FA Cup betting – Man City vs Stoke City
Man City vs Stoke betting preview
Stoke City provided the opposition in Roberto Mancini’s first game in charge of Man City, but were unable to prevent the Italian registering his first home win after replacing Mark Hughes at the helm. Saturday tea time sees both teams meet in the 5th round of the FA Cup and three days later City travel to the Britannia to do battle again, this time in the Premier League. Stoke shocked Arsenal in the last round but they must achieve something no other club has this season, and that’s claim victory at Eastlands. The bookmakers make City odds on favourites to progress into the last eight of the competition and they are best priced at 1/2, Stoke are a massive 7/1 to go that one step further and if a replay is forced, the draw pays out at 10/3 with Coral.
After overcoming Championship opposition in the 4th round, City have already bettered last season’s performance in the world’s oldest knockout competition. Billy Davies’ Nottingham Forest embarrassed a Mark Hughes’ City side 3-0 at Eastlands in the third round last year but the Blues’ find themselves second favourites to win the competition this time around. Rivals Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool have already bitten the dust and City will feel they are genuine contenders to win the trophy and at 7/2 they represent a sound bet. City haven’t won the FA Cup since 1969 but could this be their year?
The cup winners automatically qualify for the play off rounds of the 2010/2011 UEFA Europa League but Mancini’s side are set on a top four finish in the Premier League which will see them qualify for the Champions League proper. The FA Cup may represent the Citizens’ best chance of silverware this season after falling at the penultimate hurdle to their Manchester rivals in the Carling Cup. Manchester City’s trophy cabinet, it must be said, is achingly, groaningly empty, as a banner updated at Old Trafford every season joyously points out. But things can change and FA Cup success would be a start.
The Potters are unbeaten so far in 2010 and set up this tie thanks to a routine victory at home to Blue Square Premier outfit York City and a 3-1 win against 2005 winners Arsenal. Tuncay Sanli’s at Wigan in midweek meant Tony Pulis’ side had now not tasted defeat since Birmingham inflicted a 1-0 defeat in late December. Stoke themselves were eliminated at the third round stage in last years competition when League One Hartlepool accounted for them at Victoria Park. But Pulis’ Potters have convinced the doubters this season who thought their only form of attack was via a Rory Delap’s long throw and they travel the short distance to Manchester bidding to reach the quarter finals for the first time.
City striker Carlos Tevez is in red hot goalscoring form of late and is worth a small stake at7/2 to open the scoring on Saturday. The Argentine’s strike partner Emmanuel Adebayor has also started to find the back of the net with two in as many games and may represent better value at 4s. Stoke are the lowest away scorers in all four tiers of English football having scored just five on the road and their main attacking threat lies with front two Ricardo Fuller and Tuncay Sanli, the pair at 9s and 10s respectively with Bet 365.
City returned to winning ways in midweek with a 2-0 success over Bolton after a blip at Hull last weekend, and Mancini will be looking for a repeat of the Boxing Day win over the Potters. The two sides have previously met five times in the FA Cup with City winning three of those, but Stoke were victorious the last time out winning 1-0 in 1976.
Manchester City are unbeaten at Eastlands under the stewardship of Roberto Mancini and have amassed three 2-0 victories in the former Inter Milan Boss’ five home games in the hot seat. The Citizens are 5/1 to win by a 2-0 score line and this seems reasonable considering Stoke’s woeful scoring record away from the Britannia. As many as six teams from outside the top flight could still be left in the competition after this weekend’s fixtures, so whoever progresses in this one will be in with a good chance of a favourable draw in the next round. Personally, I think Stoke’s cup run will end here such is the form of Manchester City at Eastlands. Stoke may frustrate City for long periods in this one but City should run out comfortable winners and put the Potters to the sword for the first time in 2010. The best Stoke can hope for is a replay but neither side will want another fixture in their already busy schedules. Lump on City to win this famous competition outright at 4/1 with Betfred.
Reccomended bets: Man City to win at 2-0 at 6/1 with Blue Square – click for free bet
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