Manchester United v Saint-Etienne Betting: Defensive strength the key for Mourinho's men

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The red-hot Europa League favourites line up against the Ligue 1 side and our tipster expects the hosts to keep the visitors quiet at Old Trafford

Manchester United continue their Europa League campaign against Saint-Etienne as the knockout stage of the competition gets underway.

The men from Manchester qualified behind Fenerbahce from Group A but lead the outright betting at just 4/1 (5.0) and Jose Mourinho's men will be aiming to build a significant first leg lead at Old Trafford.

United will certainly come into the tie in confident mood, for they are unbeaten in their last 19 home games in all competitions and in 14 European ties on home turf - since Jose Mourinho's Real Madrid enjoyed a 2-1 win in the Champions League at Old Trafford in 2013.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic Manchester United

Unsurprisingly, United are chalked up as Betway's 1/3 (1.33) favourites to come out on top in this first leg tussle, while the odds compilers offer 15/4 (4.75) that Mourinho's side are forced to settle for a share of the spoils..

Saint-Etienne will be hoping to make history, for Manchester United have never been beaten by French opposition at home in European competition, but Christophe Galtier's side can be backed at 9/1 (10.0) with Betway to triumph.

The visitors are unbeaten in their last 10 matches in European competition, but United could be a tough nut to crack, for only Schalke conceded fewer goals than the hosts during the group stage. Furthermore, Mourinho's side have leaked just four goals in their last 10 matches - with two of those goals coming from the penalty spot, while one of the other two was an own goal.

Another solid defensive display from United looks a likely outcome and Betway go just 8/11 (1.73) that the visitors draw a blank in the first leg of this tie, while United can be backed at 10/11 (1.91) with the same firm to win to nil - a selection that would have paid dividends in each of Manchester United's last six victories.

GFX FACT MANCHESTER UNITED V ST ETIENNE

United have had trouble on their travels in this competition, having lost five of their last six Europa League ties away from home and, as such, they will be hoping to build a commanding lead ahead of next week's return leg. Betway go 7/5 (2.40) that the men from Manchester score more than twice, while the same firm offer 17/20 (1.85) that Mourinho's team win by more than one clear goal.

Better value, though, lies in backing United to win without conceding; the selection would have seen punters profit from three of United's last four games and, at 10/11 (1.91) , the price offers good value.

Manchester United to win to nil at 10/11 (1.91) for a 2pt stake with Betway
 

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