Man Utd v Basaksehir
Live on Sky Sports Main Event
Red Devils seek revenge
There are no red flags in the stadium but plenty are still being raised over Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s ability to take Manchester United down the right path.
They’ve already had a trio of home howlers in the league, losing to Crystal Palace, Spurs (6-1!) and Arsenal. And they were fortunate to be on the right end of some controversial decisions in the narrow 1-0 home win over West Brom.
Sometimes it seems a Bruno Fernandes penalty is their only route to victory.
And yet, at other times under Solskjaer – both this season and last – they can really turn it on.
That Jekyll and Hyde nature has already shown itself in this Champions League group.
United opened it with a statement 2-1 victory away to group favourites and last year’s beaten finalists PSG. And then came a 5-0 home rout of last season’s losing semi-finalists RB Leipzig.
It seemed the Red Devils were making light work of a very tricky group but then came another banana skin and they skidded onto their backsides.
That was their first encounter with Tuesday’s opponents when strikes from Demba Ba and Edin Visca were enough to give the Turks a shock 2-1 win.
United still top Group H on goal difference but another slip here could make them extremely vulnerable.
Turks tame on the road
Just like United, Basaksehir have 13 points in their domestic league although they’ve played a game more.
Away from home, the Super Lig table shows them with two wins and three defeats.
It’s probably of far more use to bring up their record in Europe – and it’s not good.
The Istanbul side have lost their last three away games in European competition, failing to score in the last two. That was a 3-0 defeat to FC København in August and a 2-0 reverse against RB Leipzig in October.
They prop up the group but there’s a scenario where all four teams could end Tuesday night on six points.
That would be a victory for Basaksehir in Manchester and PSG scoring a home win over Leipzig.
United’s dodgy home record suggests they’re iffy betting material and yet here’s a thing… Solskjaer’s men have won their last six home games in European competition by an aggregate score of 20-1.
That’s an astonishing difference to what they’re churning out in domestic competition and doesn’t make an awful lot of sense on first glance.
United struggle more when asked to make the pace but surely that’s what they have to do in European home games a lot of the time. All rather strange.
However, football has has a long history of teams struggling in the league but finding some freedom in the cups and that could be in-play here.
Perhaps the more measured pace of the game suits United more in Europe and they certainly have the players to unlock Basaksehir repeatedly.
So…let’s not mess about because United can’t afford to take it easy in this group. A convincing United win is certainly a realistic scenario so I’m going to head to the handicaps and play Man Utd -2 at 2.01/1 and Man Utd -3 at 5.59/2.
Over 2.5 Goals is the warm favourite at 1.548/15 but it’s a fair guess that Basaksehir won’t contribute to that tally.
Even though my bets obviously need three goals from Manchester United, I won’t be playing this market at such short odds.
Over 3.5 at 2.447/5 doesn’t really float my boat either.
In the Both teams to Score market, the betting is closer, with ‘Yes’ 2.0421/20 and ‘No’ 1.910/11.
Bruno Fernandes is averaging better than a goal every two games since pulling on the red shirt of Manchester United.
He took his tally to 19 in 34 outings with the winner against West Brom.
United earn an awful lot of penalties so there’s every chance that could be his route to another goal.
However he scores, the Same Game Multi offers Fernandes to score in a United win at 2.71 and that seems a straightforward way to try and make some profit.
Marcus Rashford in a United win is 2.09.
Five of Marcus Rashford‘s nine goals for Manchester United in the UEFA Champions League have been scored after coming off the bench – indeed, the only player to score more goals for the club in the competition as a substitute is current manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (7)