Watford put in a spirited display when hosting league leaders Chelsea in midweek, though ultimately they fell just short and succumbed to a 2-1 defeat.
Emmanuel Dennis kept the goals coming by being the first player to score at home against the Blues from open play, and he’ll be hoping he can increase his tally this weekend.
Man City were on the correct side of the same scoreline when travelling to Villa park this week, with Ruben Dias and Bernardo Silva both netting brilliantly for them. That win keeps them within one point of the lead as they now look for their fifth consecutive victory in the league.
You’d be brave to bet against Pep Guardiola’s outfit managing that feat, especially considering they’ve won their last 13 clashes with the Hornets across all competitions, with the two meetings the last time Watford were in the top flight resulting in six points and an aggregate 14-0 scoreline to the Citizens.
While it may be a step too far for the hosts to come away from this with maximum points, they certainly have the ability to at least find the net and make the game tough for their visitors.
Both Teams To Score
Indeed, they’ve now averaged two goals per game across their last six outings under Ranieri despite facing all of Everton, Arsenal, Leicester, Man United and Chelsea in that run, and with Josh King and Emmanuel Dennis looking lively they’ll be confident they can pose a threat.
Dennis in particular is having a stellar season, with only Mohamed Salah obtaining more goal contributions this season than Nigerian. The 24-year-old has four goals in his last five games, and with the likes of John Stones and Kyle Walker posible absentees here, he may get a sniff or two and looks good value to put one away.
While the outcome of this is likely to be three points to the visitors, that’s not a certainty, especially when considering their below par W4-D2-L1 record vs promoted oppositions since the beginning of last season.
That’s not to say the hosts are going to come away with something, as they haven’t managed to do so in any of their seven games against the current top nine in the table, but more that there’s little value in backing the visitors outright.
Both teams to score looks to hold much better value. While Watford’s consistency in front of goal leaves much to be desired, the likes of King and Dennis are proving to be a handful, and with potentially weaker City defence, we’re happy to back the hosts to find the net.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE