West Ham vs Man City Odds, Picks, Predictions | Premier League Preview
Eddie Keogh/Getty. Pictured: Jarrod Bowen.
West Ham vs Man City Odds
|West Ham Odds||+600|
|Man City Odds||-223|
|Over / Under|
-175 / +137
West Ham look to stay unbeaten when they welcome the defending champions Man City to the London stadium.
TheHammers have had a flying start to the season, with three wins in their first four matches. Included in those were a 3-0 beatdown at the Amex over Brighton and a home 3-1 over Chelsea. The Hammers have made a lot of acquisitions this summer to replace the loss of Declan Rice and it seems Moyes has retooled his squad for another charge at finishing in the top six.
Man City got a resounding 5-1 over Fulham before the international break. Pep Guardiola has been at home recovering from back surgery and his team has not missed a beat. The Cityzens begin their Champions League title defense on Tuesday against Red Star Belgrade and they have some injuries to deal with, so this isn't the best of spots for them.
Let's get into my West Ham vs Man City pick.
Even though West Ham lost Declan Rice, the signings they brought in have made a lot of sense. You cannot replace Rice with just one player because of how good he is as a defender and a ball progressor. So instead, West Ham went out and got an elite defensive ball stopper in Edinson Alvarez from Ajax and a fantastic attack-minded midfielder who also happens to be a world class free kick taker in James Ward-Prowse from Southampton.
The match against Brighton is a perfect example of how West Ham can be successful in this match. Moyes had his team sit in an extremely narrow defensive shape and they made it almost impossible for the Seagulls to find space in between the lines. Edson Alvarez is the key to all of this working covering the opposing striker and being the main man in the middle of the low block that cuts every pass through the middle off.
Brighton-West Ham Tactical Analysis (a thread)
How David Moyes out thought Roberto De Zerbi:
▪️ Excellent Edson Alvarez covering Ferguson and Welbeck
▪️ Narrow man-to-man structure cutting off Brighton's central midfield
▪️ Paqueta-Bowen covering inverted full-backs pic.twitter.com/CL46j2jjoJ
— Dharnish (@dharnishiqbal) August 31, 2023
That has forced a lot of West Ham's opponents to play the ball wide and try to beat them via crosses. West Ham's opponents have attempted 129 crosses, but have only completed 18 of them.
Once they have won the ball they have been deadly in transition. Against Brighton they took just 12 shots, but created four big scoring chances and 3 xG in a counterattacking masterclass. With players like Lucas Paqueta, Ward-Prowse Jarrod Bowen and now Mohamed Kudus from Ajax, the Hammers have the personnel to create some transitional moments against the best defensive team in the world.
While City won 5-1 against Fulham and have won their first four Premier League matches, there are some concerning signs for the best team in the world.
First off, they really miss Kevin De Bryune. Not only did De Bruyne lead them in assists and passes into the penalty area, but he was a key man that defenders had to key on and often times double team. So, what Guardiola has done recently is moved De Bruyne's positioning to a wide side of the pitch because teams often use a defensive midfielder or center back to man mark him.
That pulls one of the opposing team's best defenders out of the middle of the pitch and leaves space for City's other attackers to find space to get the ball to Haaland. City don't have player like De Bruyne to play that role, which has meant Julian Alvarez has had to drop deeper to connect the play between the midfield and the last line of defense.
Second off, the loss of İlkay Gündoğan is very evident with City because they don't have a box invading midfielder that can come occupy the space that Haaland and the other forwards create. Rodri has had to play that role because Mateo Kovacic is more of a defensive midfielder. I think that is a reason why they went out and spent a lot of money on Matheus Nunes from Wolves.
City may have scored five goals against Fulham, but it was off just six shots, which is very concerning when they were facing one of the worst defensive teams in the Premier League.
West Ham vs Man City
Pick & Prediction
This isn't the best of spots for Manchester City, who have injuries to John Stones, De Bruyne, Jack Grealish and Kovacic to deal with in a sandwich spot with their first Champions League match on Tuesday.
West Ham have shown an elite ability to be a low block counterattacking team and the signings they've made this summer have shown that is exactly the identity they want to have. They proved themselves by beating both Brighton and Chelsea and they have the style of play to frustrate the best team in the world.
I only have Manchester City's spread projected at -1.12, so I like the value on the Hammers +1 at +115.