THE FA Cup continues on Sunday as Shrewsbury welcome West Ham to New Meadow. Ben Levene (@BenLevene96) shares his best bets
Shrewsbury v West Ham| Sunday 7th January 2018, 14:00 | BBC
Shrewsbury sit 2nd in League One and won’t be rollovers but that’s reflected in the price. They’re just 3/1 to cause an upset this Sunday. Their last seven at home have seen Under 2.5 goals. But given it’s a one-off cup tie, Shrewsbury manager Paul Hirst has said he wants to try and be ‘as positive as possible’.
Ayew a threat
The likes of Aaron Cresswell, Michail Antonio and Marko Arnautovic missed West Ham’s trip to Tottenham on Thursday. It’s unlikely they’ll feature this Sunday, with a trip to Huddersfield less than a week away. Nonetheless, Moyes will probably start with either Andy Carroll or Javier Hernandez up top. Regardless of who he goes with, the betting value could lie with Andre Ayew.
The Ghanian scored three goals in four Carabao Cup appearances this season. He averages a goal every 203 minutes this campaign. That figure stood at every 242 minutes last season and 245 the season before. He’s amongst the second tier of players in the goal-scoring market yet is a constant threat. He’s worth keeping on side at 12/5, if he starts you should get a decent run for your money. Ayew is usually restricted to substitute cameos so could benefit from a lengthy period on the pitch.
Goals worth opposing
Although you can make a case for under 2.5 goals, it seems a bit slim at just 17/20. Given it’s a one-off cup tie, a goal can make things very open. We must respect Shrewsbury’s steel, they will be organised and make life tough for the Hammers but at 11/10 West Ham do draw some appeal.
They were able to ease past lower-league opposition in the Carabao Cup without many problems and they should have enough quality on show to suggest there’s some value in the price. With that being said, team selection is difficult to predict so I’ll steer clear of the match result.
Shrewsbury are rightfully rated in the market but that carries over to the both team to score market and I’m not sure that should be the case. Paul Hirt’s sides success has come from defensive solidity and restricting opposition chances. Their best chance of success is doing exactly that, so it’s difficult to see them overcommitting despite his comments.
Salop have scored more than the single goal in just four of their 12 home league games this season and both sides have scored in just two of their 16 home matches in all competitions.
Shrewsbury v West Ham – Both teams to score No (21/20 Bet Victor )
Shrewsbury v West Ham – Andre Ayew to score anytime (12/5 Bet365)