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Watford vs. Manchester United Predictions, Betting Tips and Previews
20 December 2019
Sunday 22 December
Vicarage Road – Premier League
Watford are desperate for points as they are stuck at bottom place in the Premier League, but a hungry Manchester United visit the Hornets this weekend. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men are withing touching distance of fourth placed Chelsea, whilst Watford’s fall from last season’s grace have left them with a massive job in the second half of the season.
Manchester United are not the ideal opponent for a struggling Hornets side, as they have only won three times in 25 meetings between the two. Watford are on a run of five consecutive defeats against the Red Devils and the last meeting at Vicarage Road ended in a 2-1 win for the visitors. Romelu Lukaku and Chris Smalling scored the goals for United, but both of them have moved on for pastures new and found a new challenge in Serie A, respectively with Inter and Roma.
Watford have left the pitch without scoring only twice in the last six games against the Reds and will be hoping to get on the scoresheet again this weekend. The last fixture at Old Trafford ended in a 2-1 win for United, when Andoulaye Doucoure scored a late consolation goal for the guests after Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial had given United a 2-0 lead.
Danny Welbeck has been out for large parts of the season but could be able to make it to get a run out against his former club. Watford’s new coach Nigel Pearson had to start with a game against Liverpool and now they will face Manchester United, but he shouldn’t have any major issues in his squad. Both Kiko Femenia and Abdoulaye Doucoure are on four yellow and one away from being suspended.
Paul Pogba was back on the training ground this week and will hope to get a run of games during the festive programme, as Solskjaer is hoping to have Eric Bailly back from a knee injury on Boxing Day. Nemanja Matic was back in the Europa League, but has been missing from the first XI through an unknown injury and Diogo Dalot is suffering from a problem in his groin. Timothy Fosu-Mensah could also be back soon, when Aaron Wan-Bissaka needs to be careful against the Hornets, as he is on four yellow cards, one away from a one-match ban.
Watford vs. Manchester United Preview and Predictions
Man Utd are currently sixth in the Premier League after being held for a draw against Everton at Old Trafford last round, they are coming from a mid-week fixture against Colchester and may be backed at 1.80 to beat bottom-placed Watford on Sunday. The home side may be backed at 4.25 and a draw stands at 3.90.
Solskjaer’s Red Devils are unbeaten in six league games and will be confident ahead of the match against Pearson’s team. Despite having drawn three of them against teams they normally should overcome, they are looking like a threat to both Tottenham and Chelsea in the Premier League again.
There’s only three point up to Chelsea before this weekends round and Man Utd might have the superstar Paul Pogba back in their midfield. The coach admitted that they haven’t learned how to cope without the French World Cup winner, as they missed his creative touch in the 1-1 draw against the Toffees last Sunday.
Watford are in desperate need of points themselves and captain Troy Deeney was sad that Pearson had to start his reign as manager for the Hornets with a game against the league leaders. It doesn’t get much easier in his second and despite being at home, Watford will have to dig in to get away with something against a very well organised United side.
The guests have been looking rather sloppy at the back, though, and yet another defensive mistake cost them the match against Everton. The Reds haven’t kept a clean sheet since 1-0 win against Leicester at Old Trafford 13 rounds ago. The streak of 12 consecutive games where they concede goals might cause some concern for Solskjaer in the battle of Champions League football next season.
The start to the season has left them trailing Liverpool by 24 points after 17 games in the Premier League, but they are still only 10 points behind Manchester City on third. But, seeing as Watford haven’t scored in three games, this could be an interesting affair where none of the sides would like to drop any more points before Christmas.
Total amount of goals Over 2.5 at 1.80
During the last six matches between the two sides, only two of the games have ended with two goals or less and Manchester United’s inability to keep a clean-sheet might make this game a high-scoring match. Expect the away side to create a lot of opportunities and a punt on Over 2.5 might be backed by Watford being confident to end their recent goal drought.
Man Utd to win and both teams to score at 3.35
Even more interesting is the odds for Man Utd to win the match and both teams to score, as the last time the home side went three league matches without scoring a goal came between April 13 and 30. They need to bounce back immediately and might have an improved performance, as they also showed signs of hope against Liverpool. They will probably score against a sloppy United, but the away side should win the match.