Manchester United might be in the middle of a defensive crisis but they are still favourites to see off the challenge of Tottenham at Old Trafford this evening.
The reigning champions have lost first-choice centre-back pairing Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand through injury as well as right-back Rafael, meaning Jonny Evans is likely to partner Phil Jones in central defence with Chris Smalling and Patrice Evra either side of them.
But even without the wise heads of Vidic and Ferdinand to help guide young keeper David de Gea through his first Premier League game at Old Trafford, United are 53/100 favourites to win the tie.
Meanwhile, a draw is priced at 3/1 in bwin’s 3Way football betting market, with a win for Tottenham in their first Premier League match of the season priced at 5/1.
United’s status as favourites is based on a number of factors, not least because Old Trafford was something of a fortress last season.
The Red Devils won all but one of their home games in the 2010-11 campaign, scoring more goals on their own territory than any other Premier League team in the process.
Key to this record was their performance in the first half, where they scored 26 goals and conceded just one.
This suggests punters should consider betting on United to be winning at both half time and full time at odds of 5/4.
A successful £25 free bet on Man Utd to be winning at half time and full time, available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account, would return £56.25.
With the Red Devils having won eight of their last nine meetings against Spurs and scored at least two goals in five of the last six, this also points to a Man Utd win.
Man Utd to score 1.5 goals in the match at odds of 11/20 is the obvious bet on the back of this, although it does not offer the most attractive returns.
Neither does a bet on both teams to score at odds of 67/100, which looks a good option given United’s defensive problems and the fact Spurs are on good goalscoring form having beaten Hearts 5-0 in the Europa League last week.
For those looking for a big win, the best bet could be on United to win by two clear goals, as they have on four of the last five occasions, at odds of 11/4.
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