Soccer Picks: Manchester United vs. Wigan FA Community Shield

Nila Amerova

Thursday, July 18, 2013 12:00 PM UTC

Thursday, Jul. 18, 2013 12:00 PM UTC

The FA Community Shield, featuring Manchester United and Wigan Athletic, is tipped as a lopsided affair with the odds makers firmly in the Red Devils camp across the board.

Join us as we preview this intriguing matchup, a Premier League curtain-raiser, complete with soccer odds and free picks.

Man U without Fergie to lead them into this Community Shield fixture

Man U. will take on Wigan in the FA Community Shield at Wembley stadium on the 11th of August 2013. This match features the Premier League Champions and the FA Cup Winners, respectively and will mark David Moyes’ first competitive match as the new man in charge at the Old Trafford. In fact, one has to go back to 1985 for the last time that the Red Devils took to this fixture without Fergie standing on the sidelines.

Fergie’s legacy with Manchester United is well known. That he leaves behind big shoes for Moyes to fill, a manager he himself handpicked to take over is to state the obvious. Even more obvious is the fact that we are yet to see whether the shoe fits at all and how well Moyes will perform. Nonetheless, despite these reasonable question marks, the shine hasn’t come off Man U whatsoever in the markets. Case-and-point: Man U are installed as one of the top favourites to win the Premier League title  as well they are firmly ensconced as the firm favourites to win the Community Shield title at -450. Clearly, Moyes and Co. are expected to pick up from whence Fergie left off.

This overwhelming favouritism doesn’t stop just on the money line odds but extends throughout. Man U are listed as the -900 favourites to lift the trophy in the futures market and the hot favourites in every prop. The Over 2.5 appears to be the favourite result and that is listed at -188 and Man U to win both halves is tipped favourably at -163.

Such an overwhelmingly one-sided market suggests a Man U bet is an almost sure thing to come through and that in turn raises the question then: where is the value to be had?

Wigan’s fairytale ending to earn an encore performance?

The value is in Wigan Athletic rising to the occasion and making this match competitive, if not winning it altogether – not unlike their fairytale end to the season when despite facing relegation they beat massive favourites Manchester City to win the FA Cup. Short of a crystal ball though, predicting such an upset again, with any certainty, is impossible and, quite frankly, given all the recent movements in the transfer window – simply put, many Wigan players have absolutely no desire at all to play Championship football – it’s hard to fathom how with a skeleton team (or rather a different looking team that also will perhaps be less motivated than it was when it faced Man City in the FA Cup final) they might pull it off. No, it really looks like the Latics are a long shot bet and, thus, a futile pick to make.

Wigan striker Arouna Kone is purportedly being courted by Everton, Callum Macmanama is allegedly being seduced by both Everton and Sunderland; Aston Villa meanwhile appears keen on Shaun Maloney keen for Villa Park, while Arsenal is considering goalie Ali Al-Habsi amongst several others.

Now, Man U did receive a blow recently when Wayne Rooney returned from the pre-season Asian Tour with an aggravated hamstring injury that looks to rule him out for at least a month, including this match. Add to that the transfer rumours that persist where he’s concerned and there’s clearly some inside drama going on at the Old Trafford. Still, with or without Rooney, Man U has enough depth with star striker Van Persie and rising star Javier Hernandez, to name a couple. So long as all the agro and distraction surrounding Rooney doesn’t spillover into the locker-room, the Red Devils should be in top form for this all-important preview of their makeover under Moyes.

Football betting verdict

 Man U to win is the popular pick and we have to agree. Of course, it’s not a going to earn you much in return at -450. So to add value to this soccer pick , we are banking on the Over 2.5 at -188 as well as Man U to win both halves at -163. Furthermore, staying with the lopsided theme, were plumping down to a high-scoring affair – all Man U of course and to that end we like a 3-0 or 4-0 score line that is served up at +600 and +1000, respectively, at Bet365.

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