Three side bets for Sunday’s big match


Sunday’s Premier League clash between Liverpool and Manchester United is arguably the biggest game between the clubs for over a decade. United are top of the table by three points, with champions Liverpool in second and, even though Manchester City are title favourites on the Exchange at 1.768/11, nothing quite captures the imagination like Liverpool v United.

You can read the thoughts of Betfair Ambassador Dimitar Berbatov, who once scored a hat-trick in this fixture, find out why Stephen Tudor thinks the home side hold a significant advantage, and read a dedicated match preview later in the week.

You can also listen to the new episode of Football…Only Bettor where the team go in-depth to find the best betting angles on the match.

But here are three side bets from the #OddsOnThat markets on the Betfair Sportsbook. You’ll notice that some contradict each other, but this is all in the name of a bit of fun and trying to find plausible(ish) outcomes at long odds.

For four years United fans have been asking if the real Paul Pogba – the one who starred for Juventus and France – would please stand up. In recent weeks that’s what happened, with Pogba driving the team on, inspiring the players around him and scoring crucial goals. Fans of a certain vintage will remember that a mercurial Frenchman was the catalyst for United winning their first title under Sir Alex Ferguson in 1993. Could Pogba perform the same trick this season?

There’s a long way to go but I like 200/1 on Pogba scoring two and Jordan Henderson picking up a card. United have had a few two-goal Anfield heroes down the years, including Diego Forlan in 2002 and Juan Mata in 2015. Pogba scored a brilliant brace away to Man City three years ago, so he’s done it before in a big game for the Red Devils.

United have been awarded six penalties this season while poor old Liverpool have only received five. Klopp’s men have conceded six – the third most in the Premier League – while four have been given against United.

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The last player to score a penalty in this fixture was James Milner back in 2017 but this Premier League season has seen an abundance of penalties: 69 have already been awarded so far (last term there were 92) and we’re not even halfway through. United have scored five out of six of their penalties in 2020/21 while Liverpool have a 100% record from the spot in this campaign.

Let’s be honest, it’s a mystery as to how United are top when they’re so bad. They haven’t lost in the League away from home since going down 2-0 in this fixture a year ago. But it’s possible that their limitations will be exposed by the champions on Sunday. In this topsy-turvy season teams can be title contenders one minute then look like they’ll be lucky to finish in top six the next.

Liverpool could win comfortably. They are, after all, unbeaten in the league in 64 matches at Anfield. With that in mind, 80/1 on the hosts winning both halves and Premier League top goalscorer Mo Salah scoring a hat-trick doesn’t look too mean. Salah scored three in the opening game of the season here so, by his standards, you could say he’s due another hat-trick.