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Manchester City are only 12 points clear atop the Premier League table, yet I felt the need to check when the earliest they can win it would be. So for all that it’s only 12points – and four games’ worth of results – they may as well be handed the trophy now because of the ease at which they’re seeing off all of their rivals.
This week should further reinforce the idea that it’s only a matter of time as they take on Manchester United in a few days’ time, but first comes the challenge of Wolves. They’re not having the season you’d believe them to be having, or the one you expected them to have based on 2020 – they’re slap bang in the middle of those perceptions.
For all that they showed signs of competing in the top half in 2021, they’re currently 12th with very little to play for. But the one thing they do have in their favour is form and a lack of pressure. These things don’t often correlate but in Wolves’ case, it’s been a bit of a perfect storm.
They’re unbeaten in five and haven’t conceded more than a single goal in a Premier League game in over six weeks. Is this easy for City? Here’s a Bet Builder while you find out.
Tuesday 20:00 – Man City v Wolves
BT Sport 1
This is hardly worth explaining in full, but it does act as the basis for the way I believe the game will go.
The enjoyable thing about this game of football is that a loss is of no detriment to Wolves, but attempting to win the game at the very least acts as a means to bridge their morale into the derby against Villa at the weekend. However, when teams open up against City, that usually leads to them winning games of football.
Wolves’ commitment to the cause will be the reason they’ll be in this game as long as I expect them to be, rather than any hope they have of getting past the Stones/Dias partnership.
As City gradually impose themselves on the game in search of a winner, it will inevitably come – it just might take longer than we’re used to. After all, this Man City aren’t showy; they’re structurally sound and consistent. Goals come in time rather than in bunches.
It’s here where the value to this Bet Builder lies. As titles appear on the horizon, the psychology of winning football games changes and you begin to play the run-in rather than the opponents on a given week.
As much as we enjoy the useless cliché of ‘one game at a time’, it’s not relevant anymore and players naturally have eyes on the prize. They’ll prevail, but it’ll only be after some tinkering and a touch of inevitability sets in for the visitors.
He looked sharp last week, didn’t he? His pace always helped him to some degree, but it’s the runs across the front post or the instinct of knowing exactly where to be that’s made him as successful as he is.
I suspect he’ll mark his return with a goal here – finding a crucial strike as he always has done for them in the past.
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