West Ham are joined by Southampton in the shallow waters of the Europa League, which is now just two rounds away from starting in earnest.
The Hammers entertain Romania’s Astra Giurgiu, while Southampton welcome Chelsea reserves Vitesse Arnhem.
Both Premier League outfits are heavily fancied to win at 53/100 and 33/100 respectively, but we’ve sounded out two better value wagers from each match just as likely to land.
West Ham v Astra Giurgiu
Under 1.5 goals @ 9/4
West Ham have faced sides of minnow-to-a-stickleback stature in the previous rounds of this competition, yet have only been able to prevent this bet copping in one of their four matches.
Astra were just as prolific as far as landing unders punts is concerned in both legs of their second preliminary round tie with Inverness Caledonian Thistle, with just one goal scored across two legs.
Furthermore, the Romanians haven’t scored more than one in any of their last nine matches in this competition.
West Ham to win 1-0 @ 21/4
Three of the four prelim fixtures involving the Irons have finished 1-0, while they’ve leaked just one goal across these games.
Working on the premise that the net will bulge once at most here and Slaven Bilic’s side are likely to keep a clean sheet, this is the most likely scoreline by some margin.
Southampton v Vitesse
Both teams to score @ 11/10
While it’s difficult to envisage anything but a Saints win here, the net rippling courtesy of the men from Arnhem can’t be discounted.
They’ve done so in ten of their last 11 sojourns, including their only away-day friendly against Sparta Prague on their previous outing.
Southampton notched 11 goals across the final five home games of the previous season.
More goals to be scored in the first half @ 9/5
Of the 14 registered in total across the aforementioned five fixtures at St Mary’s, nine prior to the interval.
Similarly, seven of the 12 bagged in Vitesse’s last three competitive away games came before the half-time whistle.