Sports Betting Weekly

Tottenham Hotspur v West Ham

When: Sunday, 22 February 2015 @ 18:00 (FINISHED)
Where: White Hart Lane
They say pride comes before a fall – and in terms of talking yourself up before crashing to defeat, West Ham boss Sam Allardyce couldn’t have timed his comments about being one of the league’s best managers any worse as his side were thumped 4-0 by West Brom in the F.A. Cup straight after.

Certainly, such a heavy reverse coupled with undoubtedly West Ham’s worst performance of the season will have been a chastening blow for Allardyce and he’ll want his charges to bounce back quickly – but against Tottenham they face one of the Premier League’s in-form sides at present.

Having not lost at home in the league since November last year, Mauricio Pochettino’s men go into the tie as rightful 4/5 favourites – with the visitors priced as 15/4 outsiders and the draw at 29/10 – but they may not represent an instant mortgage job given they’ve lost three of their last four games against West Ham in all competitions, including a 3-0 reverse in this same fixture last season.

While Spurs are definitely a more cohesive unit under Pochettino, their odds-on favourite tag actually seems to offer very little value in this one and you may be better placed backing either a correct scoreline or the total goals market. As we’ve highlighted before, Spurs have an unerring tendency to win games 2-1 this season – with eight of their 13 league wins coming by that scoreline – and they are 8/1 to do so again here, with West Ham 15/1 to inflict a defeat by the same margin.

In terms of goals, Tottenham have scored in every single one of their league and cup games this year, while the two teams have kept just three clean sheets between them in 12 Premier League fixtures since the start of 2015. As such, it looks highly likely that the game will feature more than 2.5 goals at 3/4, while “both teams to score – yes” may also offer some odds-on value at 8/11.

Interestingly, no team in the top division has drawn more games that West Ham in their last six – and with 1-1 seemingly their preferred scoreline, you can get 15/2 on the same outcome in this one. The flipside to this is, of course, that no Premier League team has drawn fewer games than Tottenham in the current campaign, so you may be better off hedging your bets by backing the home side to concede the first goal and go on to win or draw the match at attractive odds of 18/5.

In terms of backing a first goalscorer, the ever-reliable Harry Kane is once again the bookies’ favourite at 7/2 – a price that actually looks fairly generous given he is only 4/1 to score twice or more in the game, which is a feat he has achieved in three of his last six Premier League appearances.