Jose To Use Another Of His Nine Lives Today?
It looked like Jose Mourinho was wandering onto thin ice again earlier this week but that man has more lives than a cat sanctuary and the St Mary’s Stadium can stage another of his mini revivals later on.
Southampton have serious problems having leaked 3 to bottom-of-the-table Fulham last weekend as they sank into the relegation zone. Mark Hughes is under pressure and while Mourinho finds the right result at the right time, Southampton bosses must be wondering where the next victory is coming from.
Their only league win this season was 3 months ago to the day and now they face a team they haven’t beaten at home since 2003 when Graeme Le Saux was lining up at left-back.
Victor Lindelof’s absence from the visiting team bus isn’t cause for celebration because he was starting to show Premier League quality and had nailed down a starting berth at the heart of Mourinho’s defence. The Swede was growing in confidence by the minute and while United may be more vulnerable today without him, Southampton’s attack isn’t going to shake their boots.
Danny Ings is racing to be fit, which is the last thing the doctor would order for a team who have only scored 4 goals in 540 minutes of Premier League football at home this season.
United meanwhile have scored more away from home than they have on their own patch
So despite a couple of paint-drying exercises over their last two fixtures at Old Trafford, Mourinho will be keen to exaggerate the clean sheets and they’ve drifted to a tasty price. 20/23 is a generous addition to any coupon this weekend for a side who should have enough to beat Southampton, even at their most mediocre.
City To Bite Cherries
Manchester City have been brushing opponents aside with their eyes shut at home this season with 27 of their 40 goals scored in front of their home support. Bournemouth on the other hand have lost their last 3 visits to the Etihad by a four-goal margin so plenty will be looking at the handicap markets to add value to City’s price because you’re not going to get rich backing them to win at 1/8.
While Guardiola’s troops have only shipped 5 league goals all season, 4 of those have come at home and their South Coast visitors have found the net in 8 of their last 9 fixtures. No team outside the top 5 in fact has scored more than The Cherries so if we assume City are going to win again, adding in the Bournemouth to score scenario takes us to the better side of Even money (29/20).
Away Day Blues
It’s a derby-fest tomorrow and it would be a surprise if Everton get any change out of their local rivals. The Toffees would be 3rd in the table on their home form alone, but lie a lowly 13th in the away league table so it’s safe to say they aren’t the hottest of travellers.
There’s only a short trip to negotiate tomorrow but every Premier League visitor to Anfield this season has left empty-handed with the exception of Man City who managed a point. Cardiff’s 4-1 defeat there was notable in that they managed to score, which is more than can be said for Man City, Fulham, Southampton, Brighton and West Ham who all drew a blank.
Jurgen Klopp is turning Anfield into a fortress again and they should justify odds of 2/5 and maintain bragging rights on Merseyside until the next meeting.
Manchester United 20/23
Man City & BTTS 29/20
*Prices correct at time of publication