Arsenal vs Manchester United Pick, Odds: Expert Prediction on Massive Clash
Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images. Pictured: Eddie Nketiah of Arsenal
Arsenal vs. Manchester United Odds
|Manchester United Odds||+320|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-125 / +100)|
|Both Teams to Score (Yes/No)||(-143 / +105)|
|Odds via bet365. Get up to the minute soccer odds here.|
Arsenal hosts Manchester United in a massive top four clash between the two hottest teams in the Premier League.
The Gunners secured a famous 2-0 victory in the North London Derby last weekend at White Hart Lane to go eight points clear of Manchester City at the top of the table. Mikel Arteta has his team in fantastic form coming out of the World Cup break, but Manchester United is the only team that has beaten Arsenal in the Premier League this season, so the Gunners will no doubt be out for revenge.
Manchester United continued their winning run and stole a 2-1 win over Manchester City in the Manchester Derby. However, a late stunner from Michael Olise ended Manchester United's nine-match win streak. The Red Devils have been doing a lot of damage against good competition at Old Trafford, but can they do it away from home? That remains to be seen.
Arsenal Playing Incredible in Unique Ways
Arsenal was very impressive against Spurs early on and did something I think will be very key in this match, they attacked Tottenham in the wide areas.
Arsenal is not going to fall into the same trap as Manchester City and, as they’ve done recently against Newcastle and Tottenham, will create overloads in the wide areas to isolate Manchester United where they are weakest — their fullbacks. Oleksandr Zinchenko is going to be massive in this match because Arsenal loves to build out through the back. Meanwhile, that flank is weak defensively for United.
A masterclass performance. Zinchenko might be the buy of the season. pic.twitter.com/nOI1i4y0UZ
— AFC GLEN (@AFC_GLEN) January 17, 2023
The Arsenal defense has just 11.04 xG from open play in 19 matches and is only allowing 0.79 npxG per 90 minutes this season. In fact, Arsenal are the number one team in the Premier League in big scoring chances allowed and have allowed just one in their past seven matches.
The Arsenal attack has been amazing this season and Thomas Partey has been a big reason why. He is by far the best defensive midfielder in the Premier League and he allows Granit Xhaka to get forward and create overloads in attack, which frees space up for all the other Arsenal attackers.
Martin Ødegaard, Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka are about as dangerous as it gets with a trio of attacking midifielders. The three combine to average 1.68 xG + xA per 90 minutes, and none of the three are above a 0.30 xG or xAssist per 90, which shows how evenly distributed their attack is.
MARTIN ODEGAARD FROM DOWNTOWN!
— NBC Sports Soccer (@NBCSportsSoccer) January 15, 2023
Manchester United Missing Key Man
Manchester City repeatedly tried to build through the middle of the pitch against Manchester United, but Erik Ten Hag’s side did a great job of staying compact. As a result, Manchester City was able to exploit United in the wide areas. However, the Red Devils did an outstanding job defending their penalty area.
Casemiro is out for this match because of a yellow card suspension. He was inserted into the starting lineup for the Everton match on October 9th and since then, United is only allowing 0.80 xG per 90 minutes. Before Casemiro was regularly starting, Manchester United was allowing 1.58 xG per 90 minutes.
Manchester United did win the last meeting between these two, but there was a questionable VAR overturn and the expected goals battle was essentially even (1.5 Manchester United to 1.3 Arsenal). The Red Devils did a great job of exploiting Arsenal in transition, but Arsenal was without Partey, who is the main reason why Arsenal is the best defensive transition team in the Premier League. Arsenal is allowing the fifth-lowest opponent build up percentage and the second-fewest progressive passes + dribbles per 90 minutes in the Premier League.
Arsenal vs. Manchester United Pick
Manchester United has had success against the big six, but all of it has been at Old Trafford. Manchester United has played and beaten Liverpool, Tottenham, Manchester City and Arsenal at home. They’ve only played two matches against the Big Six away from home and got pasted 6-3 by Manchester United and needed a stoppage time goal to beat Chelsea. Arsenal, on the other hand, has a +11.7 xGD in eight home matches this season in the Premier League.
Arsenal is going to have a rest advantage with Manchester United playing Wednesday against Crystal Palace, so this a great spot for Arsenal at a fairly short price.
I have Arsenal projected at -141, so I love the value on the Gunners at -125.
Pick: Arsenal (-125)