DANIEL MCCULLOCH (@Danmcc84) has scoured the markets ahead of tonight's Premier League contest between West Ham and Stoke.
West Ham v Stoke | Monday 16th March 2018, 20:00 | Sky Sports
When reviewing this game my initial thoughts were that anything above Evens on West Ham represented value. Since David Moyes arrived in East London, their home record reads four wins, four draws and two defeats. Their opponents, Stoke City, have won just one away game all season, so I certainly won’t be making a case for them to emerge victorious here but I can’t get away from the nagging thought that they are ‘due’ a win.
Whilst the Potters form is not great – they have not won in their last nine matches – I believe recent performances have been better than is perceived. They have lost their last two home games by two goals to one. The first loss came at home to Everton when they were down to ten men for 60 minutes (when the game was goalless) and I do not believe they would have lost the game had they been able to keep 11 men on the field.
Last week they lost by the same scoreline to Tottenham and actually had as many shots on target as their opponents and also had a marginal expected goals victory. In between those matches they lost 3-0 to Arsenal at The Emirates but they were very much in that game before three goals in the final 15 minutes – two of them were penalties – consigned them to defeat.
Defensively Stoke have been very poor this season. They have conceded a league-high 63 goals and also faced 192 shots on their goal (5.8 a game), which is 27 more than any other side. Therefore it’s very difficult to make a case for Stoke winning this game, but I do believe that Both Teams To Score (10/11 with William Hill) can be a profitable outcome.
Since Paul Lambert took over the Staffordshire club, they have scored in six of their ten matches. Moreover, nine of their 16 away games have seen both sides find the net, whilst across the season, 18 of 33 games (55%) have. 18 of West Ham’s 32 games (56%) have also seen such a bet emerge victorious so given that the 10/11 implies that this needs to come in 53% of the time for you to make a profit, I am happy to take a chance here.
There are also a couple of goalscorer bets I like. I tipped up Marko Arnautovic to find the net when The Hammers hosted Southampton a couple of weeks ago and I also like the look of the Austrian at 6/4 to score here tonight. He has found the net nine times since David Moyes became West Ham manager and is clearly the focal point of his sides attack. Only a fine tackle from N’Golo Kante prevented him from scoring the potential winner at Stamford Bridge last week and I think he will be a constant menace to a porous Stoke backline.
He scored against his former club back in December and I think he will do so again tonight. Boylesports are offering 6/4 and I am more than happy with that. Don't forget we are giving away £50 in cash if the Austrian scores first!
For Stoke, Xherdan Shaqiri is the likely source of any goalscoring exploits the Potters may have. He has found the net three times in Lambert’s ten matches and has hit the woodwork in his last two matches against Arsenal at Tottenham. At 10/3 with Marathon Bet I think he is value to go one better this evening.
West Ham v Stoke – Both Teams To Score (10/11 William Hill)
West Ham v Stoke – Marko Arnautovic to score anytime (6/4 Boylesports)
West Ham v Stoke – Xherdan Shaqiri to score anytime (10/3 Marathon Bet)