Arsenal vs West Ham United Odds, Pick | Premier League Match Preview
James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images. Pictured: Arsenal standout Gabriel Martinelli.
- Arsenal host West Ham as they look to pick up on their pre-World Cup Premier League surge.
- Will they be able to quickly regain that form?
- BJ Cunningham answers that question and provides his best bet.
Arsenal vs. West Ham United Odds
|West Ham United Odds
|2.5 (-125 / +100)
|Both Teams to Score (Yes/No)
|(-110 / -110)
|Odds via bet365. Get up to the minute soccer odds here.
Arsenal look to remain atop the Premier League table on Boxing Day when they host fellow London club West Ham.
The Gunners went into the World Cup break on top of the Premier League table with 12 wins, one draw and just one defeat over the first three months of the season.
However, they are going up against one of the best defenses in the Premier League without their main striker Gabriel Jesus, so this will be a difficult challenge for Mikel Arteta's side.
West Ham have drastically underperformed this season, as the Hammers are sitting in 15th place and are in desperate need of points. David Moyes has team playing outstanding defensively, but the offense has been lacking, which is a concern considering the talent they have going forward.
Arsenal Riding Strength of Back Line
The reason Arsenal are in first place in the Premier League is because of their defense. The Gunners are only allowing 0.73 npxG per match, have allowed just five big scoring chances all season and are allowing the fewest progressive passes and dribbles per 90 minutes in the Premier League.
Teams have not been able to counter Arsenal successfully because of how good William Saliba, Thomas Partey and Granit Xhaka are at defending in transition, which is what West Ham’s game plan is most likely going to be in this match.
Offensively, Arsenal do have some impressive numbers, as they’re first in npxG and touches in the penalty area. However, Gabriel Jesus is out, which means Eddie Niketah is going to be starting up top. He’s consistently been around a 0.45 xG per 90 minute striker throughout his career and is a downgrade, especially when you are trying to break down a low block.
West Ham Struggling to Secure Results
West Ham have been better offensively since Lucas Paqueta joined the side, and they have underperformed offensively. However, against the big six, they’ve only created 4.9 xG in five matches. The Hammers have also only created 12 big scoring chances on the season and are 17th in touches in the opponents penalty area.
Defensively, Moyes' team is playing just the way he wants them to with a low block that has been incredibly impactful. West Ham have no problem conceding possession, they are second to last in PPDA, they’re playing one of the lowest average defensive lines and their field tilt is 43.2%. Additionally, they’re only allowing 0.89 npxG per match, which is third in the Premier League.
West Ham had three bad games to begin the season where they allowed a total of 5.2 xG against Manchester City, Brighton and Nottingham Forest.
Since that point, only three teams (Liverpool, Manchester United and Leicester City) have created over 1 xG against the Hammers. That's how good their defense has been.
Arsenal vs. West Ham United Pick
With West Ham sitting so deep defensively and not providing much ball pressure out of their low block, the pace of this match is likely going to be very slow.
The Gunners have the second-longest sequence time and third-most 10-plus pass sequences in the Premier League, along with holding an average of 57.8% possession.
With this being a battle between two of the top three defenses in the Premier League, I think the total is a tad inflated.
I only have 2.39 goals projected for this match, so I like the value on the under at +114, which is currently available at FanDuel.
Pick: Under 2.5 (+114)