Manchester United and Liverpool meet on Sunday in a high-pressure clash that will have major repercussions on both sides’ hopes of a top-four finish in the Premier League.
However, two matches of equal import with regards to Champions League qualification will be contested a day earlier, with Manchester City hosting West Brom and Burnley travelling to Southampton.
Any points dropped by City or the Saints would be manna from heaven for the Sabbath combatants and there’s reason to suspect that the Baggies and the Clarets are primed to do United and Liverpool good turns.
A win double on the charges of Tony Pulis and Sean Dyche is 69/1, while its double-chance equivalent pays out at north of 8/1.
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Read on for the reasoning…
West Brom to beat Man City @ 9/1
It would take a brave punter to back a demoralised Citizens side in their current form.
They’ve won a mere three of their last 12 outings in all competitions, conspiring to lose to opposition of all calibres from Burnley to Barcelona during that mangy sequence.
Their opposition have kept eight clean sheets in 13 matches under Pulis, losing just three times, with two of those defeats coming in local derbies.
West Brom can pull off a similar heist to the one perpetrated by the Welshman’s former employers Stoke at the Etihad earlier this term, pairing determined resistance with pace on the counter attack.
That way they will be able to exploit Sky Blues sure to be fatigued mentally as well as physically from being given the runaround of all runarounds at Camp Nou on Wednesday.
Burnley to beat Southampton @ 7/1
The Clarets face an uphill battle for survival, but they’ll travel to the south coast knowing that they had what it took to best the Saints at Turf Moor earlier this term.
Sure to be brimming with positivity after downing Man City in Lancashire last weekend they will travel to a side that have been far more effective on the road than at home of late.
Southampton squeaked their way to a 1-0 win over Crystal Palace last time out at St Mary’s to end a five-game winless streak and a four-match goalless run in front of the faithful.
It was just their third win in 11 at home soil.