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Manchester City v Wigan Athletic Betting Preview – Saturday 5th March, 2011

Fri, Mar 4, 10:19pm by Kevin Pitstock

The instinct is to regard this game as a bit of a turkey shoot, with Manchester City up against a Wigan side who can occasionally fall apart and ship serious amounts of goals. City don’t look to be able to chase down Arsenal and Manchester United at the top, but they are coming under pressure for a place in the top four which brings Champions League football something that is absolutely essential for the big spending owners to be happy. Wigan have hit the foot of the table after their home defeat by Manchester United and their prospects are uncertain.

The build up for City has been dominated by the shock news that Kolo Toure has failed a drugs test, so he is ruled out for the immediate future, and in all probability the rest of the season. Vincent Kompany is expected to return in central defence and there could also be a place on the bench for Nigel de Jong. Despite injuries leaving them with “15 fit players” according to Roberto Mancini they still can name a strong squad. Mario Balotelli is showing some good form, and Carlos Tevez should be fresh after being rested for their very comfortable win over Aston Villa in the FA Cup. Baoltelli has scored in his last two games and is a good bet for first goalscorer here. City have lost just twice at home, and for them to lose here would be among the biggest surprises of the entire Premier League season – and there have been a few.

A run of just one win in 10 games (over Blackburn) has sent Wigan to the foot of the table, and they do look like they have problems. Full-back Emmerson Boyce is ruled out for Wigan, but on-loan Manchester United winger Tom Cleverley can play having not been eligible to face United in their 4-0 defeat last week. The one hope for Wigan comes, strangely enough, in their away form. They actually sit in the middle of an away league table, and although they have just two wins, they have picked up useful points in draws, most recently with in form Liverpool. The problem is they can collapse after going behind, having taken beatings from United last week and Chelsea at the start of the season.

City are obviously short price favourites and we’d expect a 3-0 victory here, but that offers little betting value, so we’ll go for Mario Balotelli to get the opening goal at $4.50 with Sporting Bet.
Back Mario Balotelli to score first at $4.50 with Sporting Bet!

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