Saturday, December 08, 2012



I am going to take the "London bus" approach with City today and after waiting 11 months for an away win the EPL, I think they might claim another today, following that win at the Hawthorns last weekend.  I wrote ahead of that .... I am rarely very complimentary about City, but whilst that are not very pleasing on the eye, it is impossible to dispute that they are extremely tough to beat. They might only have posted one road away win in 2012, but there have been plenty of draws and they have only lost three times this season. There was something to take from each of those defeats, at Chelsea, they held out for 86 minutes, at Manchester United they led and scored twice and at Norwich City, they were much the better team and lost to a hotly disputed goal. Albion have had a terrific season so far and have had a lot of media attention, but have actually lost one more game than City and looked a little like things were starting to catch up with them in their 3-1 defeat at Swansea City in midweek, where they were run ragged at times. They have kept just one clean sheet in ten starts, to a Southampton team who were really struggling at the time ,and have conceded two or more goals six times in that sequence and suddenly they look defensively fragile and as though they need three goals to win. City have a terrific record here, not losing since 2003 and winning on four of their last five visits.

City's record here is not as good, but they have taken points on three of their last four visits. They have won their last three and lost just once in seven starts, that unfortunate defeat at Norwich, just three goals conceded in that sequence, they will miss Charlie Adam today who is suspended and that is a loss, but Peter Crouch might be ready to return and with key central defender Ron Vlaar ( 13-0-0) again ruled out for Villa , the striker's aerial threat might be key. Goals are still in short supply for Villa and in 30 starts, they have only scored more than a single goal once and not lost the match ( if that makes sense !) 27 times scoring one goal or less. Given how tough City are to break down, they look good with the minimum start, but I will be a little braver and go for the bigger odds and the draw no bet quote. 1.25 units Stoke City level ball 2.26 asian line.

Good Luck.

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