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Premier League: Saints Travel to The Champs with Damage Limitation in Mind


Premier League: Saints Travel to The Champs with Damage Limitation in Mind

Manchester City vs Southampton

It’s Manchester City versus Southampton part two – this time in the Premier League!

Fresh from their League Cup meeting in midweek, it’s the second clash in four days between the club with seemingly unlimited resources and the one which regularly has been forced to sell its best players to survive.

The SBOBET Premier League betting odds point to a one-sided victory as the champions welcome the south coast’s finest to the Etihad Stadium.

Talking Points

As Premier League news goes, the Saints have been making headlines for all the wrong reasons of late.

They were the victims of a 9-0 demolition by Leicester City a week ago – a match which inflicted the Saints’ biggest ever defeat as an English league side in all competitions.

The result was the joint highest in Premier League history, matching Manchester United’s 9-0 win against Ipswich in 1995.

However, it was the manner in which Southampton performed after being reduced to 10 men early on which must most have concerned boss Ralph Hasenhuttl and Saints’ supporters.

While they are a couple of points better off than at the same time last season, they appear in danger of being dragged into another relegation fight.

They can certainly up their game as they have already shown this season against City’s Manchester rivals but know a meeting with the back-to-back champions will be an altogether different proposition.

In fact, Southampton probably realise anything they gain from this encounter is a bonus and this may well be a damage limitation exercise before the focus on winning football matches begins in earnest the following week.

Certainly, City cannot afford any further slip-ups as they trail league leaders Liverpool by a big margin – six points – and must not risk the possibility of that gap increasing.

They should certainly expect lots of the ball.

In midweek, Southampton showed close to zero intent. This is likely to be exactly the same.

In many ways, with confidence so vulnerable, who can blame them?!

History

Traditionally, this has been an evenly matched contest.

City have 35 wins to Southampton’s 31 with a further 25 meetings ending all square.

However, Pep Guardiola has won six and drawn one of his seven matches against Southampton since taking over as boss in 2016.

Last season, City enjoyed a double triumph.

They turned on the style in this corresponding fixture in a 6-1 rout in which an early own goal opened the floodgates before Sergio Aguero, Leroy Sane, Raheem Sterling (two) and David Silva found the net. Danny Ings netted the Saints’ consolation.

In the return fixture over Christmas, two goals in as many minutes fired City to a 3-1 win with Silva and Aguero again on target.

It meant City had won five consecutive games against Southampton for the first time.

You have to go back to May 2016, just before Guardiola was appointed, to the last time Southampton beat City.

That was 4-2 when a hat-trick from Sadio Mane caused most of the damage to a City side in the middle of a two-legged Champions League semi-final.

Southampton last won at City in their first ever match at the Etihad Stadium.

That was in the league in 2004 when two goals from Kevin Phillips and one from James Beattie sealed a 3-1 win. Nicholas Anelka was the City marksman.

Betting Tip

Total Goal 2-3 @ 2.65

Has a team ever been so much an outsider than Southampton are in this one?

Their 1X2 odds are a staggering @ 30.00 compared to the hosts @ 1.085. The draw is available @ 8.75.

Even First Half 1X2 has City @ 1.37, Southampton @ 10.00 and the draw @ 2.38.

With Asian Handicap betting, there is the chance to back the home team -2.75 @ 1.87 and -3.00 @ 2.20.

That tells its own story, as does Southampton + 2.75 @ 2.06 and + 3.00 @ 1.76.

Over 4.00 goals @ 2.03 and total goal 4-6 @ 1.90 have probably never been as lowly priced.

Nor will total goal 0-1 @ 7.00 have been so high either, one suspects.

A repeat scoreline from the midweek meeting – correct score 3-1 – @ 11.50 – will tempt some, while there isn’t even a bet available on Double Chance or Draw on City.

So, how can I go for anything other than a home win, yet one that will pay out a worthwhile sum?

I expect City to win but perhaps Southampton’s damage limitation approach will work.

After all, it’s always hard to break down a side of fellow professionals if they are well drilled enough.

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

 

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