Manchester City vs West Ham preview, betting tips and prediction: City to prove to strong for battling Hammers
Manchester City to win 3-0 @ 13/2 with Coral
Raheem Sterling to score first @ 4/1 with Coral
Manchester City to win and BTTS @ 27/20
It is a pretty daunting task for any side heading to the Etihad Stadium right now, not least one looking for a first win under a new manager. David Moyes will have seen some encouraging signs when his West Ham side hosted, and drew with, Leicester last week. The organisation and effort was there for the most part, and the previously volatile atmosphere at the London Stadium subsided as the fans really got behind the team. But it will be a completely different test when they travel to face a side who are making history with the football they are playing right now.
Pep Guardiola’s City side are top of the Premier League by eight points and already look uncatchable for any of the chasing pack. The greatest achievement for Guardiola has arguably been the impact he has had on Raheem Sterling. Previously a sporadic, inconsistent winger with a questionable end product, Guardiola has transformed the England international; at the time of writing he has 8 Premier League goals to his name. Guardiola’s style means that the wide men play a crucial role, we think they will win this game and that Sterling could make another huge contribution.
It will take a lot more than a battling display and result against Leicester, another side in the Premier League’s bottom half, to convince everyone that Moyes is turning things around at West Ham. They just haven’t got going at all. In the last six games, four of which were managed by his predecessor Slaven Bilic, West Ham have won just once, and that came in the Carabao Cup against Tottenham, conceding 12 league goals in that time. That is hardly great preparation for facing a side averaging three goals per game domestically and in Europe this season.
For all the talk of their attacking prowess, City showed a more steely side in the narrow win over Huddersfield on Sunday afternoon. Not only did they come from behind, but they went the distance and won the game in the dying minutes, courtesy of Sterling. But, over the last six games, they have still shown why they are so far ahead even if their goalscoring exploits from earlier on in the campaign have slowed down, with a 100% record. In fact, they haven’t so much as drawn since August.
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West Ham will definitely be without defender Jose Fonte, who will be missing until January, and more crucially Javier Hernandez is a doubt with a hamstring problem. The Mexican international could make it, and Moyes will be hoping he does to offer more of a goal threat up front. Fullback Sam Byram is battling to recover from a thigh strain but he, like Hernandez, could play some part at least.
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John Stones is still missing for City, so Nicolas Otamendi will be partnered by captain Vincent Kompany once again. Gabriel Jesus could be in line for a start despite Sergio Aguero equalising at Huddersfield, with the Argentine playing the last two games.