Manchester City will square off against West Ham United in what should be an easy win win for the host at a first glance.
Although City is having a magnificent season and is riding a 19 game winning streak in all competitions (I`m including a win via penalties in the League Cup here), fact is that Guardiola’s boys have slowed down a bit recently. City stopped obliterating opponents in November, most of their wins being close, many of them via very late goals. It has been the case in their last three outings against Feyenoord, Huddersfield and Southampton – with the winner against Southampton on Wednesday coming in the 96th minute.
West Ham is in complete shambles right now, with the recent appointment of David Moyes doing nothing to improve the level of play. The Hammers have 1 draw and 2 losses under the Scotsman, including a 0-4 trashing at the hands of Everton a few days ago. West Ham is sitting on the 19th place with 10 points in 14 rounds, and has not won a game on the road this season (3 draws, 5 losses, 5-19 goal difference).Bet on Man City v West Ham and claim your 100% (100 Eur) bonus at Ohmbet now!
Team news & lineups:
Mendy and Stones are out for City, while Sane is a small doubt, but he should play. West Ham will miss Chicharito, Hart, Fonte and Byram, while Reid, Collins and Carrol are questionable.
Manchester City: Ederson – Walker, Mangala, Otamendi, Delph – Fernandinho – Sane, De Bruyne, B. Silva, Sterling – Aguero
West Ham United: Adrian – Zabaleta, Ogbonna, Rice, Cresswell – Kouyate, Obiang – Antonio, Lanzini, Arnautovic – Sakho
City will feel confident of winning this game and not just because of the massive quality difference, but also because of the matchup.
West Ham has the worst defense in the league, allowing more than 2 goals per game in average. Things have been even worse on the road, where West Ham suffered multiple blowouts, their losses coming by an average margin of 2.80 goals per game in the Premier League. These are not encouraging stats ahead of a trip to Etihad.
West Ham won`t be helped by the fact that their already banged up defense will now also miss Hart (ineligible due to loan clause) and probably Reid (injured in the last game, doubtful). This has the potential to expose their defensive vulnerabilities even more.
Despite the fact that City hasn`t been as sharp lately as they were earlier in the season, the hosts are still playing top class football, and their offense remains lethal. West Ham`s poor back line, which can`t stop anybody, should make life easier for the hosts. City clearly has the ability to put at least 3 or 4 goals past their disorganized opponents here.
City doesn`t need to bother about Champions League football next week, as they already won their group and will send the reserves to play in Ukraine against Shakhtar. As such, they can put their entire focus into this game, and surely they will try to assert themselves early, having the experience of past matches when they needed late game heroics to salvage wins.
I will choose safety first on my tip and I will only back City to cover a -2 asian handicap here, at odds which can bring a small but respectable profit even if they aren`t the highest.
While I choose to take minimum risk in terms of the prediction itself, I will take the risk of investing maximum stakes of 10 units on the bet, as I feel it is a warranted stake. Prediction: Manchester City – West Ham United 4-0.
Pick: Manchester City (-2 Asian Handicap)
Odds: 1.42 @ Betfair Sportsbook
Possible profit: 4.20
Event date: 3 December