Will the Red Devil’s Unbeaten Run Continue Against Watford?

Last updated: February 9, 2017 by Leon Marshal

Game details

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Kick-off: Saturday, 3.00pm
Venue: Old Trafford
Coverage: Talk Sport
Home form: WDDDW
Away form: LDDWW
Last season: Man Utd 1 – 0 Watford
Competition: The Premier League

An interesting matchup awaits us at Old Trafford this weekend, featuring two teams that will be looking to rise up the table. Manchester United could see themself jump two places into 4th, should both Arsenal and Liverpool lose, while a win for Watford would see they move upto 9th, should West Ham draw or lose.

Manchester United are on the longest unbeaten run of any team currently in the Premier League. Despite this fact, the Red Devils sit in sixth positon, just outside the top 5 and seemingly having little to show for their form. The problem has been the number of draws it seems. They’ve lost just three matches this term, but they’ve also drawn nine, with twelve wins from 24 games demonstrating why they are not up there at the top. The last performance against Watford is hopefully a sign of the future though as United set off on a kind run of fixtures that see them face just one team in top 8. Zlatan Ibrahimovic is still scoring and Henrikh Mkhitaryan is finally showing the form that earned him his big money transfer over the summer. If United hit the ground running here, they could be unstoppable.

Watford’s up and down season shows no signs of stopping any time soon. After being without a win in five, they registered back to back wins, and will go into this match knowing they’ve already beaten Manchester United once this season. The hornets have a good record against the big boys, adding a recent win against Arsenal to the victory against United earlier in the year. Coach Walter Mazzarri has come under pressure this season for the mixed bag of results, but Watford are sitting in a good position, and after some January signings, look well set to challenge to keep their place inside the top 10. M’Baye Niang scored and assisted in his second match for the Hornets and will be the main source of danger for the United defence.

Team News

Wayne Rooney picked up an illness earlier in the week, though is expected to be fit by the weekend.

In the United defence, Phil Jones is still suffering from a foot injury that kept him out of the last match, while Marcos Rojo has a knock, though should be available for selection.

New signing M’Baye Niang made an almost instant impact with a goal an assist in last week’s match against Burnley. He is expected to lead the line alongside Troy Deeney again.

In the Watford midfield, Nordin Amrabat and Roberto Pereyra are out injured, although Amrabat may recover in time to be available for selection.

Expected line-ups:

Manchester United (4-2-3-1): de Gea, Valencia, Bailly, Smalling, Rojo, Mata, Herrera, Pogba, Mkhitaryan, Rashford, Ibrahimovic
Subs: Martial, Lingard, Carrick, Blind, Young, Romero, Fellaini
Injured: Jones
Doubtful: Rojo, Fosu-Mensah, Rooney
Not available:
Watford (4-4-2): Gomes, Cathcart, Kaboul, Prödl, Holebas, Capoue, Behrami, Cleverley, Niang, Deeney, Zárate
Subs: Britos, Success, Doucouré, Janmaat, Watson, Okaka, Arlauskis
Injured: Pantilimon, Pereyra
Doubtful: Kabasele, Amrabat
Not available:

So far this season

. . .
Manchester United this season Watford this season
6th League Position 10th
5 (7) (at home) Wins (away) 5 (3)
4-1 vs. Leicester Biggest win 4-2 vs.West Ham
6 (3) (at home) Draws (away) 3 (3)
0-4 vs. Chelsea Biggest Defeat 1-6 vs. Liverpool
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (15) Top scorer Troy Deeney (7)
Wayne Rooney (5) Assist Leader José Holebas (4)
Y59, R3 Discipline Y52, R1
4 Failures to score 7
9 Clean Sheets 4
14 Both Teams to Score Games 15
10 Over 2.5 Games 13
14 Under 2.5 Games 11
  • Manchester United are on a fantastic unbeaten run of fifteen premier league games. During this run, they’ve failed to score just once and kept five clean sheets.
  • Watford have ended a bad run with back to back wins, including the surprise victory against Arsenal. They also inflicted a shock defeat on Manchester United earlier in the season, showing that they often pull out results against the big teams.
  • United’s home form is actually worse than away however. They’ve won just five at home, compared to six away, although it should be noted they have been beaten just once at home, against local rivals Manchester City.
  • Watford have the worst disciplinary record in the league with 68 points acrrued, two more than second placed West Ham. Their last match against Burnley saw the hornets pick up five yellow cards.

Head to Head

Last 5 meetings between the two sides
Date Competition Game Result First Goal-scorer
18/09/2016 Premier League Watford 3 – 1 Man United Capoue 34′
02/03/2016 Premier League Man Utd 1 – 0 Watford Mata 83′
21/11/2015 Premier League Watford 1 – 2 Man Utd Depay 11′
14/04/2007 FA Cup Man Utd 4 – 1 Watford Rooney 7′
31/01/2007 Premier League Man Utd 4 – 0 Watford Ronaldo 20′

Conclusion & Betting Tips

Manchester United’s form suggests they won’t beaten in this match and there’s little to suggest otherwise. The bookies have priced accordingly, with no value in a straight win for the Red Devils.

We really fancy United to hit the ground running, despite Watford’s improved form. With this in mind, a half time/full time bet on Manchester United at around 8/11 at bet365 has a strong chance, so admitedly the value is fairly low.