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Manchester United vs. Aston Villa Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews

07 January 2022

Old Trafford – FA Cup

Manchester United's Jadon Sancho has a shot blocked by Conor Coady during the defeat to Wolves

Source: Dave Thompson/AP/Shutterstock

The only FA Cup tie being played on Monday sees Manchester United host Aston Villa at Old Trafford. The Reds fell to their first defeat under interim manager Ralf Rangnick against Wolves last time out, and are at home to another Midlands outfit in this weekend’s football betting online.

Past Meetings

Kortney Hause scored a last-gasp winner as Villa beat United 1-0 at Old Trafford in the Premier League, although both managers that day, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Dean Smith, have since been relieved of their duties. Those two men were in charge when Villa claimed a 2-2 draw in Manchester in the first meeting between the clubs since the Villans returned to the Premier League in 2019, with United scoring eight goals in beating Villa three times in a row after that.

Team News

Scott McTominay and Luke Shaw are both available for United despite being banned for the Reds’ next Premier League fixture. Paul Pogba remains on the sidelines, while Eric Bailly has gone to the Africa Cup of Nations. Centre-backs Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelöf are both doubts, but Phil Jones is ready to play again after doing well in his first game in over two years last weekend.

Former Liverpool player Steven Gerrard returns to Old Trafford for the first time as a manager in the away dugout, with the Villa boss also having John McGinn and Tyrone Mings available despite Premier League suspensions. Ex-United man Ashley Young is a fitness doubt, while Ollie Watkins, Marvelous Nakamba and Leon Bailey are all set to miss out. Bertrand Traoré and Trézéguet are both on AFCON duty.

Manchester United vs. Aston Villa Preview and Predictions

If Manchester United interim manager Ralf Rangnick didn’t understand the scale of his task at Old Trafford before, he certainly does now. Amid reports of a divided dressing room full of disenchanted players, the Reds could use the positivity of a good FA Cup to lift the mood at Old Trafford.

Aston Villa will be keen to pile the misery on their hosts though, and there’ll certainly be plenty of motivation to do so coming from their bench. Gerrard has made a good start as Villa boss, although he did suffer his worst result since arriving at Villa Park last time out.

The 2-1 defeat away to Brentford was the first game Villa have lost against a team not in the Premier League’s top three since Gerrard took over, and was all the more disappointing given they took the lead and conceded late on. United’s defeat to Wolves, meanwhile, was even more disappointing.

Many of United’s players showed little interest, and the writing seemed on the wall in the second half after a short burst of attacking intent came to nothing. There’s none of the energy and dynamism associated with a Rangnick side, while patterns of play are non-existent.

There hasn’t been much time for United’s temporary boss to turn things round, and there’s not much of a turnaround to this game either. As such, Villa could prove excellent value for the win at 5.25. United are still the 1.62 favourites though, with a draw after 90 minutes priced at 3.80. That would take the game to extra time with the potential for penalties.

Recommended Bets

Aston Villa to win to nil at 9.75

United have been lacklustre offensively throughout most of Rangnick’s six games in charge, with Villa available at 7.50 to win by one goal and 14.00 for a 1-0 victory.

Man United to win from behind at 8.50

If Villa score much earlier than Wolves did on Monday, there would still be time for a United comeback. The Reds have produced plenty of those over the last year or two, including away to Villa last season, with a 2-1 home win priced at 8.25.

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