Soccer Picks Arsenal vs. Manchester United

Mike Richardson

Tuesday, February 11, 2014 4:16 PM GMT

Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2014 4:16 PM GMT

There was a time when Arsenal vs. Man Utd. would have been a six-pointer EPL title decider, but now it looks like things will just get better for one team and worse for the other. Find out what our handicapper has chosen as his soccer picks in this affair.

It was double woe this past weekend for the (usual) big guns in the EPL. Arsenal got well and truly spanked by Liverpool and Man Utd (the reigning champions) could only manage a draw with bottom of the table Fulham. Few people made much money on those scores, but that just means we need to win big on the midweek games.

Misfiring Gunners

Losing 5-1 to the (usual) “also rans” that are Liverpool asked some big questions of Arsenal’s title aspirations. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger insists the Gunners can still win the title, but the bookies have them at best soccer odds of 8/1, while Liverpool have improved to 14/1. That might sound illogical considering the number that Liverpool did on Arsenal on Saturday, but a game is only ever three points. Interestingly that 5-1 defeat at Liverpool was only the fourth time in Premier League history that Arsenal have conceded five goals (or more) in a single game, but it is the second time this season. Arsenal will look to restate their claim to the EPL title when they host Manchester United at Emirates Stadium on Wednesday.

If you want to know who will do better come May you should know that whilst Arsenal are third favourites with the bookies to win the league Man Utd are at 300/1 soccer odds to win it all (that’s 6th favourite and equal to a little team called Everton).

Before you rush down the bookies and back Man Utd doing a Liverpool and beating Arsenal 5-1 at a mouth-watering325/1, you should know that the bookie think Arsenal reversing that score is at (just) 80/1, while Man Utd’s David Moyes is at 16/1 (the same as Newcastle’s Alan Pardew and Villa’s Paul Lambert) to be the next manager to be P-45’d. Also as I said, three points is just three points and shouldn’t define a season, especially as the Anfield spanking was the Gunners’ first away defeat since the 6-3 drubbing by title rivals Manchester City at Etihad Stadium in December.

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Enough about Arsenal…WHERE’S THE MONEY MIKE?

An awful season got a little more awfuler for Man Utd on Sunday when Darren Bent scored an injury-time equaliser to earn Fulham a draw (and cost United 2 points). The game was a tad more one sided than the score would suggest as the Red Devils put in 81 crosses in the game, but just 18 found a team-mate, and “almost” doesn’t pay the (shoe) bills as Mrs Richardson says. Man Utd now sit nine points behind fourth-placed Liverpool.

Basically both teams need to win (but only one will)

Arsenal have only dropped points in three home games all season, drawing two and losing just once and they’ve outscored their visitors 22-6 (over 12 games) while Man Utd have lost a third of their games on the road this season.

Despite having a worse weekend Arsenal will bounce back stronger, and will be cheered home by their supporters. This is the best time to play Man Utd who have lost, not just their talismanic Manager but also their belief that they are owed three points from every game. We'll take Aresnal as the smart soccer pick for this EPL match-up.

Prediction: Arsenal win 2-1 available at best soccer odds of 17/2 with Paddy Power.

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