The legion of doom mongers have spent the past seven days trying their darnedest to spook Manchester United ahead of West Ham’s visit.
Another Red Devils loss looms, or so they say, with Louis van Gaal’s wafer-thin defensive ranks reduced to just one fit senior centre-half.
Plenty will be tempted to wade in on the juicy 25/4 about an away win in light of this information, but the fact of the matter is there is no better opponent for the 20-time English champions to face than Sam Allardyce’s side.
The 2/5 about a home win is the only way to bet here, irrespective of the fact that United could be fielding youth player Paddy McNair alongside Premier League rookie Marcus Rojo in the heart of their defence.
West Ham have previous of facing this foe when almost their entire defensive department has called in sick, yet they’ve never so much as scored a goal in these games, let alone lassoed the laurels.
Both meetings occurred at Upton Park and inside the previous four seasons in which the pair shared top-tier status.
Last term a beleaguered Man Utd were forced to field Michael Carrick at centre-half alongside Phil Jones, but the degree of emergency was epitomised the inclusion of Alexander Buttner at left-back.
None of this prevented them from claiming a 2-0 win, though.
The 2009/10 vintage saw them double their goal haul with another patched up backline.
Gary Neville was deployed at centre-back but could only complete 34 minutes of action before succumbing to injury.
Again Carrick manned the fort, with Darren Fletcher performing impromptu right-back duties and still the Irons were unable to bag.
If they couldn’t score against a Man Utd defence held together with lolly sticks and sellotape on their own patch, it stands to reason they’ll draw a blank at the Theatre of Dreams, where they’ve failed to hassle the scorekeep on five of their last six sojourns.
Don’t believe the hype; Man Utd’s slapdash defence will see off the West Ham challenge, with a win to nil particularly appealing at 33/20.