Arsenal clash with Chelsea in the plum tie of the Capital One Cup fourth round and much has already been made of the fact that Arsene Wenger has yet to record a win over a side managed by Jose Mourinho.
Here we take a look at some of the less heralded trends from their past duels at the helms of London’s big-four incumbents and harness them for betting reward.
Despite their bouncing start to the season the Gunners are slight underdogs at 8/5, with their visitors 6/4 jollies and the draw after normal time 5/2.
All eight of our adversaries’ previous eight meetings under current management went under 3.5 goals.
Mourinho is a past-master of limiting Wenger-plotted attacking inclinations and his first meeting with Arsenal was the sole time they’ve scored more than once against his Chelsea.
That this latest meeting, in which the goalless-this-season Nicklas Bendtner and Demba Ba lead the respective lines, follows suit can be backed at understandably svelte odds of 9/20.
Six of our managerial foes’ eight past duels saw four or more yellow cards.
Past examples of Wenger/Mourinho face-offs have been competitive affairs and that could well be reflected in over 4.5 yellow cards being issued tonight, backable at 19/20.
Their last League Cup meeting in the final of 2007 saw seven yellow cards and three reds and with this game representing a psychologically important staging post on the way to the title shake-up expect a decent amount of needle once more.
Michael Essien has netted in two of the last three Wenger/Mourinho bossed clashes between the sides.
The Ghanaian may be a more peripheral figure at Stamford Bridge these days, but he stands a strong chance of starting alongside John Obi Mikel in the Blues engine room at the Emirates as Mourinho shuffles his stacked deck.
He’s 10/1 to bag at any time, but back in the 2006/07 season late equalisers were his thing in this fixture so the 28/1 about him scoring the last goal of the game must rate an appealing punt.