. Spurs are all-but sure to join City and Liverpool in the top four but who will make up the quartet of Champions League qualifiers?

Both these teams will be hoping Leicester can do them a favour but Chelsea only have to match the Gunners’ result to remain in fourth place. Champions League football is the minimum expectation for the Blues faithful but it’s important to bear in mind they still have the option of qualifying via the Europa League, as, of course, do rivals Arsenal.

Top Tips

Draw @ 23/10

Under 2.5 goals @ 10/11

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Manchester United News: Herrera to return to the fray

Stretford End at Old Trafford in Manchester
apasciuto, flickr (Image Cropped)

Much of United’s slump in form can be attributed to the absence of Ander Herrera. With the Mexican named in the starting 11, the Red Devils have won 89% of matches under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer but without him, this figure drops to 44%. There was real hope that the midfielder could’ve featured in the Manchester derby but it would seem he wasn’t completely over his thigh problem. Handed an additional four days’ rest, the potentially PSG-bound man looks set for his first appearance of the month.

United Need Goals

When the Red Devils were thriving, Paul Pogba was scoring freely and Marcus Rashford, Romelu Lukaku and others were all chipping in. Now United can barely buy a goal, having managed just three in their last six games. Whether or not Solskjaer will make changes remains to be seen but in a game they really need to win they simply have to offer more threat.

Problems at the Back

United also have an issue at the other end of the pitch, with David De Gea increasingly looking like a man whose mind might be elsewhere (Madrid for example!). The Spaniard has made a number of errors and is sitting rather too high in the “Errors Leading to Goal” stats. He’s very much at the other end of the clean sheets table and as well as obvious mistakes he is conceding goals from shots you expect a keeper of his class to save.

Chelsea News: Hudson-Odoi surgery a success

Chelsea Warming Up Before Match at Stamford Bridge
Mark Freeman, flickr

Callum Hudson-Odoi has had to work harder than many Chelsea fans would’ve liked before he enjoyed his first Premier League start. Having finally worked his way into Maurizio Sarri’s preferred XI, the academy graduate started four consecutive league games, only to be struck down by a ruptured Achilles tendon. It’s an injury that has put a premature end to his season but the good news is that surgery was a complete success. If able to recover quickly, the 18-year-old should make his return around the start of next season.

Sarri slapped with misconduct charges

Tensions bubbled over after the fulltime whistle at Stamford Bridge on Monday night. The frustration of dropping points to Burnley along with the Clarets’ time-wasting tactics proved too much for Sarri who lost his cool. Assistant coach Gianfranco Zola claimed his fellow Italian was provoked by Burnley’s backroom staff but it’s up to the FA to decide if this is a sufficient defence. Should a guilty verdict be handed down, Sarri faces a possible fine and/or a touchline ban.

Analysis: Scoring woes continue for United

At the start of Solskjaer’s reign, United could hardly stop themselves from scoring but how things have changed. The top four hopefuls haven’t found the net from open play in nearly nine hours of football and have drawn a complete blank in four of their last five matches. They have the quality to return to scoring form but things simply aren’t clicking for any of the United strike force right now.

Neither side making a strong claim

It’s hard to justify backing either side to win this game given their respective problems so a draw (23/10) has to be the preferred option. For United, their main issue is they are horrendously out of form, tasting defeat in seven of their last nine matches. Not since 1962 have the former English champions endured such a concentration of defeats.

Chelsea aren’t suffering from the same crisis of confidence but they’ve continuously failed to perform in tough away fixtures. On all but one occasion this season, the Blues have lost away tests against top-half opposition so they are unlikely to impress at Old Trafford against an opponent who is sure to be smarting.

Defences to come out on top

Any stalemate we do see at Old Trafford this weekend looks destined to be a low scoring one featuring under 2.5 goals (10/11). The only times United looked at all threatening against Man City was on the counter but versus Chelsea there will be far fewer opportunities to break.

Facing a more defensively minded side, a lack of creativity looks like being a real issue once again for Solskjaer and his men. There is unlikely to be an abundance of chances created from the visiting side either judging by their away record. Eight teams have scored more goals on their travels than the Blues who remain far too reliant on Eden Hazard going forward.

No love lost between these sides

While the Manchester United – Chelsea rivalry is far from the biggest, nor one where local pride is at stake, their history over the years ensures their matches come with a little extra spice. Tensions have often flared as a result, with more than three cards shown in seven of their last eight meetings.

Chelsea’s disciplinary record has been quite exemplary under Sarri but Solskjaer has done little to curb his side’s aggressive streak. Only Watford have a worse fair play record than United this season and given the high stakes nature of this match, over 3.5 cards (8/13) is looking like a very safe bet.

Recent Matches

It wasn’t long ago that Chelsea were enjoying a 12 match unbeaten run against United but this exceptional streak ended following a 2-0 loss in April 2017. Since then, the Blues have lost another two matches against the Red Devils in what is now a far more evenly contested fixture.

18th February 2019: Chelsea 0 – 2 Mancheser United

The Manchester United players suffered no ill effects of a first defeat under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as they quickly returned to winning ways in this FA Cup fifth round bout. Paul Pogba picked out Ander Herrera to send the visitors ahead and the Frenchman grabbed a goal for himself on the stroke of half time. Failing to conjure up any sort of response after the break, Chelsea fans jeered Maurizio Sarri who branded his side’s showing as “confused” after the tie.

20th October 2018: Chelsea 2 – 2 Manchester United

Jose Mourinho returned to his former hunting ground hoping to turn United’s struggling season around. Things did not begin according to plan as 21 minutes into the contest an unchallenged Antonio Rudiger headed past De Gea. Martial’s second-half brace turned the game on its head and it looked like being enough to hand the visitors three points. With just seconds remaining however, one-time United target Ross Barkley was able to bundle the ball home, sparking scenes of wild jubilation. This swiftly led to a touchline fracas with Mourinho incensed by the celebrations of Chelsea’s technical assistant, Marco Ianni.

18th May 2018: Chelsea 1 – 0 Manchester United

Back in May, Chelsea and Man Utd contested the 2018 FA Cup final at Wembley. It was a tight match in the capital, but Hazard’s penalty after just 22 minutes was enough to win Chelsea their eighth FA Cup trophy.

25th February 2018: Manchester United 2 – 1 Chelsea

Man Utd ran out 2-1 winners in the Premier League meeting at Old Trafford last season, with Romelu Lukaku and Jesse Lingard getting the goals for the Red Devils. The hosts had to come from behind, though, after Willian had given the Blues the lead shortly before half time. Chelsea saw more of the ball and had more shots on goal, but United held firm to pick up all three points.

5th November 2018: Chelsea 1 – 0 Manchester United

It was another close game when the pair went head-to-head at Stamford Bridge in the league last term. Alvaro Morata’s excellent header 10 minutes after the break gave Antonio Conte’s Chelsea a 1-0 win over Mourinho’s United.

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