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|Match Result and Both Teams to Score||Odds|
Back Manchester City to win and both teams to score in the Caesars sportsbook.
Manchester United have the attacking talent to find the net, but that will not be enough to avoid defeat in the derby.
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Manchester City supporters were beginning to fret after their team failed to make a breakthrough in the first 75 minutes of their trip to Everton last weekend.
Pep Guardiola’s side had lost 3-2 to Tottenham Hotspur the previous week, allowing Liverpool back into the Premier League title race. A failure to beat Everton would have given Jurgen Klopp’s men the initiative. That is why Phil Foden’s late goal at Goodison Park was so crucial, extending City’s lead at the summit of the standings to six points.
Liverpool are by no means out of the race yet.
They have a game in hand on the champions; presuming they win that, the gap at the top will be back to three points. The two teams will face off at the Etihad Stadium next month, where a win for either could see them end the day in the first place. City have occupied top spot since the beginning of December, while Liverpool have only ended one game week in that position this season. Even so, the battle to be crowned champions of England is very much alive.
Slip-ups can happen in any fixture.
City drew with Southampton in January. The Saints had previously held them to a 0-0 draw at the Eithad, while City were beaten 2-0 by Crystal Palace in October.
Liverpool, too, are not immune from dropping points unexpectedly. They have done so against Brentford, Brighton & Hove Albion, and Leicester City this term.
Having said that, there are certain games that look particularly dangerous – and the Manchester derby is definitely one of those for City.
United are not exactly firing on all cylinders, but their squad is packed full of talent and they have a habit of pulling out big results in this fixture.
United have only lost one of the last five Premier League derbies. They have not been defeated at the Etihad since 2018. This could be a banana skin for City.
United supporters might actually prefer City to win the Premier League than Liverpool. But they will not be thinking about the title race when they take to the field on Sunday; United have enough on their own plate.
A 0-0 draw with Watford last weekend has left the Red Devils in a precarious position in their bid to finish in the top four.
That is curious when you consider Ralf Rangnick’s side are currently fourth in the table, but the fact Arsenal have three games in hand on United and are only two points behind means Mikel Arteta’s men are in pole position to qualify for the Champions League along with Manchester City, Liverpool, and Chelsea. The Caesars sportsbook sees it that way, too: Arsenal are priced at -137 to finish in the top four, while United have drifted to +188.
Rangnick has made improvements since he took charge at Old Trafford, but United are still less than the sum of their parts. Given the strength of their squad, it would be a major failure if the Red Devils finished outside the top four.
United’s recent triumphs over City have been based on a counter-attacking approach. Under both Jose Mourinho and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, they have been content to cede possession of the ball and sit deep, before breaking forward at speed in transition.
Yet such an approach might not be possible this time around. Cristiano Ronaldo no longer has the mobility to play such a role. It would make more sense for United to field Marcus Rashford at center-forward, but dropping Ronaldo for a big game is unthinkable. Rangnick will have to rely on the likes of Jadon Sancho and either Jesse Lingard, Rashford, or Anthony Elanga to lead the counter-attacks from out wide.
Guardiola’s team can at times be vulnerable to fast breaks, and it would not be surprising to see the visitors to the Etihad Stadium find the back of the net here.
Overall, though, City are a much stronger team.
The gulf between the sides was painfully apparent in the reverse fixture, and although United have got better since the final days of Solskjaer, they are nowhere near the level required to compete with the likes of City and Liverpool for the title. Back a home win and both teams to score.
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|Manchester City vs Manchester United Information|
|Teams||Manchester City vs Manchester United|
|Location||Etihad Stadium, Manchester, England|
|Time||Sunday, 6 March 2022, 11.30 AM EST|
|How to watch||USA Network|
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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