FA Cup prediction and best bets

Coventry vs Man Utd betting tips

The FA Cup offers Manchester United the chance to save their season but Sunday’s semi-final against Championship side Coventry City is hardly likely to be a straightforward affair (3.30pm, ITV1). 

Erik ten Hag’s position is under serious scrutiny after an underwhelming campaign in which they crashed out of the Champions League in the group stage and failed to mount a serious top four challenge.

United’s new owners may be considering a change in the dugout, but Ten Hag has the chance to deliver a second successive season with silverware after capturing the EFL Cup in his maiden campaign. 

The Red Devils are a best-price of 13/5 in the FA Cup odds to lift the trophy for a 13th time and football betting sites make them odds-on to qualify for the final for a second year running after defeat to Manchester City in the 2023 decider. 

Opponents Coventry are 10/3 to reach their second-ever FA Cup final having gone home with the trophy on their only other appearance in 1987. 

Since then, Coventry have suffered their fair share of FA Cup ignominy, going out to the likes of Sutton, Rochdale and Worcester City, while Wrexham eliminated them last year when still a non-league side.

But the Sky Blues have shown they are up for the cup this year with a remarkable quarter-final comeback win away to Wolves

Having famously saved the skin of one Man Utd manager in Sir Alex Ferguson when part of the Red Devils’ FA Cup-winning side of 1990, could ex-United forward, turned Coventry boss, Mark Robins be about to end the tenure of the current United manager with a famous Wembley win?

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Coventry vs Man Utd prediction: Sky Blues have upset potential

Neither side head to the national stadium in brilliant form. Coventry were beaten 3-0 by Birmingham City last time out, dealing a massive blow to their play-off hopes. 

The Sky Blues have lost three of their last four league games and a top six berth and return to Wembley for the play-off final may now be beyond them. 

That might turn out to be a blessing in disguise with the play-off and FA Cup finals scheduled for the same weekend and while betting sites don’t give Coventry much hope of going through to the FA Cup decider, they aren’t a side that should be underestimated.

The Sky Blues lost some key players last summer after narrowly missing out on promotion but have recruited well with Ellis Simms and Haji Wright proving good attacking additions. 

Coventry’s success last season was based on a watertight defence, but they’ve adapted to become a more attacking outfit. They rank sixth in the Championship for expected goals and are the FA Cup’s top-scoring side. 

Robins has shown himself to be tactically versatile and has a knack for adjusting his team on the fly, as he did to great effect in the quarter-final win over Wolves.

They may have needed a sensational late comeback to win at Molineux but it was a deserved success, Coventry winning the expected goals and shot count battle comfortably against Premier League opposition.

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Despite recent results, the Sky Blues should fancy their chances against a Red Devils side embroiled in rumours of dressing room unrest.

They’ve failed to build on that epic quarter-final win over Liverpool, failing to win any of their subsequent four league games, and have been lucky to have only lost once in that time.

Brentford, Liverpool and Bournemouth all had enough opportunities to beat Ten Hag’s men, many of who look unsure of their roles at this moment.

A catalogue of defensive injuries isn’t helping, but United have been very open all season with only Luton conceding more shots in the top flight.

United have a squad full of big names that should rise to the occasion in a big match such as this one and prove their superiority against second tier opponents. And yet, it’s tough to trust them to beat anyone right now, such is the chaotic nature of their games.

Coventry’s defensive record is a worry but at the current prices on gambling sites, it may be worth taking a chance on the Sky Blues pulling off the upset or at least taking this game to extra-time.

Coventry vs Man Utd tip 1: Coventry-draw double chance – 7/4 with William Hill

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Coventry vs Man Utd tips: Wright to be Coventry hitman

With United having shipped 12 goals across their last five games and the aforementioned tendency to let opponents have shots on goal, it’s worth looking at a Coventry forward in the goal-scorer markets on betting apps.

Simms, who has bagged five FA Cup goals this season, and Wright are the shortest prices among Coventry players to score at 3/1 apiece, with the latter potentially a better prospect.

The USA international has enjoyed an excellent first season with Coventry following his switch from Antalyaspor and has had a hand in more goals than anyone else for City, registering 22 goal involvements.

He’s netted 17 of those goals himself, including the match-winner against Wolves, and his recent form is good with six goals in the last nine games.

Wright has averaged more shots per 90 minutes than anyone else for Coventry this season at 3.61 shots per game and is the designated penalty taker, which may prove important considering United have given away three penalties in the last three games.

Coventry vs Man Utd tip 2: Haji Wright to score anytime – 14/5 with bet365

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FA Cup predictions: Expect end-to-end entertainment

Watching United has rarely been dull this season, and Sunday’s semi-final could be the more entertaining of the two last-four encounters, given both sides are at their best when going forward. 

United have netted in their last 18 games, scoring two or more in 13 of those matches, and Coventry have gone eight games without a clean sheet. 

Ten Hag’s side average just over 13 shots per game in the Premier League but should create a few more openings against a Sky Blues team that ranks in the Championship’s top-10 for the average number of shots allowed.

Coventry will get chances too and plenty of them based on United’s recent numbers. The Red Devils are on a seven-game run of allowing 20 or more shots per game, while no side faces more shots per 90 minutes (17.75) on average in the top flight.

Last Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Bournemouth was the first United game since mid-January to feature fewer than 30 attempts on goal and there’s liable to be plenty of goalmouth action at Wembley.

Coventry vs Man Utd tip 3: Over 30.5 total shots – 10/11 with BoyleSports

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FA Cup free bet offers

The stage is set for an entertaining pair of FA Cup semi-finals and for those wishing to have a wager on the action at Wembley, you may want to check out these free bet offers first. 

BetVictor are currently giving new customers £40 in free bets to place on football. All you have to do to qualify is sign up using this link and opt in to the welcome promotion on the offers tab. 

Next, make a deposit via debit card or Apply Pay and place a qualifying wager of £10 or more on football at odds of evens (2.0) or greater. 

Once the bet is settled, you’ll receive the free bets in £10 instalments to stake on football.

BetVictor also run a UK casino, featuring some of the top games slot sites have to offer.

Before joining any new betting sites, always read the terms and conditions of the welcome offer first. If you do bet on the FA Cup, please gamble responsibly.

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