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Aston Villa vs. Manchester United Odds, Picks, Prediction: Back the Red Devils in Premier League (Jan. 15)

Aston Villa vs. Manchester United Odds, Picks, Prediction: Back the Red Devils in Premier League (Jan. 15) article feature image
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Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images. Pictured: Manchester United star Cristiano Ronaldo.

  • Aston Villa hosts Manchester United on Saturday, with the Red Devils favored on the road.
  • The Red Devils have been hugely inconsistent in the Premier League, but they match up well against Steven Gerrard's Villa.
  • Anthony Dabbundo breaks down the matchup and makes his betting pick below.

Aston Villa vs. Man United Odds

Aston Villa Odds +180
Man United Odds +150
Draw +255
Over/Under 2.5 (-115 / -105)
Day | Time Saturday | 12:30 p.m. ET
How To Watch NBC | fuboTV | Peacock Premium
Odds updated via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.

Manchester United and Aston Villa meet for the second time in six days on Saturday at Villa Park after the visiting side eliminated the hosts from the FA Cup on Monday at Old Trafford.

Villa might have lost the cup match away from home 1-0, but there was a controversial VAR decision that ruled out an equalizing goal for Villa in what was a relatively even game after a strong early start from United. The market has moved against United in the lead-up to this game, despite some positive team news regarding injuries to Cristiano Ronaldo, Harry Maguire and Phil Jones.

Villa could see the debuts of Philippe Coutinho and Lucas Digne — the club’s two January additions — in this game, although Coutinho lacks the match fitness currently to start and is much more likely to come off the bench. They’ve lost three consecutive matches in all competitions and are hitting the first rough patch under new manager Steven Gerrard.

United has struggled to really turn things around since firing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and replacing him with Ralf Rangnick, but this price is showing a lot too much love to Villa.

Offensive Regression Coming for Aston Villa

Villa’s attack has some regression coming in the future and has been more fortunate than not in the time since Gerrard took over. Villa for the season is running about 0.3 goals per 90 minutes ahead of its expected numbers and since Gerrard became manager in November. Since Nov. 7, Villa has created 0.92 xG per 90 and turned that into 1.25 goals per 90 minutes.

While most of the attention will be on the set of injuries facing United, Villa is really short-handed in the midfield without Marvelous Nakamba and John McGinn.

I’m also lower on Coutinho’s impact than most given his lack of defensive work offered in the past and the importance Gerrard places on players who defend. A double pivot of Jacob Ramsey and Douglas Luiz already has problems with both ball winning and ball progression, which means Coutinho might struggle to fit right into this team, especially in his first start.

Digne could make more of an impact with his crossing ability form the left, but it’s unclear whether he has the match fitness to play a full 90 minutes at the moment after he fell out of favor at Everton.

Villa’s attack also sits just 18th in NPxG per 90 minutes created, 19th in big scoring chances produced and will have a hard time progressing the ball up the field effectively without McGinn in the center of the park. United, for all of its transitional flaws, still possesses a top five defense in both box entries and crosses allowed into its own penalty area.

Ronaldo Among Man United Injury Concerns

When these teams first met at Old Trafford, United managed 27 shots from without creating a single big scoring chance until a penalty. The Red Devils had plenty of possession and took a lot of shots from range but failed to break through a sturdy defense of Villa.

If you take away the xG from Bruno Fernandes’ stoppage time penalty that was missed, United won the expected-goals battle by just a 1.6-1.2 margin despite outshooting Villa, 27-7, in the game.

There’s some uncertainty with the health status of Ronaldo, Maguire and Jones, but Rangnick said that all three were able to fully train ahead of the match, so you’d expect them to play in the match and start. Luke Shaw and Scott McTominay are suspended, which means we’ll likely see Nemanja Matic in midfield and Alex Telles as a left back, both of which are clear downgrades from the starters who play in front of them.

United’s 4-2-2-2 formation matches up with Villa’s likely 4-4-2 approach in this game and enables them to set up effective pressing traps on the wings without being overrun in the midfield like they were against Wolves at home when United lost 1-0 last week.

Betting Analysis & Pick

Manchester United was still able to produce 27 shots in the first meeting despite one of its lowest pass completion percentages of the entire season. Both teams are very different now with different managers but Aston Villa still lacks the consistent attack and while its defense is improved under Gerrard, the Villans aren’t in a spot where they should be near a Pick’em against United.

My projections make Manchester United at -135 odds on the Draw No Bet line and anything -120 or better I’d play them despite its recent poor form. The market has moved too far toward Villa in this spot and United isn’t that short-handed when it comes to its lineup.

It’s time to buy back on the steam against Manchester United that’s happened most of the week ahead of this matchup.

Pick: Manchester United — Draw No Bet (-120 or better)

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