West Ham vs Leeds | Monday 8th March 2021, 20:00 | Sky Sports
I wanted to get with West Ham for Monday night football, but I am not sure I trust them to beat a Leeds side which are still surprising teams this season.
I have West Ham as the 10th best home side and expected points supports this with them 9th, despite them sitting 2nd in the home PPG. Leeds, I have as the 12th best away side with expected points having them occupying the same position and 10th on away PPG. These are two evenly matched sides.
What I can’t ignore are the basic stats though. Leeds have conceded 44 goals this season, the same as Sheff Utd, Newcastle and Saints and only WBA have conceded more. On the road only Saints have conceded more (by 1 goal) and they got done 9-0 at Old Trafford. It’s a Leeds side that give away far too many chances.
No side has a higher away xGA with 1.99, no side concedes more shots or SOT and they sit 13th for shots in the box conceded. Despite conceding an average of 2.08 per away game they do have 4 CS this season – Everton where they conceded a xG of 1.9 with 17 shots and 8 SOT, Sheff Utd who also managed an impressive xG of 1.28 without scoring and then Villa who were pretty poor on the night with a xG of just 0.74 and the whipping boys WBA.
Only Sheff Utd have conceded more headed goals this season whereas only Everton have scored more headed goals than West Ham. Again, only Everton have scored more goals from corners than the Hammers.
In fact, no side has conceded more goals from set pieces than Leeds this season. I think it’s unlikely that West Ham with players like Soucek, Dawson and Diop won’t be getting on the end of crosses and set pieces. I would not put anyone off these players as a great 1st goalscorer each way bet at 9.0, 29.0 and 34 respectively.
However, I am going to play it a little more cautiously and take West Ham to score twice or more. They have only failed to find the net once at home this season in the opening game of the season to Newcastle, since then they have scored 12 of 12 games even though Antonio has been missing for a lengthy spell.
In the home games that he has played they have P8 W5 D1 L2 scoring 1.5+ in 50%. Defeats where on the opening day to Newcastle and 3-1 to Liverpool, whilst they drew 1-1 with City.
The Hammers have a xGA of 1.44 at home with an average of 1.62 goals scored and sit midtable for SOT and shot in the box, against a Leeds side that give up so many chances I think this looks a sensible bet.
The other bet I like I will be heading to Bet365 bet builder and taking both sides over 0 cards each and both sides over 3 corners each. Firstly, its Mike Dean in charge. He loves the limelight, and I am confident that he will turn up here making sure he is centre stage.
He has taken charge of 17 PL games this season and handed out an average of 3.53 cards per match but has booked both sides at least once in 15 of his 17 games. He has already taken charge of one game each for the Hammers, in which he gave them 3 yellows and 1 red and Leeds where he dished out 2 yellows for them.
The hosts have collected 1+ cards in 7 of 13 home games this season and Leeds have collected 1+ in 10/13. Leeds hosts have collected at least a yellow in 8/13 and West Ham’s visitors 9/13. Leeds sit 5th for the most fouls committed in away games and the highest for most tackles attempted so lots of opportunity for Dean to get his cards out for them.
Soucek commits 1.8 fouls per game, which is the 4th highest in the division and with the pace of Raphinha and Harrison we should see opportunity for cards in the Hammers full backs.
The corners seem to flow in Leeds games. There were 11 corners in the return fixture with both sides getting 5+. The Hammers average 10.15 match corners this season and have hit 4 or more in 9/13 – They hit 3 vs Villa and WBA and were short against Wolves and City. Their opposition have hit 4 or more in 10/13 – WBA (1) Palace (3) and Wolves (3). They average 5.08 for and 5.08 against.
Leeds have hit 4 or more in 11/13 – Liverpool (0) and Everton (2) and have allowed their opponents 4 or more in 10/13 – Palace (3) WBA (3) and Spurs (3). If sides like Palace and WBA are hitting 3 each then West Ham should be able to hit 4. Leeds average 5.69 corners on the road and allow 5.92
Leeds games are always open, and I see no reason why that will change here. Regardless of the score Leeds will continue to push forward in what should be a good game to watch.