Manchester United vs Manchester City 2016 Prediction
The eyes of the footballing world will be squarely fixed on the Manchester Derby this weekend as long time rivals make acquaintances once again. No manager in the world has defeated Jose Mourinho more than Pep Guardiola. In 16 career head to head meetings, Pep owns a 8-5-3 record.
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But this weekend they will meet for the first time as managers both in the English Premiership, a land in which Mourinho has won 3 titles. Whereas when they faced off in El Classico, as Barcelona and Real Madrid's managers respectively, Pep had already staked his claim in Spain and it was Mourinho who was attempting to usurp the throne.
Every ounce of logic suggests that these two juggernauts will go down to the wire for this year's crown, which makes their head to head meetings all the more crucial and all the more likely that this weekend's encounter ends in a stalemate.
Manchester United vs Manchester City Prediction
BET DRAW @ +230 AT WILLIAM HILL. The Citizens will be without Talisman Sergio Aguero as he sits out, suspended for the next 3 matches. For United Luke Shaw, and Henrik Mkhitaryan are question marks, but the Red Devils should have their entire squad available as neither seems seriously hurt.
Both teams thus far have 100% records having mowed down inferior opposition in their first 3 games; not surprising as both managers are obsessed with winning and spare no detail to achieve it. However they go about it in very different ways. Pep, values the ball, and has insisted to his players that when they lose possession, they win it back within 6 seconds, thereby controlling the game from start to finish. Historically Mourinho doesn't value possession and will yield the ball to his opponents, keep a solid shape and wait to pounce on an opposition mistake.
Two seasons ago when Mourinho's Chelsea were cruising to the title, opposing fans would often chant "Boring, Boring Chelsea"; once he is in a favorable position Mourinho's tactic is to kill the game, not allowing his opponents to play. In response Chelsea fans chanted "Boring, Boring Champions"
Seeing as how neither manager can afford to blink first in this local rivalry, this game may see the pattern of Man City having the lions share of possession but United closing down their openings. But sitting back against such a capable foe is playing with fire. The big worry for City is that they won't have any physical match for Ibrahimovic or Pogba on the pitch. Man City, for all their beautiful football, lack grit without Vincent Kompany in the team and Fernandinho looks to be the only one willing get his cleats dirty.
Unless they can deny Pogba the ball they risk being bullied off the park. We may see Zlatan dropping quite deep into the midfield to start United's link up play and impose his presence.
Jose will encourage his men to be patient, keep their emotions in check, not give the opponent anything, and when the one chance falls to you - capitalize. But having seen Mourinho manage in big games like this for over 10 years, it ends in a tie too often and getting over a 2/1 return is hard to pass up. As this will likely be the first bet in a busy weekend let's look to clear two units profit on Saturday morning.
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