Tottenham v West Ham
Sunday October 18, 16:30
Life a bit rosier for Mourinho
Maybe Tottenham’s decision to get Jose Mourinho on board wasn’t that silly after all.
They were poor last season, no doubt about that, but now that he has a better understanding of his playing resources and how he wants them to play, they could be a good side this year, especially if their key players can stay fit for a change. One also has to think that he played some sort of role in Gareth Bale’s return to the club and things are all of a sudden looking a lot brighter, especially after that hammering they gave Manchester United at Old Trafford last time out.
Giovani Lo Celso misses out with injury, Bale may well play some part in the game but it’s a bit ambitious to think he might start.
West Ham in fine fettle
It’s hard to know what to make of West Ham so far. There’s nothing wrong with a tenth place in the league and though the result flattered them if the stats are anything to go by, not many teams are going to go and beat Wolves 4-0 this season. For good measure, they then went on and beat Leicester 3-0 away from home, so they’re certainly one of the league’s in-form sides.
The latter part of the transfer window saw Felipe Anderson move on loan to FC Porto and Jack Wilshere leave the club by mutual concept. The second exit is perfectly understandable but one wonders why they were keen to let one of their most creative players leave like that. It wasn’t that long ago that he was their key man in attack.
There are a few reasons why we’re not siding with Spurs at 4/61.66. One is the fact that they’re yet to win on home soil in two attempts this season, another is that West Ham (5/15.8) have had plenty of joy here over the years, winning five times at White Hart Lane, their second favourite (away) hunting ground in the Premier League after Fulham’s Craven Cottage.
Then of course there’s West Ham’s excellent form we just mentioned, so it may not be too wise to be taking an odds-on price about Spurs.
I’m not sure why ‘unders’ is such an outsider here. In the past six played between these two in the league, four have gone ‘unders’ and for Spurs games it’s two going ‘overs’ and two going ‘unders’ for the season as far as Spurs are concerned in the league. And though for West Ham, it’s three ‘overs’ and one ‘unders’, that’s still not reason enough to justify a price of 6/42.52 on unders. It would be no surprise if David Moyes adopts a very pragmatic approach here of just playing for a low-scoring draw.
Of course, the counter-argument to that is that Spurs have some very in-form forwards but then again, they don’t need to win the game convincingly; they just need to win. It’s definitely a value price.
It’s worth remembering that Son Heung-min is the league’s joint-top scorer alongside Dominic Calvert-Lewin.
Admittedly, four of those goals were in one game and he’s still to score at White Hart Lane this term but he’s obviously in fantastic form at the moment.
If anything, the new system whereby Harry Kane seems to be dropping deeper to provide service for the other forwards may just play beautifully into the hands of the likes of Son, Bale and somewhere down the line, Carlos Vinicius. It certainly worked for Son in that game at Southampton where Kane set him up four times.
So I like Son’s chances of opening the scoring here at 7/2. It makes more sense to go with him on that market than the anytime scorer one, if we think it’s going to be low-scoring.