Watford vs. Manchester United Betting Odds, Prediction, Preview: Underdog Can Keep it Close
Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images. Pictured: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer
- Manchester United is a huge favorite over Watford on Saturday morning in Premier League action.
- Brett Pund is targeting the underdog getting a goal, at plus-money to boot.
- Get his full Man United vs. Watford preview and pick below.
Watford vs. Man United Odds
|Man U Odds||-215|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-160 / +125)|
|Day | Time||Saturday | 10 a.m. ET|
|How To Watch||Peacock Premium|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Following a much-needed international break, Manchester United makes the trip to Vicarage Road to take on Watford on Saturday in a Premier League match between sides toward the bottom of the form table.
Both teams have combined for just two victories in their last six matches each, while posting a combined -12 goal difference over that span.
United enters the weekend sixth in the table on 17 points, with the Hornets sitting a spot out of the relegation zone in 17th place on 10 points.
In EPL league games, the Red Devils have won 18 of 26 (69%) games against Watford in their history, but their current form gives the hosts a great opportunity to buck the trend.
Aggressive Watford Can Get Forward
New manager Claudio Ranieri is coming off his second international break with his new club, and he’ll be looking for more cohesiveness to keep Watford in the English top flight.
Since he took over on Oct. 4, the Hornets only have the dramatic comeback win at Everton as the lone positive result to go with losses to Liverpool, Southampton and Arsenal.
Not much has changed in his team’s form over the four games, posting a -4.2 expected goals difference, according to fbref.com.
The Hornets do pose a threat going forward, with the trio of Ismalia Sarr, Emmanuel Dennis and Josh King combining for 10 goals and five assists in the league this season.
On the whole of the campaign, Watford ranks lowly in multiple statistical categories like xGA (20.5; 19th place), shots per match (10.36; 18th) and goals against (19; 17th) among the 20 teams.
Man United Still Hot Mess This Season
Once the schedule got tougher for United, the regression started to happen as Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s side only has the one win in its last six in the league.
The results don’t look any better in the advanced metrics, where the Red Devils have a -4 xG difference over that period to go with an expected goals against per match average of 1.98.
If Solskjær is looking to keep his job, he’s got to fix the issues defensively. United ranks in the bottom half of the EPL table in non-penalty xG against (1.59), big chances surrendered (16) and pressures per match in 17th place.
Things might not get better until French international Raphaël Varane returns to the backline from his lengthy injury. Midfielder Paul Pogba will miss out due to injury.
Offensively, all of the attention has been on the return of Cristiano Ronaldo, but his Portuguese partner Bruno Fernandes is also putting together a fine season with four goals and three assists.
Betting Analysis & Pick
The big question entering this match is whether this is finally the buy spot on Manchester United, with the visitors slated as -215 favorites on the moneyline at DraftKings to go with a total of 2.5 goals juiced at -165 odds.
I’m not ready to back United as this big of a favorite here, which is why my best bet for the game is to take Watford on the Asian Handicap of +1 at +105 odds.
Yes, the Hornets have been pretty bad, but you can make the argument that the visitors have been just as bad over the last month.
With the defensive issues I mentioned above, I think there’s a great chance for the hosts to score in this one, which will make it even harder for Solskjær’s side to win this by multiple goals.
You also have to think that United might be peeking ahead to the very important fixtures coming up, which includes the trip to Spain midweek to play Villarreal in the Champions League before games with Chelsea and Arsenal.
Watford will be scratching and clawing for every point, and with a veteran EPL manager like Ranieri having extra time to prepare for this game, I think the Hornets are a good bet to get something from this match.
Pick: Watford +1 (+105)