If West Ham end up dispensing of manager Sam Allardyce at the end of this season, as many in football believe is likely, then co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold will point to an inability to keep pace with the Premier League’s elite after a strong start to the campaign.
‘Big Sam’ is making it easy for the Davids at present, having overseen a run of no wins in seven and just two triumphs over 90 minutes in 12 all-competition fixtures, one of which came against League One Bristol City in the FA Cup.
However, such statistics don’t quite tell the whole tale of the Irons’ recent form ahead of their top-flight visit to Arsenal.
Over their past five Premier League fixtures, West Ham have let four points slip courtesy of last-minute equalisers from top four-chasing duo Manchester United and Spurs, and only went down 1-0 at home to leaders Chelsea last time out, when looking the more dangerous side for long periods.
So, what betting lessons can be garnered from their recent form going into this Emirates clash?
For starters, the 39/50 double-chance price about West Ham to be winning or drawing at half time looks very sound.
They’ve managed as much away to Liverpool, Southampton and Spurs, as well as at home against Man Utd, since the end of January, while Arsene Wenger’s side have only gone in ahead at the break once in their past four fixtures all told.
The Gunners tend to get in front by the final whistle though, particularly at home in the league, where they’ve won their past seven matches since going down 2-1 to Louis van Gaal’s men in November.
Such form from each team suggests splitting stakes between Draw/Arsenal and West Ham/Arsenal at 7/2 and 22/1 in bwin.com’s HT/FT market is the best way to chase profits from this capital city derby, while 11/5 on a Gunners victory in which both teams score also holds plenty of appeal.
Irons midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate bagged in both draws against United and Spurs, so 17/2 on him doing so again in north London really should be snapped up.
For the hosts, Olivier Giroud will be raring to go after being left on the bench until the 74th-minute of Arsenal’s 2-1 FA Cup win against the Red Devils at Old Trafford. His indicatively-short 11/10 odds to get on the scoresheet here reflect this.
Sign up with bwin.com today to claim a £30 free bet, which could herald £33 pure profit if placed on Giroud to score at any time and he obliges.