Man United favourites for derby despite slip

Manchester United have been installed as the bookmakers’ favourites for Saturday’s crucial derby clash with rivals City at Eastlands.

City are currently sat in fourth place in the Premier League following emphatic 6-1 and 5-1 wins over Burnley and Birmingham respectively, and have also suffered just one home league defeat all season.

United meanwhile slumped to a disappointing goalless draw at Blackburn last Sunday, leaving them four points behind Chelsea in the title race.

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Yet FourFourTwo's Paddy Power have made Sir Alex Fergsuon’s title-chasing side 6/4 favourites, with City, themselves currently battling with Tottenham and Liverpool for the fourth and final Champions League spot, priced at 17/10.

17/10    Man City
12/5      Draw
6/4        Man United

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Ferguson claimed on Friday that star striker Wayne Rooney may be back in contention for a place in the visitors’ side, with the 26 goal striker missing last weekend’s draw at Ewood Park with an ankle injury picked up in United’s Champions League clash with Bayern Munich four days previously.

With the 24-year-old scoring at Eastlands in both last season’s corresponding fixture and this year’s League Cup semi-final first leg, Ferguson will be desperate to unleash the PFA Player of the Year nominee on Roberto Mancini’s side again, particularly having looked so short of goal scoring options in his absence.

One of Rooney’s rivals for that PFA award, Carlos Tevez, will also be desperate to get on the scoresheet on Saturday.

Tevez left United for City last summer and has since become involved in a war of words with his former manager and Red Devils captain Gary Neville.

Rooney is 4/1 favourite to be the game’s first goalscorer, with Tevez just behind at 5/1.

Paddy Power, meanwhile, are offering odds of 11/5 on Tevez scoring more goals in the match than his former team-mate Dimitar Berbatov, who has come under fire in recent weeks for failing to score the goals to keep United top of the Premier League during Rooney’s spell on the sidelines.

First Scorers
4/1        Rooney
5/1        Tevez
11/2      Adebayor
13/2      Berbatov

Tevez v Berbatov Betting
4/7        Tevez and Berbatov score same amount of goals
11/5      Tevez to score more than Berbatov
13/5      Berbatov to score more than Tevez
6/1        Both score in the match

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City’s recent good goalscoring form, combined with the fact the reverse fixture witnessed seven goals as United sealed a thrilling 4-3 win thanks to Michael Owen’s 96th minute winner back in September, sees the odds of there being three or more goals scored in the match stand at 4/6, with the odds of five or more goals set at 4/1.