Who Wins the Most Crucial Manchester Derby in Recent Years?
This Wednesday evening in the Premier League sees two big games. Wolves take on Arsenal at Molineux with the Gunners still chasing a top four spot and the potential of a place in next season’s Champions League. Manchester United also have that goal as the sixth placed side face local rivals Manchester City, who themselves are embroiled in a battle for top spot in the Premier League table with Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.
All in all, it promises to be a decisive night one way or the other for all three of the teams battling it out for honours or position at the end of the season at the top of the Premier League table. Wolves though have been the scourge of the top six sides this season, picking up points against almost all of them and they could yet have a big say in both the race for the Champions League and the Premier League title race (they face Liverpool at Anfield on the final day of the season).
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Let’s begin our preview of the games on Wednesday with the game at Old Trafford as the two Manchester giants clash in what could be the pivotal game of the season for both teams ultimate ambitions.
Premier League Fixtures – Wednesday 24th April
Manchester United v Manchester City
Sixth takes on second in the Premier League, a Manchester derby, United on a run of six losses in their last eight games, City winning nine of their last ten and needing a win to go back top of the table with three games of the season left to go. Add to that City’s fantastic record at Old Trafford in recent years and you have the recipe for one of the most intriguing derby clashes in many years.
Certainly all the key factors, league position, recent form and how the team has performed at this ground in recent times, all make positive reading for City fans. They have a great record at Old Trafford, losing just once since 2012 in the Premier League on the ground. United have recorded the same number of wins as City over the last ten games between the teams (four apiece) but three of those wins have come at the Etihad.
More of a worry for United will be their somewhat stagnant form, which came to a head at the weekend when they were humiliated at Goodison Park by Everton. The 4-0 win for the Toffees could well have been considerably more and led to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer apologising to the United fans, while midfielder Paul Pogba declared the performance ‘disrespectful’ to United fans and the shirt.
The positive news for United is that Luke Shaw can return for the City game from suspension and there is talk of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer shuffling things around for the game, which could well make for an interesting line up come kick off time.
City have injury concerns over Kevin de Bruyne who seems to be ruled out with an unspecified muscular injury, but other than that City have a full strength squad to pick from, although it has to be said that their team has started to show signs of fatigue in some recent games. Even so, they are still producing the results and if anything, their away form has generally been better than their home over recent Premier League games.
This has all the ingredients of being a classic and a dramatic night of action in many ways and it should make interesting viewing.
Our Tip – These teams have not drawn a game in a long time and if that is the case and with both teams needing to win, I don’t usually tip a game to finish all square. However something tells me that this game is going to see one team leading and late drama ensue to ensure that we get a draw. The draw bet is a good value 4/1 shot with bet365.
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Arsenal
Wolves earned a good draw with Arsenal at the Emirates when the teams met in the league and that is just one of a string of good results that Wolves have picked up against top six sides including drawing with Manchester City, beating Chelsea home and away, defeating Manchester United in the league and cup, beating Tottenham on the road and beating Liverpool in the FA Cup.
However, since their FA Cup Semifinal defeat to Watford, it is fair to say that Nuno Santo’s men have gone a little off the boil and that could be good news for this Arsenal team who have an unwanted record away from home, having kept their first clean sheet in an away game this season last time they played on the road at Newcastle.
The Gunners are struggling with Chelsea, Spurs and Manchester United for that elusive Champions League qualification spot and their defeat at home to Crystal Palace at the weekend was a massive blow, especially seeing as all their key rivals either lost or drew.
As such, the Gunners need to produce the goods away in Wolverhampton on Wednesday and that is not going to be an easy task against a Wolves side that have made things very tough for the top six sides this season. There is no doubt that this Wolves side seem well capable of lifting themselves to face big opponents at any point in the season and Arsenal will be very wary of the threat of strikers Jiminez and Jota in particular.
Our Tip – Wolves have shown their capability to bounce back from a couple of indifferent results to put in a good display against the top sides in the past this season and I think they are well capable of doing the same here. Arsenal for me are not the most convincing as they showed in their result against Palace at the weekend and their away form is even worse. I think Wolves have the quality to get yet another big performance and three points from the visit of a top six side. Back Wolves to win at 9/5 with bet365.