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|Both Teams to Score and Total Goals||Odds|
|Yes and Over 2.5||-120
|No and Over 2.5||+841
|Yes and Under 2.5||+608
|No and Under 2.5||+191
Chelsea may have won at the weekend but they are still not firing on all cylinders, and the Saints were unfortunate to suffer defeat in their last outing.
Back both teams to score and over 2.5 goals (-120) in the FanDuel sportsbook
Pick made on 08/28/2022 at 07:29 PM EST
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What a difference a week makes. Manchester United were plunged into crisis after beginning the 2022/23 season with back-to-back defeats by Brighton & Hove Albion and Brentford. Those losses left them at the foot of the table and suggested that it would take a lot more than a new manager to lift United out of their malaise. At that point, Erik ten Hag must have been wondering whether he had made a big mistake in moving to Old Trafford from Ajax, a well-run outfit at which he was surrounded with astute operators.
But just as consecutive losses are guaranteed to dampen the mood at any club, successive victories are a universal tonic. The mood around the red half of Manchester is much brighter following United’s triumphs over Liverpool and Southampton. The first win was particularly crucial, coming as it did against their arch-rivals and a side that have become regular Premier League title challengers under Jurgen Klopp.
The second success was perhaps not quite as impressive: Southampton are a considerably weaker side than Liverpool, yet they could easily have picked up a point on Saturday. Bruno Fernandes’ excellent finish in the second half proved to be the difference between the two teams, but the Saints created numerous chances and United held on for all three points in large part due to their opponents’ profligacy.
Still, it was a hugely important win. Had United come unstuck at St Mary’s, it would have been yet another case of one step forward followed by two steps back. Instead, Ten Hag and his players will arrive at the King Power Stadium with renewed confidence, as United seek to build up a head of steam for the hectic couple of pre-World Cup months that lie ahead.
In the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons, Leicester were the best of the rest in England’s top tier. The fact that Foxes fans ended both campaigns feeling disappointed that their team had not qualified for the Champions League says it all about how well Brendan Rodgers’ side performed. Falling out of the top four on both occasions was certainly frustrating, but Leicester appeared to have established themselves in the top third of the division. They even won the FA Cup to boot.
It is fair to say their ambitions have shrunk since then. Leicester head into this fixture not just inside the relegation zone but in last place after a difficult summer which has, at the time of writing, seen just one new player move to the King Power Stadium – and that man, Alex Smithies, is a back-up goalkeeper. Several players have had their heads turned, including the Chelsea-bound Wesley Fofana and Arsenal target Youri Tielemans. Former club captain Kasper Schmeichel has joined Nice.
It never rains but it pours. Leicester created more than enough opportunities to avoid defeat by Chelsea at the weekend, yet their failure to convert saw them fall to a 2-1 loss to opponents that were reduced to 10 men in the first half. Rodgers now finds himself under pressure, with a large section of the fan base seemingly in favor of a change of manager.
Only Bournemouth, following their 9-0 shellacking by Liverpool at the weekend, have conceded more goals than Leicester so far this season. Daniel Amartey partnered Jonny Evans in the heart of the backline against Chelsea; the former is a decent player but his inclusion in that role represents a substantial drop-off from Fofana. Leicester have had some serious organizational issues for a while now and United’s attack should get some joy in transition.
In some ways, though, this is an ideal fixture for Leicester. Had they been hosting a smaller side – a Bournemouth, for example, or a Fulham – there would have been huge expectations on the Foxes to win. The crowd would have grown restless quickly and Rodgers may have drawn their ire.
All of that is possible against United, of course, but the fact Leicester are facing a member of the big six dulls expectations somewhat. The players that start on Wednesday may respond well to the adversity they find themselves in.
And for all Leicester’s issues, they still pack a punch going forward: Jamie Vardy, Harvey Barnes and James Maddison are talented attackers who can cause problems for any defense in the division. Go for over 2.5 goals and both teams to score in this one.
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|Teams||Leicester City vs Manchester United|
|Location||King Power Stadium, Leicester, England|
|Time||Thursday, 1 September 2022, 15.00 PM EST|
|How to watch||USA Network, fuboTV|
Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts. Email: [email protected]More info on Greg Lea
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