Pete Nordsted: Backing Aston Villa to turn their fortunes around and a low scoring Manchester derby

Betting expert Pete Nordsted is backing Alex McLeish's side to get at least a point and a tight game at Etihad Stadium in the potential Premier League title decider
This Monday night sees a titanic clash when current champions Manchester United make the short trip to Etihad Stadium to take on rivals Manchester City in a game that will in all probability decide the destination of the Premier League title.

For Roberto Mancini's side the equation is simple, this is a must-win game and they do have an excellent home record, picking up 16 victories in 17 home games this season only dropping points to Sunderland.

Alex Ferguson's men come into this game having dropped vital points at Wigan and at home to Everton last Sunday. However, if any side is equipped to take on the pressure then it is United who have proved season after season that they are more than capable of crossing the finishing line victoriously.

For this game I am basing my findings on how both sides have performed in the past against similar opposition and if this is anything to go by we should not expect a goal-fest.

In five previous league clashes at Etihad Stadium there has never been more than one goal scored and indeed there has been one or less goals in five of Manchester City's last seven at home to similarly graded sides. This has also been the case in four of Manchester United's last eight away games against the top graded teams.

This then makes the 10/3 (4.33) for Under 1.5 goals with Bet365 look like outstanding value. For those more conservative Under 2.5 goals can be backed at 43/40 (2.08) again with Bet365 and this looks a strong option.

The above stats make the 'No' option on the both teams to score market look strong as again this has been seen in the previous five meetings on the blue side of Manchester and in six of the host's last seven home games against top tier sides.

The 'No' option on both teams to score can be backed at 5/4 (2.25) and again this offers value. I will put my faith in what has gone on in the past and look to back Under 2.5 goals at 43/40 (2.08) with Bet 365 as my main selection and advise that value hunters do the same.

Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish has come under fire this week as his side lost at home to fellow strugglers Bolton and although a couple of weeks ago Villa looked safe they are now very much embroiled in a fight for Premier League survival.

This weekend they make the short trip to the Hawthorns to face bitter rivals West Brom who would love nothing more than to increase the pressure on McLeish’s side.

Before we start writing Aston Villa's epitaph it should be remembered that their recent away record to teams of the Baggies' grading reads; won two, drawn seven, lost one. This therefore makes Aston Villa +0.25 goals on the Asian Handicap at 11/10 (2.10) with Bet 365 look tempting and this will be my second selection for the weekend.

Pete's weekend tips

Selection One
Selection Two
Manchester City v Manchester United – Under 2.5 at 43/40 (2.08) with Bet365 West Brom v Aston Villa – Aston Villa +0.25 goals at 11/10 (2.10) with Bet365

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