Another tricky test for Bilic’s men
West Ham leaving Upton Park at the end of last season was marked by a fantastic fanfare, a celebration which perhaps went on a little too long but was still an impressive recognition of what the Hammers had achieved in 112 years at the East London venue.
A move to the London Stadium was supposed to push the club into the next tier of the footballing elite but to say there have been teething problems would be an understatement. Fan unrest has added to a set of results which are hardly impressive and one of last season’s surprise packages have looked a shadow of their former selves, albeit with a huge injury list to contend with.
Slaven Bilic’s men have won just two of their five home league games this term with defeats coming against Watford and Southampton. They are also yet to face a side who currently sit inside the top 8 on home soil. So should they be just 19/20 (1.95) at Betway when they welcome a Stoke side who sit five places above them in the Premier League despite making a woeful start to the campaign?
The visitors are an industry best price of 16/5 (4.20) with the same firm to pick up three points for the fourth consecutive match, a run which has seen them score 7 goals and concede just once. The draw is priced at 13/5 (3.60). With their home games seemingly not offering anything like the usual advantage that can be expected, it could pay to oppose a Hammers side who have won just three of their 10 league matches so far.
Wins over Swansea, Hull City and Sunderland are hardly the toughest tasks that Stoke City will face this season but they look capable of taking something from this game. The quote of 5/6 (1.83) on Draw/Stoke (Double Chance) looks of interest while more ambitious punters should consider the option of backing the visitors on the “Draw No Bet” market.
That’s a 17/10 (2.70) shot with Betway and offers the concession of your stake being returned if the match ends all square plus a tasty potential profit on the away win.
Elsewhere in the scorer markets, the eye-catching performance of Wilfried Bony in Monday night’s 3-1 win over his former club Swansea could signal a big turn in fortunes for the on loan Manchester City striker, who netted twice at the bet365 Stadium.
The Ivory Coast international is a stand out 11/4 (3.75) to score anytime in Saturday’s clash with Betway and that price is simply too big considering he looks to be finding his feet as the focal point of Hughes’ attacking trio.
As short as 13/8 (2.63) elsewhere, the 27-year-old has plenty to prove after falling out of favour at the Etihad Stadium and a West Ham side who have leaked nearly two goals per game in the season to date could provide him with another opportunity to demonstrate what convinced his parent club to part with over £30 million in order to bring him to Manchester.