CHRIS Graham (@chrisgraham79) looks at the first leg of the second Capital One Cup semi-final between Everton and Manchester City.
Everton v Manchester City | Wednesday 19:45 | Sky Sports 1
Man City decided to extract their finger from their nether regions during the second half of their match with Watford on Saturday evening. Two late goals saw them win their first away league match since September and they’ve regained title favouritism.
They’re just a horrible side to be betting on or against this season though and you’ve possibly noticed that their matches rarely make my Premier League tips column every weekend. When they play live on the TV like here I have to preview the match innit.
Let’s talk about their opponents though. Everton are in the semi-finals of this competition for the first time since 2007/08 and it’s their first Last 4 appearance since the 2012 FA Cup. The stakes are high for the Merseyside club.
Roberto Martinez seems to be doing a lot of side stepping at the club. One step forward, one step back and the fans are getting frustrated, Surely he knows that securing Everton’s first trophy since the 1995 FA Cup will do him the absolute world of good.
Martinez was the man who plotted the downfall of Man City in the 2013 FA Cup Final when in charge of the hugely unfashionable Wigan Athletic so maybe he can do it again?
Who knows what Man City’s intensity levels will be like on Wednesday but the fact this is an away match (one domestic win since late-September) and the first leg of a two leg encounter makes me think they’ll hardly groaning with anticipation to get on the pitch.
While Manchester City’s away form has been poor, so has Everton’s home form. The Toffees have picked up just two points from a possible 12 at home since the birth of December but Sunday’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham at Goodison was encouraging.
I’ll go out on a limb here and back Everton at 14/5 with BetVictor. If you’re a bit more conservative than me you can back them at a shade of odds on in the Double Chance market.
It’s a Man City game, so naturally my stakes will be low. With that in mind there’s no point playing at short odds so I’ll be having a fun interest on Everton to take a first leg lead to the Etihad.
14/5 is big for what I consider a Top 8 side, City can’t be trusted away from home and I really think this will mean so much more to Everton than their opponents.
Everton v Manchester City – Everton to win (14/5 BetVictor)
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