Manchester United will look to get back to winning ways in the Premier League when they host Southampton at Old Trafford on Tuesday night.
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Leicester’s shock 3-1 home loss to Leeds United on Sunday kept Manchester United second on the table, just three points off of their neighbors Manchester City, who have a game in hand. The Red Devils’ hopes of a title were dented following a 2-1 home loss to basement club Sheffield United and a dour goalless draw at Arsenal on Saturday.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were left to rue the missed chances to win the game in north London, with both Cavani and Marcus Rashford guilty of missing glorious opportunities. However, it is that home loss to Sheffield that really threw a spanner in the works as Man City fully capitalized to take control at the summit of the table.
United’s poor record at Old Trafford has been their Achilles heel this season and Solskjaer will demand a response from his charges given the tough upcoming schedule that could make or break their season.
Southampton have not won in the league since edging Liverpool out at the start of January, losing each of their last three to Leicester, Arsenal, and Villa. This terrible run has seen them drop down to 11th on the log, a far cry from the promising start that had them flirting with the top four for long stretches.
The Saints felt hard done by against Villa, with two key VAR decisions going against them. First, an early appeal for a penalty after Matty Cash appeared to block Stuart Armstrong’s shot with his arm. Then a Danny Ings equalizer in injury time ruled out when VAR adjudged him to have been marginally offside.
Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side will need to put that behind them and try and cause United some problems at Old Trafford where they have looked vulnerable, having lost four times already this season, a sharp contrast to their stellar away form.
This is not an easy game for United by any stretch of the imagination. Despite Southampton’s poor form, they have shown on more than one occasion that they can go toe-to-toe with the league’s top teams. With both sides looking to shake off some disappointing recent results, we can expect an open-ended encounter. Recent meetings between these two teams have served plenty of goals and we do not see this being any different. We fancy Over 2.5 goals to land @ 1.61 for our initial betting tip.
Despite the Red Devils drawing a blank at Arsenal, they did create plenty of chances which they just failed to take. With their neighbors City throwing down the gauntlet to the chasing pack, the pressure is on United to come up with the goods at home to keep their title hopes alive. They have the quality within their rank and file to do that. All that remains to be seen is whether they have the mental strength for a title run-in. We’ll finish off by taking United to get the win here @ 1.45.
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