Prediction and odds: Manchester United (2/5) vs Burnley (6/1)
We’re backing Draw/Man United (HT/FT) at 10/3
When: Wednesday, 21st December 2022 – 8pm KO (GMT)
Where: Old Trafford
Argentina and France will meet in football’s greatest showcase on Sunday evening in the 2022 FIFA World Cup final.
As perhaps the biggest football club in the world, Manchester United will always feel some kind of responsibility to perform for their fans. So far this season, they’ve been on a bit of a rollercoaster ride which has left them hunting down a place in the top four of the Premier League. In terms of the League Cup, there’s no reason whatsoever they shouldn’t see it as a competition they can win.
Back-to-back friendly defeats over in Spain didn’t do much to lighten the mood at Old Trafford but prior to that, they were coming off the back of consecutive wins. They saw off Aston Villa 4-2 in the cup, just four days after falling to them in the league, before edging past Fulham. They may not seem like impressive triumphs, but it’s certainly a start for a team in desperate need of some consistency.
Burnley may have been relegated from the top flight last season but in many ways, you could argue it has served as a blessing in disguise. The Clarets have been playing some remarkable football under the guidance of new boss Vincent Kompany and as a result, they find themselves top of the Championship with the majority of pundits believing promotion back to the big time is inevitable.
A 5-2 loss at the hands of Sheffield United has been a strange blip on the radar for a Burnley side that has been able to score three goals in every single game since. They beat Crawley in the last round of the cup, they dominated rivals Blackburn, and then, they returned from the international break by putting both Queens Park Rangers and Middlesbrough to the sword in devastating fashion.
Our expectation is that United won’t be putting out a full strength squad given that the World Cup ended a matter of days ago. In equal measure, Burnley will want to try and make a statement – and make it through to the quarter-finals in the process.
We think it’ll be a tight and tense game with the visitors slowly trying to make some magic happen but ultimately, after 45 minutes of goalless action, the hosts will start to stretch their legs. It certainly isn’t going to be one-way traffic by any stretch of the imagination but United will do just enough in their first game back to inject a bit of confidence into their fanbase – something they desperately need after the recent Ronaldo saga.
Our tips (all taken from bet365): Draw/Man United (HT/FT) at 10/3 + under 2.5 goals at 13/10[geosnippet id=3620]
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