Manchester United vs. Sheffield United EPL Odds, Picks & Predictions: Lowly Sheffield Can Keep it Close
Phil Noble/Pool/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Manchester United star Marcus Rashford, center, takes a shot.
- Manchester United looks stay atop the Premier League table entering Wednesday's game against Sheffield United.
- Can the last-place Blades cause issues for the Red Devils?
- BJ Cunningham believes so and tells us why he likes the underdog below.
Manchester United vs. Sheffield United Odds
|Manchester United Odds||-385|
|Sheffield United Odds||+1050|
|Day | Time||Wednesday | 3:15 p.m. ET|
|How To Watch||NBCSN|
Manchester United looks to remain atop the Premier League standings Wednesday when it battles last-place Sheffield United at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils are on a torrid winning streak at the moment, winning 10 of their last 13 matches. In fact, they haven’t lost a league fixture since the first of November. With Manchester City and Leicester City right on its heels, Manchester United can not afford to drop points to the league’s worst club.
It’s been an extremely difficult year for Sheffield United, which has just one win on the season. The Blades have been a bit unfortunate with some of their results and injuries, but nonetheless are 12 points from safety at the moment.
At this point, Sheffield United needs every point it can get, but facing a giant like Manchester United might be a little too much to overcome.
Despite being in first place, the Red Devils’ underlying metrics have not been that dominant. Their xGD of +7.20 is fifth in the league, and they’ve allowed 1.42 xG per match, which is 13th best overall.
Manchester United’s offense is also not as good as advertised. It has taken advantage of set pieces, corners and penalties, as only 26 of its 36 goals have come from open play. In fact, the club is only averaging 1.24 xG per match from open play this season.
The Red Devils have been doing most of their damage against the bottom of the table, as they’re a perfect 7-0-0 against the bottom seven teams.
However, they haven’t been very dominant in those games, as they’ve only won by multiple goals once. In fact, Manchester United has just one win this season at Old Trafford that has been by more than a goal.
So, this match being a blowout isn’t a forgone conclusion.
The Blades’ campaign has been a nightmare. They’ve lost 16 of their first 19 matches, and have only five points as we hit the halfway point of the season. It’s hard to find many bright spots, with the grey cloud of relegation hovering over Bramall Lane right now, but they are not as bad as the results have shown.
Of their 16 losses, only five have been by multiple goals. In fact, on average Sheffield United is only losing by 0.52 xG per match and have the 17th-best xGD in the league.
The Blades also have been one of the best defensive teams in the league since Christmas, allowing only 0.84 xG per match. Two those matches were against Everton and Tottenham Hotspur.
So, the Blades are capable of shutting down Manchester United’s offense.
Betting Analysis & Picks
This is a classic matchup of one club due for positive regression and another due for negative regression.
The natural inclination when its first place versus last place is to take the league leader in a blowout. However, I think this match is going to be a lot tighter than expected.
Therefore, I am going to back Sheffield United’s spread of +1.5 at +108 odds.
Pick: Sheffield United +1.5 (+108)