FA Cup Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions for Leicester City vs. Manchester United (Sunday, March 21)
Matthew Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images. Pictured: Manchester United standout Paul Pogba.
- Two of the Premier League's best teams meet Sunday when Leicester City and Manchester United battle in the FA Cup quarterfinal round.
- The Foxes, who will be without James Maddison, face an opponent set to miss some key attackers as well.
- Matt Trebby explains why he's targeting the total as his top below.
Leicester City vs. Manchester United Odds
|Leicester City Odds||+200|
|Manchester United Odds||+135|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-125 / -105)|
|Day | Time||Sunday | 1 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||ESPN+|
|Odds as of Saturday afternoon and via BetMGM.|
Two of the top three Premier League teams face off Sunday in an FA Cup quarterfinal match, as Leicester City looks to pursue more silverware when it faces a Manchester United team hoping to continue a strong run of results.
The Foxes have thrived in England’s top flight under manager Brendan Rodgers, with the hope of returning to the Champions League next season.
After blowing their top-four spot late last season, Leicester City sits in third place and eight points ahead of West Ham United entering Sunday’s matches, although the Hammers have a game in hand they’ll play earlier in the day against Arsenal.
Let’s dig into both teams and see where the betting value lies.
There are two versions of Leicester City. There’s the team with midfielder James Maddison and the one without it.
The Leicester City team without Maddison plays with three center backs and is focused on beating opponents on the counter attack. With Maddison controlling the game from the center of the pitch, the Foxes play with more possession and look to break down opponents.
Maddison has been out due to injury since a Feb. 21 match against Aston Villa and will miss this matchup. The hope is he’ll be back after the upcoming international break.
Fortunately for Leicester City, it’s coming off an impressive 5-0 victory over Sheffield United, although no one has had too much trouble with the Blades this season. Sheffield United, which is going to be relegated, was no match for Leicester City in defeat. The Foxes won the expected-goals (xG) battle by a 4.55-0.09 xG margin, according to Understat.
Against Manchester United, Leicester City will likely continue to play with three center backs and fullbacks Ricardo Pereira and Timothy Castagne bursting down the wings. Jamie Vardy and Kelechi Iheacnacho will be fed, with hopes of getting in behind the Red Devils’ defense on the break.
The Red Devils, currently in second place in England’s top flight, have been pretty bland over their last seven matches, of which they have drawn four of them. However, their last four games have featured some impressive results.
According to FBref.com, Manchester United has registered more than 1.00 xG just three times in its last seven contests. After three consecutive 0-0 draws against Real Sociedad in the Europa League; and, Chelsea and Crystal Palace in the Premier League, Manchester United beat Manchester City and drew AC Milan in Europe before getting a pair of 1-0 wins over West Ham and Milan.
The win over Milan was inspired by the halftime introduction of Paul Pogba and a lackluster attack from the Italian side. Pogba scored three minutes into the second half, and Milan didn’t create much to really threaten the Red Devils the rest of the way.
Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjær was noncommittal on whether Pogba would start this match after a stellar 45-minute cameo in Milan. Solskjær also said Marcus Rashford would likely miss the match after being taken off in Pogba’s place Thursday, although he hoped to have Edinson Cavani and Anthony Martial available for selection.
Betting Analysis & Pick
For me, this comes down to team selection. If none of Cavani, Martial and Pogba start, Manchester United will be relying on Bruno Fernandes to feed Mason Greenwood and Daniel James going forward. That is incredibly uninspiring against an opponent that thrives on the counter, especially with Vardy.
Given the lack of fitness going forward for the Red Devils and the Foxes preference to play on the counter, the total is the best way to go in what has all the ingredients to be a 1-0 win for either side.
Also, the under has been popular in the FA Cup since the start of the fifth round. Since then, seven of 10 cup fixtures entering Sunday have gone under 2.5 goals, including a pair of 1-0 wins for these clubs in the previous round.
The best number for under 2.5 goals can be found at BetMGM at -105 odds. We’ll back a tense cup tie between two sides that will be missing key attacking talent from the start.
Pick: Total Under 2.5 Goals (-105)