Rugby fanatic - but so much more
Rugby fanatic - but so much more
After kicking off their Premier League campaign with a 2-0 win away to Sheffield United, Wolves will be looking to continue their superb start at home to Manchester City. Nuno Santo's men did not show any signs of rustiness against the Blades and they were worthy winners, while City didn't play in the opening round of fixtures due to their Champions League exertions. This is a tough one to call, but read on and check out our betting tip below which is provided by our football experts at betting.co.uk.
After a fabulous campaign in which they finished seventh and reached the last eight of the Europa League, Wolves will be looking to kick on this term. Aside from strengthening their attack with a record £35million deal for Fabio Silva, Santo has made two further acquisitions in the summer window.
Retaining the services of Raul Jimenez and Adama Traore will be a big boost to a side who will be harbouring European ambitions this term. Wolves made a blistering start against Sheffield United, scoring twice in the opening six minutes and they will be looking to impose themselves early on against City.
After coming up well short in the title race last term, Pep Guardiola will be desperate to set the record straight. Going forward, City are lethal and they racked up 102 goals in the Premier League last season. The deadly trio consisting of Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero notched up 77 goals between them in all competitions. Sterling has become more prolific and last term he netted once every 129 minutes.
Although Kevin De Bruyne has been a continual creative spark in midfield and links up the play well, David Silva's departure will be sorely felt. The defence has been a bone of contention and question marks have been placed over John Stones, but signing Nathan Ake from Bournemouth will help shore things up at the back.
Wolves have a pretty impressive record against City. Of the 121 meetings across all competitions, the Midlands outfit shade things with 48 wins to their name, while City have chalked up 47 victories and 26 of the contests have resulted in a draw.
In more recent times, Wolves have tilted the balance of power in their favour and last season enjoyed a double over City by winning both at home and the Etihad. The victory in Manchester fell into the smash and grab category as Santo's men had to absorb some pressure and enjoyed just 24% of possession before claiming a 2-0 win. Aside from when City ran out 3-0 winners in January 2019, Wolves have been a stiff opponent.
This fixture has not been short on goals in recent times. If you are feeling tempted, BetVictor are offering odds of 4/1 on there being over 4.5 goals in total.
Santo v Guardiola: Nuanced styles offered up by managers
Under Santo, Wolves have enjoyed a tactical revolution. Previously under Paul Lambert, Wolves had an uninspiring manager and were going nowhere. But Santo has shaken things up and he has made his side industrious. Whether that be deploying a 3-4-3 or 3-5-2 formation, Wolves are quick in transition and powerful going forward.
Whereas under the tutelage of Guardiola, City have tailored their tactics to make them a dominant force. The emphasis is on possession football rather than counter-attacking at speed and he does this by splitting the pitch into individual zones. Guardiola's system is arguably more sophisticated, but Monday's contest should be a compelling one. This is the sort of match that City need to win to make a statement of intent early doors in the campaign.
Although City will be eager to wrench the title from Liverpool's grasp, Wolves have fared well against their illustrious opponents in recent seasons and with Santo at the helm, they will always pose problems in attack. With Jimenez and Traore in their ranks, Wolves are a real threat and City can't switch off for a single moment. Traore has netted three times in his last two appearances against City and we are backing him to score anytime against the former champions. Betfair are offering a generous 11/2 on our tip.