By Danny Carrington
Last Updated: 10th January 2020
Super Sunday concludes with Manchester City’s visit to Aston Villa as both sides look to continue their good form after positive results in the Carabao Cup in midweek. We’ve taken a look at the best bets for the Villa Park encounter.
Smith’s Villa struggling for consistency
Aston Villa’s form figures of LLWLW in their last five matches paints a pretty clear picture of how things are going for them in the Premier League at the moment. Inconsistency is blighting their campaign as they seek to retain their league status, particularly at the back where they’ve shipped 37 goals already and have only kept four clean sheets. The return to fitness of Tyrone Mings is a big bonus and that was shown by their encouraging showing at Leicester in the Carabao Cup, where they were good value for their 1-1 draw.
However, manager Dean Smith must be concerned that his squad is looking rather threadbare with the news that goalkeeper Tom Heaton and striker Wesley will be on the injury table for a prolonged period of time. You’d imagine Smith will be keen to get reinforcements in during the January transfer window, particularly given Villa’s precarious position in the table.
The home side have won just three of their 49 Premier League encounters against the reigning champions, losing their last 11, and they are 14/1 to stop the rot on Sunday.
League looks of secondary importance for Pep
Given Manchester City could start this one as many as 17 points behind runaway leaders Liverpool, you’ve got to think Pep Guardiola’s attentions will begin to turn to other things as the season goes on. The Champions League is clearly a priority for the City hierarchy and you’d expect the league teams to be weaker once the competition restarts next month. Pep will clearly know that it would be one of the biggest shocks ever if Liverpool surrendered their lead, but the only thing he can do is keep his side winning matches and see where that takes them.
City have won four of their last five in the league, with that damaging loss to Wolves in late December the only blot on their copy book. They were at their imperious best for the first 45 minutes against neighbours Manchester United in midweek, with Bernardo Silva’s bullet shot the highlight. They dropped off a bit in the second-half, but look good value to make their way to the final as they seek a third consecutive Carabao Cup.
City should be far too good
Though Villa were fully deserving of their draw in midweek, it’s very hard to look past Pep Guardiola’s side here. As mentioned, City have won the last 11 meetings between the two and they’ve kept a clean sheet in eight of their last 10 versus the hosts, so backing them to win to nil at 23/20 looks a decent bet.
If you’re looking for a bit of a juicier price, Sergio Aguero, hunting for the goal that will equal Thierry Henry’s record of 175 in the Premier League for a non-English player, has scored six in his last four league starts against Villa. He’s 13/5 to score first and 12/5 to score two or more, while he’s 10/1 to score his 12th league hat-trick.