Preview and Prediction
The Hammers are suddenly surging up to be one of the potential dark horses this season. David Moyes’ men have been unbeaten in the past three games, including against the high profile teams such as Tottenham and Leicester City. This weekend they are aiming for the bigger target, Manchester City, which has tighter fixtures as UCL has begun. It will be a massive victory if Michael Antonio and Co could thump them.
The teams’ previous games
West Ham was involved in a thriller while taking on Jose Mourinho’s Spurs last weekend. They eventually could muster a 3-3 draw despite conceding three goals at the first half by Son Heung-Min and Harry Kane’s brace. However, they did not lose their confidence and made a superb comeback by Fabian Balbuena’s header, Davinson Sanchez’s own goal and Manuel Lanzini’s long shot.
Manchester City began their Champions League campaign this season with a 3-1 win over Porto in the midweek. Yet, the victory was not easily secured. Pep Guardiola’s men had to struggle and even had one goal behind as Luis Diaz gave Porto the lead. The Citizens finally equalised by Sergio Aguero’s penalty. In the second half, they had to rely on set piece again as Ilkay Gundogan scored through his free kick. In the end, the substitute Ferran Torres doubled their lead on 73rd minute.
David Moyes seems to be more confident with his 5-4-1 formation. However, Michael Antonio and his reserved forward, Sebastian Haller, might have to miss out the game due to their injury. Thus, playing Jarred Bowen or Manuel Lanzini as the false nine seems considerable. In the midfield, Tomas Soucek, Declan Rice, Pablo Fornals and Andrey Yarmolenko or Robert Snodgrass will be keeping the balance on their defence and offence
There have been a number of key players ruled out in Guardiola’s squad for this upcoming match. Kevin de Bruyne, Fernandinho, Gabriel Jesus, Aymeric Laporte, Benjamin Mendy and Nathan Ake are sidelined due to their injury. Therefore, his 4-3-3 will be incomplete, especially on the defence line. At the front, Raheem Sterling, Phil Foden and Sergio Aguero are the best options available at the moment, whereas Kyle Walker, Eric Garcia, Ruben Dias and Olexander Zinchenko will get the nod to keep the clean sheet as last week.
Players to watch
The Czech Republic international, Tomas Soucek has been irreplaceable figure in the midfield since his arrival last season. His defensive midfielder role alongside Declan Rice help The Hammers to build a more solid defending side.
The newly appointed captain, Raheem Sterling, is likely to be the possible key figurez of the team, alongside the Germany international Ilkay Gundogan and Rodrigo. Another notable name to watch is their new signings, Ruben Dias.
West Ham vs Manchester City Prediction
The Citizens may be the favourite here but the game could be in favour of the home side, especially considering their last outing against Porto. Bernardo Silva and Co were closed down from all sides most of the time, without a single chance to control the ball. If such could be deployed by David Moyes’s men, snatching a point seems quite doable here.
According to the punters, Manchester City are projected to win at 4/9, whereas The Hammers’ odds to win are at 7/1. The draw result is at the value of 9/2.