Flying in fourth-place, West Ham are perfectly poised to end their long-standing Everton hoodoo this weekend at sizeable odds of 3/1.
Not since 2007 have the Hammers celebrated victory over Roberto Martinez’s men, while one must delve as deep into the annals as 2005 to find the last time they prevailed on Merseyside.
Such statistics may be enough to inspire a bet on the hosts at 17/20, or failing that, there’s 13/5 about the draw.
But the below factors suggest there has never been a better time (aside from the aforementioned December afternoon in 2005) to back West Ham to sink the Toffees on their own patch.
Everton’s Goodison Park stronghold isn’t quite so formidable these days.
An horrifically out of sorts Aston Villa side are the only outfit to fall in a Premier League game in the Toffees’ backyard this term.
Swansea snared a share of the spoils with ten men at this venue, while a distinctly inferior Crystal Palace claimed maximum points, which surely means the eastenders have more than a fighting chance here.
West Ham’s road form has improved immeasurably this term.
Five defeats from their final six sojourns was a fitting microcosm to define the Irons’ dismal campaign away from base camp last season.
Their only loss this time around came in understandable circumstances against Manchester United, though their performance at Old Trafford – which included a contentiously disallowed Kevin Nolan goal – arguably merited more than a 2-1 reverse.
Sam Allardyce’s charges have already put paid to one hex this season.
South London’s Crystal Palace were frequent beaters of their cross-capital counterparts, but 2014/15 saw the curtain fall on their patch of dominance.
Prior to their 3-1 Selhurst Park ram raid in August, the Hammers were without victory in six against this foe and hadn’t won in deepest, darkest Croydon since 1991.