Football Tips: A belting 26/1 Bet Builder for Swindon v Man City on Friday

Our tipster Shane O'Brien anticipates a huge giant killing. Ah, who are we kidding?

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Manchester City’s rotten luck in the FA Cup continues with a trip to the mighty Swindon on Friday night. City have now drawn non-Premier League clubs in 11 of their last 13 pre-quarter-final FA Cup ties, so it is little wonder they have made at least the semi-finals in four of their five seasons under Pep Guardiola.

Friday 8pm: Swindon v Manchester City
TV: ITV and ITV Hub

Swindon are currently fifth in League Two and in a good place to earn an instant return to League One following their relegation last season. Ben Garner’s side are currently two points off the automatic promotion places and have a game in hand over third-placed Sutton United, while they have earned their place in the third round of the FA Cup with impressive away wins against Crewe and Walsall.

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Man City (-2)

Their FA Cup adventure is almost certain to come to an end on Friday night, however, against a City side that has been devouring all in its path over the past two months. City have won all 11 league games since losing to Crystal Palace in a shock home defeat at the end of October.

They have scored 31 goals in that 11-game spell and have emerged as the Premier League’s most lethal attacking force, surpassing a Liverpool side that seemed uncatchable in that respect just a few weeks ago. It seems almost inevitable that they will sweep Swindon aside on Friday night. We’ll kick off with Man City (-2) on the handicap.

Both teams to score

City currently have the best defence in the Premier League in addition to boasting the most ruthless attack, but there have been some signs of vulnerability over their 11-game winning run. Arsenal and Brentford both asked questions of the City defence in their two most recent games, while Leicester exposed some glaring deficiencies when they scored three goals in 10 minutes during a thrilling Boxing Day encounter.

Covid absentee Guardiola is also likely to rest some of his most trusted defenders on Friday night, giving Swindon an opportunity to test a relatively inexperienced defence just like Wycombe did in the League Cup in September in a 6-1 defeat. Swindon have scored a modestly impressive 34 goals in 22 league games, including five in their most recent game against Northampton. They could just nab themselves a consolation on Friday so Both Teams to Score.

Cole Palmer to Score Anytime

Cole Palmer has scored on both his League Cup and Champions League debut in a breakthrough season for Manchester City he’s got every chance of extending his goal-scoring record to another competition. City have reportedly rejected a loan bid from Newcastle for the talented young forward, who looks likely to be a replacement for Ferran Torres after the latter’s move to Barcelona.

He averages a shot every 30 minutes in his fledgling City career and will get plenty of opportunities in a game where City will dominate both possession and territory. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Palmer notch yet another goal in a competition debut on Friday night.

Over 11.5 corners

City have won a total of 95 corners in their last 11 Premier League games at an average of almost nine corners per match. They have won 50 corners in their last six games and have recorded ten corners or more in four of their last eight in the league.

Guardiola’s side dominate the ball in every game they play, recording at least 64% possession in every game across their 11-game winning run and recording at least 70% in six of their last seven games. There is no reason to think that Friday’s game against League Two opposition will be any different.

Such dominance of possession and territory tends to translate itself into a barrage of shots – in City’s case anyway. City have attempted a whopping 143 shots in their last seven games at an average of more than 16 shots per game.

It is almost certain that they will reach that average on Friday night and could break the 11.5 corner barrier by themselves. At the other end, City have conceded 33 corners across their 11-game winning run at a rate of exactly three per game, meaning Swindon stand a reasonable chance of winning a few corners of their own.

Swindon v Man City tips

Man City (-2)
Both Teams to Score
Cole Palmer to Score Anytime
Over 11.5 Corners

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