Watford v Manchester City: Citizens concede, Citizens win

Raheem Sterling
Will Raheem Sterling start his fourth league game in a row?
  • Watford vs Manchester City
  • Sat 4 Dec, 17:30

A City win with goals at both ends and lots of corners for the visitors at Vicarage Road is the way to go here in the late Saturday game, says Jamie Pacheco...

"City have won each of their last three games 2-1 (PSG, West Ham, Villa) while Watford have lost their last two matches, while scoring in the process."

Hornets need to snap out of it

If the league ended tomorrow, Watford would have been clear of relegation by three points. They'd bite your hand off for it to finish then.

But three points can disappear very quickly and right now, they're on a poor run. They've lost four of their last five and the one they didn't lose was a 4-1 victory over Manchester United, who have since sacked their manager. That tells its own story.

A good Christmas period and they'll have some much-needed breathing space but a poor one and they could well become the latest side to be in the drop zone at Christmas and subsequently at the end of the season.

Still, they went toe-to-toe against an excellent Chelsea side in midweek and only lost by a single goal. They matched them for possession, shots on and off target and probably deserved a point.

Emmanuel Dennis scored in that 2-1 defeat, his third goal in three games.

Key players return for Guardiola

Another game, another win. This time it was a somewhat hard-fought 2-1 win at Aston Villa.

What was impressive was that they've had a bad run in terms of injuries and those who did play must have been feeling a bit fatigued.

On the day it was Portuguese duo Bernardo Silva and Ruben Dias popping up with the goals. As it happens, was right about Silva scoring but Joao Cancelo's assist never came; instead it was Dias who scored a goal.

Pep Guardiola arms 1280.jpg

Raheem Sterling started his third league match in a row which suggests he's either back in favour or that Pep Guardiola didn't have much choice but to play him. But he might get a rest here with Jack Grealish and Phil Foden returning.

Ikay Gundogan should be back too after a knock but it's too soon for Kevin de Bruyne.

Watford can score in City win

This is a happy hunting ground for Man City.

These are their last four results away from home against the Hornets: 0-5, 0-6, 1-2 and 0-4. Things were hardly better for the men in yellow when they were on the road. Last season they got beat 8-0 at the Etihad in the league and the season before that 6-0 in an FA Cup tie.

So, it really has been one-way traffic.

It's hard to see anything but a City win, here. But then again, that's nothing that a price of 1.232/9 on Guardiola's men isn't telling you anyway.

But if that price isn't the sort to be tipping up in a column of this nature, then what about the far, far bigger 2.915/8 that City win, whilst conceding?

City have won each of their last three games 2-1 (PSG, West Ham, Villa) while Watford have lost their last two matches, while scoring in the process.

Bernardo-silva-1280.jpg

In this sense, the goalscoring form of Dennis could be vital. But then again, any Watford goal would do us.

Go high on City corners

Unsurprisingly for a team that has so much possession, creates so any chances and scores lots of goals, City get lots of corners.

Here's their corner count away from home this season, most recent first: 10, 9, 6, 4, 13, 8 and 11.

That means they passed the 8.5 corner count four times out of seven, which curiously is considerably more often than at home (1/7). In their last three visits to Vicarage Road they got eight, 12 and 11 respectively.

You can get 7/5 that City get over 8.5 corners. The stats are in our favour and given this is a side in 17th, you'd think City will have plenty of possession again. Let's hope that leads to lots of corners.

Bet Builder comes to 7.99

That man Dennis has been making headlines for his goals but he's certainly no angel when it comes to getting bookings. He may be a forward but he's picked up six yellows in 13 games. The 3/1 he gets another looks big.

And rather than going with City to win and goals at both ends, you can get a slightly shorter 6/5 on both teams scoring.

The double comes to 7.99.

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