Brighton & Hove Albion vs Manchester United - Predictions & Odds
- Manchester United will be looking to extend unbeaten run amid Champions League tussle
- Brighton has pulled clear of the bottom three but safety is not yet guaranteed
- United has found its stride under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and should triumph here
|What||Brighton & Hove Albion vs Manchester United|
|Where||Amex Stadium, Brighton, England|
|When||Tuesday, 30 June 2020, 3.15 PM EST|
|How to watch||NBC Sports|
Manchester United had a good weekend in the FA Cup but a bad one in the Premier League. Harry Maguire’s late goal in extra time of its quarter-final clash with Norwich City sealed a 2-1 victory and booked the team’s place in the last four of the competition. But on the same day, Wolverhampton Wanderers overcame Aston Villa to move three points clear of United in the top-flight table.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will turn his attention back towards the Premier League on Tuesday when United has the chance to climb back above Wolves and into fifth place. It is not yet clear whether the latter position will be sufficient for a place in next term’s edition of the Champions League; Manchester City was hit with a two-season ban from continental competition for breaching UEFA’s Financial Fair Play regulations but has appealed the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Until City’s fate has been decided, United must target fourth.
Brighton’s ambitions are not quite as lofty, although it will also be buoyed by its recent form. Graham Potter’s side spent the league’s three-month hiatus looking nervously over its shoulder, having failed to win any of its first nine games of 2020. That lean spell had seen Albion fall just one place in the table, but the gap separating it from the bottom three had been getting smaller and smaller.
Yet in its first match back, Brighton upset the odds to beat Arsenal 2-1. It followed that up with a creditable goalless draw with Leicester City, which looks well placed to qualify for the Champions League this term. All of a sudden things are looking up for Albion, but it should not expect a second win of the calendar year in this one.
Brighton vs Manchester United Odds
|Manchester United to Win to Nil||Odds|
Odds taken June 29 from DraftKings
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United has conceded one goal in its two Premier League encounters since the resumption, and that was down to individual errors from Harry Maguire and David de Gea rather than any structural shortcomings. Similar mistakes could crop up again, of course – De Gea has endured another difficult season – but the overall defensive picture makes for positive reading.
United has conceded only 31 goals in the Premier League this term, with only newly crowned champion Liverpool and Manchester City – its two rivals, no less – having let in fewer. A win to nil looks like a good bet here.
Things Beginning to Fall Into Place for Previously Under-Fire Solskjaer
It is not too long ago since Solskjaer was under severe pressure at Old Trafford. The Norwegian is a club legend at United, but he has little in the way of managerial experience at the highest level of the game, and the availability of former Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino since November only served to increase the scrutiny on the ex-Red Devils striker.
Back-to-back losses to Liverpool and Burnley left Solskjaer in a tricky position in mid-January, but the arrival of Bruno Fernandes later that month kick-started a rival. With Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford now fit again, United’s attack looks in fine fettle ahead of the run-in.
There are still question marks over certain areas of the team. It remains to be seen, for instance, whether Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay, or Fred is the ideal man to play alongside Pogba and Fernandes in midfield. But United, now unbeaten in its last 14 games in all competitions, has made huge strides since the start of the year.
Brighton Looking up After Ending Agonizing Wait for a Calendar-Year Win
Brighton left it late before sealing victory over Arsenal, requiring an effort from Neal Maupay deep into second-half stoppage time to pick up maximum points. It was a huge goal and probably the most significant Brighton has scored this term; that victory, together with the point gained from last week’s trip to Leicester, means Potter’s charges head into this game six points clear of the drop zone. Two more victories would almost certainly be sufficient to secure the club’s top-flight status for another year.
That would represent a successful first season in charge for Potter, who has evolved the team’s style of play while also attempting to keep it clear of demotion. Brighton now has some additional breathing space, and it will consider Tuesday’s match a free hit.
United Will Have Too Much Quality and Should Keep Another Clean Sheet
United has only conceded two goals in its last seven outings in the Premier League. In that time it has shut out Wolves, Chelsea, Manchester City and Sheffield United – all teams that are vying for European qualification – as well as Watford.
Brighton has not exactly been prolific since the turn of the year, and has failed to score in three of its four most recent matches. Backing a United win to nil, therefore, looks sensible.
Take the Yes option here – United has been strong defensively for much of the season and it is hard to see it not scoring.