Thursday, 7.45pm, BT Sport 1
The final match in this round of the FA Cup will see Derby County welcoming Manchester United to Pride Park on Thursday night. Wayne Rooney (and his piratical, red beard) will be the main focus of attention here but with both teams on a good run of form they’ll both be confident of advancing to the next round. We’ve had a look at the markets to find a decent Same Game Multi.
Derby have played 14 matches since the turn of the year and have scored in 13 of them. They have a similar record when playing at home; of their last 15 matches at Pride Park they’ve scored in 14 with only Millwall keeping the Rams scoreless. Their Championship position of 13th is largely down to two bad runs they had during August and November/December when they couldn’t buy a win. Since the end of December though, they’ve lost just three matches from 15.
Man United went through a bit of a bad run there where they couldn’t find the back of the net on their travels, going scoreless in five matches from 10. Since then though, of their last five on the road they’ve scored in all five, netting 11 times.
Looking at a BTTS bet though, are both teams conceding? Of Derby’s last 10 home matches they’ve conceded in 8/10, while for Man United of their last 10 away matches, they’ve conceded in just 5/10 so this bet is a little risky, but with home advantage and a great scoring record we think this will come in at 8/11.
Derby County have scored 60% of their league goals this season in the first half, a stat that’s a little unusual in English league football as the vast majority of teams tend to score most of their goals in the second half of matches. However, of their five most recent home matches, they’ve only scored first-half goals in 2/5 matches.
For Manchester United, it’s a similar story. Also a little unusual, they’ve scored 57.2% of their league goals in the first half of matches and in their five most previous away matches they’ve scored at least one first-half goal in 5/5. Indeed, they’ve scored nine first-half goals, scoring just two second-half goals in those five matches. We’re going with Man United to Score Over 0.5 First Half Goals at 8/15.
Rooney’s been a class act since returning to England with Derby. He’s taken on that Paul Scholes/late Steven Gerrard role of controlling matches from deep in the Derby County half and spreading play in an attempt to open teams up. He’s been particularly good at home for the Rams and that touch of class he has on the football field has raised everyone’s game at the club. Also, that red beard makes him look like a pirate and that’s only a good thing. More pirates in football would be a mighty thing.
He’s been scoring a few since his return as well, three goals in 11 in the league for Derby and one in three in the FA Cup. Before he moved to Man United from Everton he faced off against United six times and never scored. In what will probably be his last chance, we think he’ll get one against his former club. Wayne Rooney to Score Anytime is 16/5.
*All odds correct at time of publication