Liverpool face old foes Manchester United at Anfield on Sunday afternoon, and it is a certainty that at some point over the weekend, a former footballer turned useless pundit will lean back on his comfy TV couch and utter the phrase ‘You might as well throw the form book out of the window’. But that’s a dangerous piece of advice – particularly if said window is seven stories above a busy high street. While the atmosphere of derby day can bring an extra level of performance out of some players, the recent form and trends can still be a key measure to successfully predict the outcome and thus make a few extra quid from gambling on the result.
Here at the Paddy Power Blog, we can’t predict who you might stumble home with on Saturday night after an evening on the tiles, nor can we predict how your neighbours will react if you throw up in their rose bush on the way, but we do think we can come close to predicting the outcome of Liverpool v Manchester United, and the result is a not-so-ridiculous 35/1 punt.
[Handy hint: If you’re having to squint, click or tap on the image to enlarge it]
For the sake of argument we’ve looked at the last seven clashes between Liverpool v Manchester United at Anfield, and there are a number of key trends that stick out. Liverpool fans will be pleased to see that the Reds have won five of those seven games with United’s 2-1 victory in September 2012 their only win on the red half of Merseyside since 2007. Liverpool are 23/20 to pick up all three points if you fancy United’s misery in front of the Kop to continue.
Liverpool are a short 8/11 to score first in the tie, but that’s because they’ve done so in the last six meetings at Anfield, proving they’re sharper out of the blocks than an Olympic Sprinter on the ‘special kind’ of medication. Similarly it’s a short Evens for the teams to go in level at half-time, after there’s been nothing to separate the two sides at the oranges in five of the last seven meetings.
Unlike Rademal Falcao’s wage bill however, it’s not all bleak reading for Manchester United fans. Both teams have found the net in five of the seven meetings, meaning that the away side should at least have something to cheer. A suggestion bolstered by the fact that this seaosn Manchester United’s ability to equalise away from home is 62 per cent. Without cracking out the abacus, that basically means that LVG’s side have gone behind eight times on the road this season, but drawn level five times.
Taking all that into account, and a 2-1 win for Liverpool catches the eye at 15/2. For the more optimistic punter however, the half-time/full-time correct score of 0-0/2-1 is a 35/1 punt we’re more than happy to have a few quid on.
Then there’s Steven Gerrard. Liverpool’s iconic captain who will face Manchester United for the final time as captain of their fierce rivals. He has five goals in the last seven games against Manchester United and is 3/1 to score at anytime on Sunday.
The headline writers would have their Monday sorted if so.