Oxford United Vs Manchester City Betting: Oxford +3 AH – 18 December 2019

U's can keep this lopsided tie respectable?

James Henry /Oxford United ©imago images / Action Plus 17.12.2019

Oxford United Vs Manchester City

Wednesday 18th December 2019 – 19:45 Kick-Off
Pick: Oxford United +3 (Asian Handicap)
Odds: 3/5
Bookmaker: Bet365
EFL Cup Betting at 22Bet

(All betting odds displayed were correct at the time of writing: 16th December 2019 at 16:55)

Preview: The beauty of domestic cup competitions is ties such as this, where a club from League One has the opportunity to entertain the reigning champions of all three major English titles. Can Oxford United spring a huge upset inside their packed out Kassam Stadium or will Manchester City‘s superiority tell? We can find out for ourselves on Sky Sports.


Oxford United Preview – Dip in form far from ideal?

The U’s were previously unbeaten in eighteen games in all competitions prior to Saturday’s 1-0 loss away to MK Dons in League One. Among that lengthy run was the bludgeoning of West Ham United in this very competition, as Oxford United recorded a handsome 4-0 victory over the Premier League club. Victory here, over the English and defending EFL Cup champions, would undoubtedly top that – but is that scenario even remotely plausible?

An issue for the manager, Karl Robinson, is he must find a way to galvanize a group of players that are not currently in positive form. As already mentioned, their defeat at the weekend was a rarity – a first for eighteen games when excluding extra-time and penalties – but it is more the fact they have now gone three games without a win (D2 L1). More pressingly, the goals have dried up: none in their last three encounters, while in the game before that they edged past lower league opposition in the shape of Walsall in the FA Cup, 1-0.

On this evidence, the League One club have the proverbial mountain to climb. However, a positive aspect remains the defence: no opponent has scored more than one goal against them for eleven matches now, shutting out six of these sides during this spell. This also applies to three of their four previous encounters in this tournament when, in chronological order, Oxford negotiated Peterborough (1-0), Millwall (2-2), West Ham (4-0) and Sunderland (1-1). If they cannot win then, there is certainly hope that they can keep the scoreline respectable.


Both Teams to Score



Manchester City Preview – Squad depth on show in Oxfordshire?

While some clubs and managers have almost treated this competition with derision in recent times, this could not be any further from the truth for Manchester City and Pep Guardiola. Both are aiming to secure this trophy for a third consecutive term, having done so in 2017-18 and 2018-19, and the insatiable pair are odds-on favourites in some places to make it a hat-trick of successes. If they are to be stopped, surely it won’t be at the hands of League One opposition?

City must guard against complacency, though, something they have been guilty of on occasion under Guardiola (think Swansea away in last season’s FA Cup or the defeat to Wigan a couple seasons ago). Invariably, however, The Citizens have shown no mercy up against lower league opposition, racking up some truly ridiculous scorelines against the likes of Burton and Rotherham. It helps to have an embarrassment of riches to choose between, of course, as Pep evidently does.

In this competition thus far, Man City have encountered almost no resistance. I mean, by their high standards scorelines of 3-0 and 3-1, away to Preston and over Southampton at home, are fairly modest but, as of yet, nobody thus far has provided them with a scare. A hectic festive schedule will likely mean rotation is a formality for this, but that only means fresher legs from arguably the highest quality fringes players in world football coming in to rejuvenate an already world-class outfit.


Oxford United Vs Manchester City – Ket Facts:

  • In making it this far in the tournament, Oxford have needed to overcome Millwall, Peterborough, Sunderland and West Ham.
  • Winners of this competitions in the past two seasons, Man City dispatched with Preston and Southampton with minimal fuss en route to this stage.
  • This is a repeat of their EFL Cup clash from last season, which Man City won comfortably 3-0.


Betting Summary

As winners of EFL Cup in each of the past two seasons, it doesn’t require much genius to reach the conclusion that Manchester City (1/8 Betway) are going to make another huge concerted effort to win this trophy again. There will be the inevitable changes here and there but, on the whole, the line-up at the Kassam Stadium will be exceptionally strong. That could spell trouble for Oxford United who are without a win in three (D2 L1) but have, however, lost just one of the last eighteen league and cup matches.

The one thing that I can see working in favour of Oxford United (20/1 Ladbrokes) is their miserly defensive record, with none of their previous eleven opponents managing to put more than one goal past them. This resolute rearguard action has clearly carried over into this tournament, restricting Millwall (2), Peterborough (0), Sunderland (1) and West Ham (0) to three goals between them.

Naturally it will take a monumental effort to keep the scoring down on this occasion, considering the obvious gulf, but it could pay to back the underdogs keeping this respectable. Moreover, only Peterborough have scored more often in League One this season than Oxford (37 in just 19 games), who, evidently, do carry a considerable goal threat and could potentially contribute to the scoring.