Four matches to watch this weekend: Will Mourinho win first title as United manager?

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MFM v Enugu Rangers @Agege Stadium @7pmon Feb.24

MFM are in good form and in Stephen Odey, they have a striker scoring goals; while Enugu Rangers could have become a little weary after negotiating two games within three days and then flying to Lagos for a third match within six days.

Coach Imama Amakapabo has tried to instill more self belief into his players but MFM could prove too refreshed for the defending champions. The Olukoya Boys have not played any game since February 9, when they lost 1-0 away to ABS.

The first night game of the 2017 NPFL season promises to be a sell-out with the two teams capable of producing a worthy spectacle.

Current Form: MFM [L-W-W-D-W]; Rangers [W-D-D-L-D]

Head to head

01/09/16              NPF        Enugu Rangers  1 – 0       MFM

06/04/16              NPF        MFM     1 – 1       Enugu Rangers

Prediction: MFM 1-0 Rangers

Manchester United v Southampton @Wembley@5:30pm on Feb.26

Just seven months into his reign as Manchester United manager and Jose Mourinho has the chance to win a first trophy when he leads out his team against Southampton on Sunday at Wembley for the EFL Cup.

Mourinho has a pedigree in Cup finals – having led teams to 12 finals and won 10. The EFL Cup, formerly called the League Cup was also the first he won as Chelsea manager in 2004. For the Saints, their record against the Red Devils will be their driving spirit having beaten the Red Devils on two consecutive occasions at Old Trafford and the fact that games between both sides have been very tight affairs.

They are the underdogs but they have giant killers in their midst like new signing Manolo Gabbiadini; while manager Claude Puel is a wily old fox.

Current Form: Man Utd [W-W-W-W-D]; Southampton [W-L-L-L-W]

Head to head

19/08/16              PRL         Man. Utd             2 – 0       Southampton

23/01/16              PRL         Man. Utd             0 – 1       Southampton

20/09/15              PRL         Southampton    2 – 3       Man. Utd

11/01/15              PRL         Man. Utd             0 – 1       Southampton

08/12/14              PRL         Southampton    1 – 2       Man. Utd

Prediction: Man Utd 3-1 Southampton

Inter Milan v Roma @San Siro @8:45pm on Feb.26

It is make or mar for this rejuvenated Inter Milan team under Stefano Pioli; but their opponents, Roma, are in good form led by Edin Dzeko, who has already scored 19 league goals this season

Former Nerazzurri, Beppe Bergomi, says Inter have to produce a perfect team performance to beat Roma on current form. The Giallorossi have scored four goals on three occasions in their last five games.

Inter are in fourth place on 48 points while Roma have 56 points – seven less than Juventus, who top the table.

Current Form: Inter Milan [W-W-L-L-W]; Roma [W-W-W-W-W]

Head to head

02/10/16              SEA        Roma    2 – 1       Inter

19/03/16              SEA        Roma    1 – 1       Inter

31/10/15              SEA        Inter      1 – 0       Roma

25/04/15              SEA        Inter      2 – 1       Roma

30/11/14              SEA        Roma    4 – 2       Inter

Prediction: Inter 2-1 Roma

Atletico Madrid v Barcelona @Vicente Calderon@4: 15pm on Feb.26

The stakes could not be higher this weekend for this encounter between Atletico Madrid and Barcelona with their forms very different. Barcelona are hanging on to the coat tails of Real Madrid in the race for the title while Atletico also have a sniff if they can start making up the current deficit.

Barcelona have been in bad form following their 4-0 loss away to PSG and then a struggle to beat Leganes last weekend 2-1; while their hosts have seemingly gotten stronger – winning their last two matches and scoring four goals in both.

They won 4-1 away to Gijon and then followed that win with a 4-2 win also away in the UEFA Champions League against Bayer Leverkusen.

Many have already written off Luis Enrique’s team but they seem to be able to do the business against Diego Simeone’s team, especially at the Vicente Calderon. But will this represent a turning point for the Catalans as the end of the season beckons?

Current Form: Atletico [W-W-W-D-W]; Barcelona [W-L-W-D-W]

Head to head

07/02/17              CDR        Barcelona            1 – 1       Atlético

01/02/17              CDR        Atlético                1 – 2       Barcelona

21/09/16              PRD        Barcelona            1 – 1       Atlético

13/04/16              UCL        Atlético                2 – 0       Barcelona

05/04/16              UCL        Barcelona            2 – 1       Atlético

Prediction: Atletico 2-1 Barcelona
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