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Manchester United v Watford – Preview, Predictions and Best Bets

Manchester United v Watford – Preview, Predictions and Best Bets. United should rotate their squad but still have enough to beat Watford.

Man Utd host Watford at Old Trafford in the FA Cup third round on Saturday evening. The Red Devils last lifted the cup in 2016 under Louis Van Gaal. Watford made it to the 2019 final before being humbled 6-0 by Man City at Wembley.

Man Utd Form

Man Utd are in superb form in the Premier League though they lost their last match 2-0 to Man City in the Carabao Cup semi-final. In league action, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team have won eight of their last ten matches, drawing the other two.

That run of results has been based on an improving defensive record at home – three clean sheets in the last five – as well as four wins and a draw on the road. Their last league result saw a 2-1 win against Aston Vila through a Bruno Fernandes penalty winner and United sit in second place on goal difference with a game in hand over Liverpool.

Man Utd Team News

Man Utd are without Edinson Cavani for the final time as he completes a suspension in this match. Victor Lindelof overcame a back problem to start the Man City match and could partner Axel Tuanzebe.

Some serious rotation is expected for this game with all of Alex Telles, Nemanja Matic, Donny van de Beek, Mason Greenwood, Juan Mata and Daniel James looking like certain starters.

In goal, Dean Henderson played against Man City and should again get the nod here with David De Gea rested and only amongst the substitutes.

Man Utd Motivation

Solskjaer needs a trophy and will want to keep the FA Cup alive having being eliminated by Pep Guardiola in the Carabao Cup. An attacking approach is expected and many squad players will want to impress having seen their minutes dwindle in recent weeks.

Watford Form

After 22 Championship matches, Watford sit in 6th place, just three points off the second automatic promotion position. After just four months in charge, they sacked Vladimir Ivic and appointed Xisco Munoz in his place. The new coach won his first match at the helm at home to Norwich through an Ismaila Sarr strike before losing 2-1 at Swansea in his second match.

Watford have really struggled on the road this season, winning just one of their last eight matches away from home (D4, L3).

Watford Team News

Watford have two long-term injuries to deal with for this match with striker Isaac Success absent with a ruptured Achilles tendon and Tom Dele-Bashiru still months away after a serious knee problem. Left-back Adam Masina is just back from a long injury and is likely to be rested.

Some rotation is expected as the league and securing promotion is a much higher priority than a distracting cup run so Daniel Bachmann could replace Ben Foster in goal and Troy Deeney could get a breather up front. Will Hughes and William Troost-Ekong should both start, showing that The Hornets have some real depth on their bench to call upon.

Watford Motivation

This game is low priority and will be used to get squad players match fit and to rest some of the big hitters in the starting XI. Xisco Munoz is expected to take the game to Man Utd instead of sitting back in a low block as his side have nothing to lose and no desire to play extra time.

Key Stats

Man Utd have won 8 of their last 10 PL matches (D2)

Man Utd have scored 2 or more goals in 8 of their last 12 matches

Man Utd have conceded 20 goals in their last 12 matches

Watford have won 1 of their last 8 away matches (D4, L3)

Watford have lost their last 2 away matches

Watford have lost 6 of their last 7 matches against Man Utd


Man Utd should win this tie despite being likely to rest 8-9 players from the defeat to Man City. Watford are not expected to devote full attention to this tournament.

Best Bet: Man Utd win and both teams to score at 2.55

Alternative Bet: Mason Greenwood first goalscorer at 5.50

Alternative Bet: Man Utd to win by 2 goals at 3.75 or by three goals at 5.25

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