Week in Sport Betting Preview 27 January : Carabao Cup semis, Masters darts and world title boxing
- 27 Jan - 2 Feb
- Live on Sky Sports
The Carabao Cup final will be set this week as the second legs of the semi-finals are played out, before a return to Premier League action at the weekend. There is also world championship boxing and the top 16 of the PDC are in action at the Masters in the first event since Peter Wright won the world title on New Year’s Day.
Aston Villa vs Leicester – Tuesday 28 January
The first leg was something of a surprise as Villa held Leicester to a 1-1 draw at the King Power, with the underdogs nearly taking an advantage into the second contest. Frederic Guilbert gave the Villains a first half lead, which they held onto for over 45 minutes before Kelechi Iheanacho equalised.
The former Manchester City striker has been in good form since he has been given more chances in the first team in recent weeks. The 23-year-old was on the score sheet again on Saturday in the FA Cup against Brentford and with Jamie Vardy struggling with injury, the Nigerian is going to start again against Villa.
Dean Smith’s side have a chance to pull off a bit upset here, but their defence is pretty shoddy and we can expect them to concede. They have just three clean sheets in their last 20 matches and a good Leicester side will be able to find a way through. Iheanacho is the main threat and is worth backing to score.
Man City vs Man Utd - Wednesday 29 January
Manchester City have at least one foot in the League Cup final after beating Manchester United 3-1 at Old Trafford in the first leg. It was a dominant display from the Premier League champions against their local rivals, with Marcus Rashford’s goal keeping United alive in the tie, but their chances are extremely slim.
Both teams had morale-boosting thrashings in the FA Cup on Sunday, with City battering Fulham 4-0 and United walloping Tranmere 6-0, so both will be heading into this game confident of scoring goals.
The Red Devils don’t really have much choice but to try and go at City, even if it is by trying to soak up a bit of pressure and then hit hard on the counter-attack. Both teams will be attacking and going for the kill, so we can expect goals. Despite their surprise win at the Etihad in the Premier League this season, United are a significantly worse team and City will win this one, but they will concede again, as they have done in five of their last seven games.
Demetrius Andrade vs Luke Keeler – Thursday 30 January
One of the stranger world title fights of 2020 comes early in the year as Demetrius Andrade puts his WBO middleweight title on the line against Ireland’s Luke Keeler in Miami, Florida. Andrade (28-0) is the overwhelming favourite against Keeler (17-2-1) who can count himself very lucky to be having a shot at world honours, having never even been scheduled for a 12-rounder over his career to date.
Points wins over the likes of Conrad Cummings and Luis Arias have got him to this, but Andrade will not be fearing him at all, especially his meek record of just five knockout victories to his name.
However, Keeler will be game and tough and won’t wilt, with Andrade not boasting notable knockout power either. But the American will have too much for the Irishman and overwhelm him in the later rounds, similar to his seventh round stoppage of another unlikely European challenger, Brian Rose, back in 2014.
PDC Masters – Friday 31 January – Sunday 2 February
The first major of the PDC year is played this weekend as the top 16 players in the world assemble in Milton Keynes for the Masters. Michael van Gerwen has made this tournament his own in recent years, winning the last five editions of the Masters and he is the favourite to make it six on the spin this year.
However, there is a little bit of uncertainty surrounding the world number one at the start of this year. MVG is coming off his disappointing loss to Peter Wright in the World Championship final and more importantly he is using new darts for the first time in around eight years. Mighty Mike has switched to Winmau and that brings with it some questions. It is not unreasonable to expect the three-time world champion to have a few struggles while he gets used to his new arrows and he will likely suffer some surprise losses in the first half of the year.
Ready to pounce on his stumble will be Gerwyn Price, who had a superb 2019 and will only have been spurred on by his loss in the World Championship semi-final to Wright. The Iceman is going to have a tussle with MVG and Snakebite for the top player on the planet this year and he can land an early blow in that fight. He is under the radar a tough in this event as the two World Championship finalists are garnering the attention, but that makes the Welshman great value, at least to reach the final.
Tottenham vs Man City - Sunday 2 February
Jose Mourinho has his first crack at Manchester City as Tottenham manager on Sunday in the Premier League and he will be relishing the opportunity to gain ground on the top four.
We can expect Spurs to be playing quite defensively and look to hit City on the break, as they did against Liverpool in a 1-0 defeat, although Mourinho’s plan nearly worked. Tottenham under Jose are capable of frustrating the champions, and if the likes of Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura can take their chances, then they could pinch a result, just as they did in the Champions League in north London last season.
It is completely understandable that City are favourites, but Tottenham are a wild best price of 5/1 for this one and Mourinho is well worth backing at that huge value.
- Leicester had 70% possession in the first leg against Aston Villa
- Aston Villa have just three clean sheets in their last 20 games
- Man City have just two clean sheets in their last seven matches
- Man Utd have scored in five of their last six games against Man City
- Demetrius Andrade has won all 28 of his professional fights
- Luke Keeler’s two defeats have come to Tom Doran
- Gerwyn Price won five PDC titles in 2019
- The Iceman has risen to world number three after the 2020 World Championship
- Man City have only won two of their last four meetings with Spurs
- Tottenham are unbeaten in four games