The battle for European places continues in Saturday’s lunchtime kick-off as Arsenal host Manchester United at the Emirates Stadium (12.30pm; TV: Live on BT Sport). Both teams are chasing that final Champions League slot and this is a vital fixture in terms of that particular target.
A humiliating defeat at the hands of Liverpool in midweek leaves United’s top four hopes in the balance. They may have announced a new manager in Erik ten Hag, but there is work to be done before he joins in the summer. Arsenal have also been on a poor run, losing to Crystal Palace, Brighton and Southampton before unexpectedly beating Chelsea 4-2 away from home.
While the momentum is with Arsenal, form is mixed in both camps so let’s now see what the bookies make of Saturday’s game. Keep reading for our betting tips and full preview.
There are odds against figures on all three possible outcomes so there is the potential for a good return if we can make the correct call. With the benefit of home advantage, Arsenal start as favourites at a general 6/5. Our favoured bookmakers are finding it hard to split the remaining options with both the draw and a victory for Manchester United on offer at 5/2 in places.
Form is weak in both camps. That loss to Liverpool on Tuesday night means that Manchester United have taken just seven points from their last six matches. Arsenal will be more confident, having won at Stamford Bridge on Thursday night but they are faring slightly worse with six points from their last six.
It may all point to a draw here but, before we commit, let’s take a look at the players who can have the final say.
Cristiano Ronaldo starts as the favourite to open the scoring. There’s no firm indication that he will return to the United squad following his family tragedy so it’s advisable to check the team sheets before committing to his odds of 9/2. Arsenal’s Alexandre Lacazette is next at 5/1 and then it’s back to Manchester United for Edinson Cavani at 6/1.
Behind the main front men, it could be worth considering two Arsenal players who were on the mark in that Chelsea game. Eddie Nketiah scored twice on Thursday and he is available at 7/1. Further back, midfielder Emile Smith Rowe notched the second for the Gunners and he is quoted at 17/2.
Away from individual player betting, Both Teams to Score can be claimed for Saturday’s fixture at a general 4/6. Those that want to consider the ‘No’ option on BTTS will find it at a top price of 5/4.
In the Total Combined Goals betting, a modest option would be to take Over 2.5 goals which is currently available at 10/11. By pushing that a step further and taking Over 3.5, the numbers climb to 11/5 in most places.
Alternatively, if you’re expecting a dour 90 minutes at the Emirates on Saturday, a stake Under the 2.5 goal line will return a top industry price of Even Money.
That leaves us with some suggestions for the Correct Score market. Those who are edging towards a share of the points can consider a 2-2 final scoreline at best odds of 14/1. Meanwhile, a 2-1 win for Arsenal is quoted at 15/2 while the same result in favour of Manchester United is on offer at a top price of 12/1.
Our AFC vs MUFC Preview’s Betting Tips Verdict
Taking recent form into account, the obvious conclusion might be that these teams will cancel each other out. The draw is certainly a tempter.
If we’re focusing on the side markets, what about the goals tally in either camp? Across their last six Premier League matches, Manchester United have scored eight times while conceding a notable 14 times at the wrong end of the pitch. Both Teams to Score would have converted in four of those six games.
Over at Arsenal, that 4-2 result at Stamford Bridge goes against their overall trend. In their last six matches, the Gunners have found the net on six occasions while conceding ten. Both Teams to Score would have dropped just twice.
With Champions League football on the line and both sides needing the win, we suspect that there will be a more attacking mindset on Saturday. Arsenal and Manchester United also have porous defences so we’re expecting plenty of goals too.
The bookies don’t necessarily agree but, if we are correct, those 11/5 odds on Over 3.5 goals will prove to be generous. This preview will start with that pick: You could add in Both Teams to Score at 4/6 for a potentially safer option but we’ll finish with the draw.
Two sides who have been underperforming in recent weeks have the capacity to cancel each other out in what should be an entertaining 90 minutes. So these are our two advised betting tips: