EFL Cup semi-finals tips as Man Utd host Hull and Liverpool visit Saints for first legs
Holly Thackeray | 11 January 2017
EFL Cup semi-finals tips first legs
After a weekend of riveting FA Cup third round battles, football fans are being spoilt for choice as the EFL Cup arrives to entertain midweek with the final four teams all elite Premier League sides. Coral writers have picked out the best Man Utd v Hull odds and tastiest Southampton v Liverpool bets for punters’ perusal, so dig into our EFL Cup semi-finals tips for the first legs.
With such packed fixture schedules, this quartet of top division clubs will all be eager to deliver knockout blows in their first bouts…
Wayne Rooney to score in Man Utd successOne of our tips just had to be for now joint all-time top Manchester United scorer Wayne Rooney to get in on the goal action.
After levelling Sir Bobby Charlton’s record last time out in the FA Cup, the Red Devils skipper will be eager to follow that up by surpassing the club legend.
Jose Mourinho should make use of that hitman hunger and find a starting slot for Rooney once more, with Utd now on a rampant run of 14 games unbeaten.
Against relegation threats Hull, Rooney also has a great historical haul, having starred in six victories from seven career appearances against them in which he also struck seven goals. So take odds of 13/10 for the Man Utd captain to convert anytime in a Red Devils triumph over the Tigers.
Over 3.5 goals in Man Utd v HullThere’s also value at 11/8 for over 3.5 goals to be scored in this ELF Cup semi-final first leg.
Mourinho’s men racked-up four over Championship team Reading last time out, but could have had as many as six or more on the scoresheet, such was their attacking intent.
Hull have been leaking goals left right and centre, with just two clean sheets across all competitions for the Humberside outfit this term. So, the likes of Rooney, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and co should be licking their lips.
Saints to hold RedsFrom among Southampton v Liverpool bets, a draw at 23/10 stands out, with both sides having drawn their respective FA Cup third round clashes at the weekend.
Jurgen Klopp may have fielded a weakened XI against League Two Plymouth Argyle but as his team trek to the south coast, the German coach will surely also have one eye on the upcoming Premier League Northwest derby with Man Utd.
So, as Saints held the Reds at St Mary’s earlier this season, and twice over the last two seasons, this first leg game looks good to end evenly.
Daniel Sturridge to score in drawAs for Red scorers, Daniel Sturridge is a shout at 17/2 to tuck one away in an eventual draw on the south coast.
The England forward has a great goal record when fit and has been on target twice in his last four appearances. With Philippe Coutinho sidelined and Sadio Mane away at the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations, Sturridge looks the likeliest to puncture Southampton’s usually sturdy defence.