In a game hyped up as the biggest of the season, Man United’s performance at Anfield was in many respects, their most Mourinho-like performance so far. He picked a powerful, athletic side and smothered Liverpool’s attacking threat to leave with a point. Jose’s record away to top-six sides now reads W11-D11-L9 and 73% of those have had fewer than three strikes.
Meanwhile, Chelsea’s matches have seen goals, with seven of their eight fixtures finishing with at least three strikes. Necessity forced Antonio Conte into employing three at the back after Liverpool and Arsenal gave them the run-around and the tweaked system, one which Conte is very familiar with, has yielded successive victories accompanied by clean sheets. Their revival will be properly tested against United on Sunday.
The Blues only win in their last eight at home against a top-six side was Mourinho’s obligatory success over Wenger at the beginning of last season. Given United are around the same price here as they were against a red hot Liverpool team we think the hosts could be worth taking on. However, their W4-D4-L8 record on the road to top-six sides in the last three seasons doesn’t fill us with confidence.
Instead, we’ll look to ‘overs’, which may surprise a few. United are 7th, five points behind City and Arsenal so any more dropped points and they’ll face an uphill struggle to challenge for the title. Therefore, we think Mourinho will take a slightly more positive approach and test this new Chelsea defensive formation. 1.95 for over 2.5 goals looks good value considering it’s occurred in 12 of Chelsea’s last 15 at the Bridge.
Best Bet: Over 2.5 Goals 1.95