Football tips: Ronaldo the key in this Norwich v Man Utd 27/1 Bet Builder

Our tipster Andrew Beasley can't see past an away win at Carrow Road.


* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.

Manchester United have recent experience of playing away against a newly promoted team who wear yellow shirts. It did not go well for them.

Having seen the team beaten 4-1 by Watford, the hierarchy at Old Trafford finally did what everyone else aside from Gary Neville would have done months ago and gave Ole Gunnar Solskjaer the boot.


But United are only one of the five Premier League clubs who appointed new managers last month, with their next opponents one of the others who made a change.

Dean Smith has made a positive impact at Norwich, with a win, two draws and their only loss a 3-0 defeat at Tottenham where the scoreline flattered their hosts somewhat. Smith even referenced xG after the Spurs game on Match of the Day 2, what a ledge. Even so, it’s a tall order to take on a United team who seem to have mysteriously got their act together since they fired a manager who failed at Cardiff (as did my mate with his law degree).

Saturday 5.30pm: Norwich v Manchester United
Sky Sports Premier League & Main Event

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Manchester United to win

The most notable difference in the post-Solskjaer era is that United have tightened up at the back considerably.

In their last five matches they have conceded just four goals, the same as in Ole’s final stand at Vicarage Road. One of the recent goals was a penalty and one was the weirdest goal you’re likely to see this season when David de Gea was lying prone having been taken out by Fred.

And for all that Norwich have improved since the start of November, goals have still been hard to come by. The Canaries have only scored eight in the league this season, and it’s very hard to see how they can hurt United, particularly as the latter have largely stopped shooting themselves in the feet.

As the Red Devils have scored in every away league game this season, something only three other teams in the division can say, they will have too much for Norwich and will win the match.

Under 2.5 goals

While Norwich have taken some hefty beatings on the road this season, at home they’ve been relatively sound in defensive terms. Only Liverpool and (weirdly) Watford have scored more than twice at Carrow Road in 2021/22 (and that stat includes Norwich, by the way). The Canaries kept clean sheets when Wolves and Brighton came calling, and those teams are far closer to United in the league table than the top three sides currently are.

With the visitors having scored more than twice in only one of their last 10 matches, they don’t appear to have the form or fire power to hand out a heavy beating. The Red Devils should win but probably only just, so opt for under 2.5 goals here.

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First goalscorer: Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo has always been accused of being a flat-track bully, but you don’t get to 801 career goals without rattling in a few against dross like Arsenal and Tottenham. As Burnley and Newcastle play on Sunday (and would need to lose by double figures to sink to the foot of the table in any case), Norwich will start this match at the bottom of the Premier League pile.

This will leave Ronaldo licking his lips, which is a horrifying image but handy from a betting perspective. He has scored 17 of his 486 league goals against teams in 20th position and in seven of the 13 matches in question he broke the deadlock with the opening goal. Ronaldo can do the same here to put United on the road to victory.

Over 11.5 corners

With two teams who haven’t received many cards being refereed by a man who loves to give them out (Darren England), it makes sense to leave that market alone and focus on corners. It looks a much safer option. There have been at least 12 corners in five of the seven league matches at Carrow Road this season, and United have reached that number in six of their seven away from home.

Those trends look set to continue. Only two teams have blocked more shots than the Canaries so far this season and good luck finding anyone who loves a speculative effort more than Ronaldo. Put those two factors together and it looks like over 11.5 corners is a great shout for this game.

* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.

Norwich v Man Utd Bet Builder tips

Manchester United to win
Under 2.5 goals
First goalscorer: Cristiano Ronaldo
Over 11.5 corners

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