Four matches to watch this weekend

rangers2015
Enugu Rangers International
Bantu United v Enugu Rangers @Setsoto Stadium @3pm on Jan.13

With the Nigeria Professional Football League set to resume this weekend after a seven-month hiatus, Rangers International of Enugu will be in Lesotho to confront Bantu United in a first leg round of 16 tie in the CAF Confederations Cup.

In their two away matches in the tournament, the Gbenga Ogunbote-tutored side has won one and drawn one.

They beat Defence Force of Ethiopia 3-1 and earned a creditable 0-0 away to Algerian side, USM Bel Abbes. Two-goal hero against USM Bel Abbes, Bright Silas said before their departure that he believed Rangers would get a win away in Maseru on Sunday.

Prediction: Bantu 1-2 Rangers

Tottenham v Man Utd @Wembley Stadium @5:30pm on Jan.13

Manchester United’s new manager, Ole Gunnar Solksjaer took his team to Dubai for training but there will be nothing warm at Wembley on Sunday when he faces his first acid test after replacing Jose Mourinho.

Unexpectedly, Spurs lost 1-3 last time out in the league against Wolves but will want to cement their top-four placing with another three points.

Whilst acknowledging Tottenham as a very good side, Solksjaer revealed United were going to attack on Sunday.

“You all know the best teams in the league and of course we have to be aware of their strengths. But I’ve been brought up in a way that we need to attack teams.

“I think that’s our strength as well, going forward and attacking, as a team when you look at us now the way we’ve played.”

The manager has led his team first five matches in charge, scoring 16 and conceding just three. Spurs have some of their heavy hitters back in training with Jan Vertonghen, Eric Dier and Mousa Dembele all back in training and line for recall on Sunday.

Current Form: Tottenham [W-W-W-L-W]; Man. Utd [W-W-W-W-W]

Head to head

Mon   27/08/18       PRL     Man. Utd      0 – 3   Tottenham

Sat     21/04/18       FAC    Man. Utd      2 – 1   Tottenham

Wed  31/01/18       PRL     Tottenham   2 – 0   Man. Utd

Sat     28/10/17       PRL     Man. Utd      1 – 0   Tottenham

Sun     14/05/17       PRL     Tottenham   2 – 1   Man. Utd

Prediction: Tottenham 3-1 Man. Utd

Real Betis v Real Madrid @ Estadio Benito Villamarín @8:15pm on Jan.13

Santiago Solari is facing a crisis with bad results and mounting injuries. Gareth Bale, Marcos Llorente, Toni Kroos, and Thibaut Courtois have been ruled out while Lucas Vazquez is suspended.

Isco should start with all the injuries and suspensions though Quique Setien’s side likes to pack the midfield and attack through the full backs, especially the right back – Junior Firpo though the Brazilian is out injured. Betis are four points behind Madrid and have already beaten Barcelona this season.

Current Form: Real Betis [L-D-W-D-W]; Real Madrid [W-L-D-W-W]

Head to head

Sun     18/02/18       LAL     Real Betis     3 – 5   Real Madrid

Wed  20/09/17       LAL     Real Madrid            0 – 1   Real Betis

Sun     12/03/17       LAL     Real Madrid            2 – 1   Real Betis

Sat     15/10/16       LAL     Real Betis     1 – 6   Real Madrid

Sun     24/01/16       LAL     Real Betis     1 – 1   Real Madrid

Prediction: Real Betis 3-2 Real Madrid

Marseille v AS Monaco @Orange Velodrome @9pm on Jan.13

Two fallen (falling) French giants, Marseille and Monaco seek to steal the spotlight on Sunday in Ligue 1 with both teams totally off the pace. While Marseille are 20 points off PSG in sixth, Monaco are wallowing in relegation waters – 19th having won just three league matches all season and having lost 11 though their current form is better than Marseille’s and Thierry Henry has brought in some old heads like Cesc Fabregas and Naldo, to bolster the midfield and defence.

Marseille’s Rudi Garcia is maybe a home loss away from the sack and this could be it.

Current Form: Marseille [L-D-L-L-L]; Monaco [W-W-L-W-L]

Head to head

Sun     02/09/18       LI1       Monaco       2 – 3   Marseille

Sun     28/01/18       LI1       Marseille      2 – 2   Monaco

Sun     27/08/17       LI1       Monaco       6 – 1   Marseille

Wed  01/03/17       CDF    Marseille      3 – 4    Monaco

Sun     15/01/17       LI1       Marseille      1 – 4   Monaco

Prediction: Marseille 3-1 Monaco

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