Premier League Odds & Pick for West Ham United vs. Manchester United: Hammers Can Top Visiting Man U
Peter Byrne/Pool/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: West Ham United standout Tomáš Souček.
- Manchester United travel to play West Ham on Sunday in East London.
- Cristiano Ronaldo netted two goals in his Premier League return for the Red Devils last week.
- Anthony Dabbundo gives his best bet for the Premier League match below.
West Ham vs. Man U Odds
|West Ham Odds||+340|
|Manchester United Odds||-130|
|Over/Under||2.5 (-135 / +105)|
|Day | Time||Sunday | 9 a.m. ET|
|How To Watch||NBCSN | fuboTV|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute soccer odds here.|
Cristiano Ronaldo netted two goals in his Premier League return for Manchester United in the Red Devils 4-1 win against Newcastle last Saturday. The next challenge for United following a midweek defeat to Young Boys in the Champions League is a road trip to East London and West Ham United.
The Hammers started the PL season with two convincing victories against Newcastle and Leicester City, but their performances have suffered in the last two matchweeks with draws against Crystal Palace and Southampton.
Despite their two losses, Manchester United is running way too hot in front of goal and West Ham is one of the best counterattacking teams in the English top flight. That presents significant challenges for a United side that has looked very vulnerable in defensive transition early this season.
The Hammers should be able to attack this United defense and get a result at home. The market is showing too much respect to United and Ronaldo on Sunday.
West Ham Might be the Best of the Rest
West Ham have made a strong case that they might be the best of the rest behind the clear top 4 in the PL this season with their early season performances. Always good on the counter, the excellent early season play of Jarrod Bowen and Pablo Fornals have helped the Hammers offense take a step forward. The addition of Kurt Zouma to the defense should improve the defending as well. Bowen has averaged 0.4 expected goals + expected assists per 90.
They struggled a bit against Palace and Southampton, but have frequently challenged the top four sides with their ability to get out in transition. My projections have them as the fifth best team in the PL, marginally ahead of Spurs, Leicester and Arsenal for the best of the rest.
Michail Antonio will miss this match and he’s certainly a crucial loss at the heart of the Hammers attack, but the improved play of Bowen, Said Benrahma and Fornals can help to make up for the lost production without Antonio.
Manchester United Still Missing Something in the Midfield
United made significant transfer window improvements to try to consistently produce more offense this season. Adding Ronaldo from Juventus and Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund significantly aided their striker and winger issues. But the Red Devils didn’t really address the biggest need in their squad in central midfield. United badly needed a ball-winning defensive midfielder to break up play, aid their defensive transition and serve as a pivot in possession.
The injury to Scott McTominay has left manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer playing Fred and Paul Pogba in a double pivot and they’ll looked vulnerable in transition against both Wolves and Newcastle. They were lucky to not concede against Wolves and lose that game, and Newcastle had multiple dangerous counters break down in the final third. The Magpies did ultimately score, but United’s four goals from 2.2 xG proved enough to secure all three points.
Offensive over performance has been the story of United’s first four PL games. They have 11 goals from 5.8 expected goals in open play. Some would make the claim that this shows how United is simply better at finishing because it has better players, but that hasn’t been the case this year.
United only has 4.7 post-shot expected goals, meaning their shooting has actually been below average. It’s been opposition goalkeeping that has bailed out the Red Devils. No team has been the beneficiary of poor shot stopping than United thus far this year. The Red Devils scored five on opening day from 1.9 PSxG against Leeds. Then they scored four from 1.9 PSxG against Newcastle. United managed to beat Wolves on a goalie error, too.
If Solskjaer plays the Fred and Pogba pivot, they’ll be vulnerable to concede big chances on the counter. And eventually, their luck in front of goal will run out and they’ll need to actually produce more consistent offense.
Betting Analysis & Pick
My projections make Manchester United +120 to win this game, which leaves the Hammers at -120 to get at least a draw. I’d play anything even money or better on West Ham.
Add in their specific stylistic ability to run at United’s weak defensive midfield and expose the team in transition and this is an excellent matchup. United has much better individual talent, but West Ham is the more cohesive unit with a plan to produce attacks. As a pure engine room, pressing and ball winning duo, Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice are the better midfield in this game, even if Manchester United has talent edges everywhere else on the pitch.
Pick: West Ham +0.5 (+100 or better)