22 December 2019
After securing a comfortable 3-0 win over lower-league outfit Colchester in midweek’s Carabao Cup fixture, Manchester United will be back to the Premier League (PL) action this weekend when they head to Vicarage Road to take on dead-last Watford.
Having picked up only one triumph in 17 PL matches this term (D6, L10), the hosts are nailed to the bottom of the table and sit six points adrift of the safe zone. What’s more, Watford are still chasing their elusive first home win of the season (D4, L4). They are now winless in 12 successive league home matches (D5, L7), with their last PL home triumph dating back to early April. Except for a goalless home draw with Crystal Palace, the Hornets have suffered four defeats in five of their previous PL outings, conceding at least two goals in each of those failures, while scoring only once. Indeed, Watford’s main problem this term has been a lack of goals, as they remain the only side in England’s top tier that are yet to reach double figures (9). In fact, Nigel Pearson’s men have failed to find the back of the net in ten of 17 PL games so far, netting over 1.5 match goals only twice.
Meanwhile, undefeated in their last six PL matches (W3, D3), the visitors have roared back into contention for the top-four finish, as they now trail fourth-placed Chelsea by only four points. Interestingly, all six of their league games during the above run have seen both teams score, with five of them featuring three or more goals. Although they’ve won only once in their last three PL road trips (W1, D1, L1), the Red Devils are expected to walk away from Vicarage Road with all three points, as they boast an intimidating competitive away record against Watford. They have racked up seven wins in their last eight competitive trips to Watford (W7, L1), bagging two or more goals in each of those successes. However, they’ve kept a clean sheet only once across those eight fixtures, conceding over 1.5 match goals three times.