Manuel Pellegrini will have a job on his hands to pick up his Manchester City squad after they gifted Chelsea a late victory at Stamford Bridge on Sunday but the Chilean at least has the luxury of a Capital One Cup tie in which to shuffle his pack and lift his team’s spirits.
Opponents Newcastle of course, will have other ideas, but they too are somewhat despondent having gone down 2-1 to rivals Sunderland in the Tyne-Wear derby at the weekend.
Stan James fancy City to be the team that enjoys the morale boost of a cup success, installing them as 4/5 favourites while Winner.com quote the Magpies at 9/2 and it’s 3/1 courtesy of bet365 to finish all square.
The visitors’ strength in depth however, should be the crucial factor at St James’s Park, the quality on the City bench at Chelsea an indicator of the kind of formidable team they can select even if ringing the changes on Tyneside.
Pellgrini meanwhile, might give Edin Dzeko the chance to shine after he was unused substitute at Stamford Bridge and the Bosnian is 6/1 with bet365 to break the deadlock, the same price that Skybet mark against Alvaro Negredo.
In the evening’s other match, Tottenham host Hull for the second time in four days having beaten the Tigers via a controversial late penalty at White Hart Lane on Sunday.
Spurs are just 4/11 at Betfred to triumph again but Steve Bruce’s troops (11/1, Winner.com) gave a good account of themselves at the weekend and subsequently the hosts don’t appeal at such a short price.
Man City to win and both teams to score – 12/5 (Ladbrokes)