MM’s weekend wager: United to beat City in Manchester derby thriller, as Wigan shock fellow strugglers QPR

By Dominic Claeys-Jackson

After tipping Chelsea to defeat Manchester United by one goal at 7/2 last week, the in-form MM Wager is back to help you beat the bookies.

Two Premier League matches involving Greater Manchester’s teams take place over the coming days – and what matches they promise to be!

It’s the Manchester derby on Monday, with champions-elect United looking to extinguish any tiny flame of hope City may have of overturning the 15-point deficit at the top.

Before that, however, comes the small matter of Wigan travelling to Queens Park Rangers on Sunday afternoon, in a proverbial relegation six-pointer.

With bragging rights and relegation spots at stake, here’s MM’s guide to both games, in what is sure to be a cracking long weekend of Premier League action.

Queens Park Rangers vs. WIGAN ATHLETIC, Loftus Road, Sunday 4.10

Queens Park Rangers (17/12, Pinnacle); Draw (17/7, Pinnacle); Wigan Athletic (9/4, Betfred)

Wigan will hope to continue their traditional end of season renaissance against fellow strugglers QPR – and the Latics are good value for an upset at 9/4.

Roberto Martinez’s side are in strong relegation-fighting form, losing just one of their last five away league games and winning two.

Meanwhile, second-bottom QPR continue to look good for the drop under Harry Redknapp, winning just one of their last seven home games, losing three.

Wigan, who beat table-propping Reading 3-0 last month, have enough to inflict further damage to another side that cannot afford to lose.

They have won their last three away games in all competitions, with an impressive goal difference of +9, and are worth backing at a decent price.

Paddy Power offer 6/5 in the draw no bet market which, if you prefer a touch more insurance, may be the best option with QPR certain to be pumped up.

With the Latics still not participating in a 0-0 draw this term and QPR conceding 14 in their last six, goals are easy to envisage.

The Londoners boast the league’s worst shot conversion rate (9.4%), but 21 shots in each of their last two league matches suggests they will net.

Despite being odds-on, both over 2.5 goals (20/21) and both teams to score (8/11) – quoted by Ladbrokes – are worth consideration.

For those who fancy Wigan to pile on the misery, an even better bet is an away win but with QPR to score (9/2, Coral).

More speculatively, Wigan to score between 46-60 minutes is 19/5 (Ladbrokes); interesting, given they have scored 31% of their 36 league goals this season during that period.

Finally, James McCarthy, who scored twice in the December reverse, is 7/1 anytime goalscorer and 22/1 first goalscorer (Ladbrokes).

Tip: Wigan to win NOT to nil (9/2, Coral)


Manchester United (13/10, William Hill); Draw (5/2, Bet365); Manchester City (5/2, Coral)

Manchester United are not often odds-against at home – so punters should take advantage by backing the league leaders to defeat City and virtually seal the title.

Unbeaten in 18 league games, winning their last seven, United are relentless; and also good value, given City have won just one of their last four away matches.

Despite a superb run of six clean sheets, the Reds should concede, however – and a goal-fest is likely given recent history between the two.

The last five games have produced 23 goals – an average of 4.6 a game – meaning the two clean sheet league leaders may struggle to contain one another.

Over 2.5 goals is 5/6 (Pinnacle), while over 3.5 goals is 21/10 (Bet Victor) and over 4.5 goals is 5/1 (William Hill) – over 3.5 goals provides the best value.

A just as good bet is United to win in a match of over 2.5 goals (40/17, 32Red), with 3-1 to United in the correct score market also appealing (18/1, Coral).

Meanwhile, both teams to score is 4/6 (888Sport), but United to win and concede (3/1, Coral) and United to win by two goals (11/2, SkyBet) are more attractive.

Neither of the two Manchester giants have lost when scoring first, but United have won five from six when conceding first at Old Trafford this season.

Although a City throwaway is unlikely, United’s comeback king status gives some appeal to them winning from behind (9/1, Paddy Power) or drawing or winning after conceding first (7/2, 888Sport).

Elsewhere, United are the only Premier League side yet to concede a penalty this term.

888Bet quote 9/1 that City score a penalty, with William Hill offering 11/4 for a penalty to be awarded to either side.

The two major interests in the goalscorer market are Robin van Persie and Carlos Tevez, who are both in contrasting form.

Van Persie has not scored in nine games, despite attempting 24 shots, while red-hot Tevez has netted six in his last seven.

United’s leading scorer is 7/4 to net anytime and 11/2 to score first (Bwin), with former Red Tevez 12/5 to score anytime and 7/1 to score first (Stan James).

Van Persie is 11/4 (Paddy Power) to score in a United win, if you fancy him to break his considerable duck in a home victory.

Tip: Manchester United to win in a match of over 2.5 goals (40/17, 32Red)

Double: The Wigan Athletic and Manchester United win double is worth a go at 13/2 (Bet365)

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Image courtesy of Yahoo UK, via YouTube, with thanks.

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