Leeds v West Ham Tips: Hosts to be left frustrated by Hammers

Friday night's festivities come from Elland Road and Paul Robinson is expecting a tight game between Leeds and West Ham...

Leeds v West Ham
Friday 11 December, 20:00
Live on Sky Sports

Fixtures beginning to ease at Elland Road

Marcelo Bielsa's side performed with credit at Stamford Bridge, but after taking the lead early, they eventually lost 3-1, which was their third defeat from their last five outings.

Patrick Bamford scored the goal for the Whites, taking his tally to the season to eight in the Premier League. Seven of those came on the road though, and at Elland Road it's just one in five for the striker - with the solo strike coming back in September.

Leeds haven't actually won at home since that day, which was the 4-3 win over Fulham. Since then it's been draws with Man City and Arsenal, with defeats to Wolves and Leicester in-between.

Robin Koch went off injured against Chelsea, so there will be at least one change to the starting XI. I wouldn't expect anything drastic from Bielsa though, as he isn't one to chop and change much.

Hammers hoping to bounce back

David Moyes will be disappointed to have come out on the wrong side of West Ham's match against Manchester United last Saturday evening. His team were well on top in the first half, and went into the break 1-0 up.

They couldn't sustain it in the second half though, as they conceded three goals in the space of 13 minutes, to lose the game 1-3.

The defeat brought their three game winning run to an end, but the performance was good enough to suggest that they are still top half, and even European contenders this season.

Mihail Antonio is still sidelined for the visitors, so Sebastian Haller will once again get the chance to try and make an impact - something which he has struggled with since his opening few games for the Hammers.

Tough to split the two teams

The hosts have won just one of five fixtures at Elland Road since their promotion back to the Premier League, but there are mitigating circumstances.

Leeds have had a very tough run of opponents since that initial victory over Fulham, and it was only really the performance against Leicester which was disappointing.

They are actually the 2.28 favourites for this clash on the Betfair Exchange, but that does seem slightly skinny to me.

The visitors have already won at both Leicester and Sheffield United this term, and they produced a stunning comeback to draw 3-3 at Spurs. A pair of 2-1 defeats at Arsenal (when they were in form) and Liverpool can be forgiven, so I wouldn't rule them out at odds of 3.35.

The draw is the outsider of the party at 3.8, and it might be the best option. I wouldn't bank on lots of goals in this Friday night fixture, and low-scoring affairs are more likely to end all square.

Bamford's home record could be an anomaly, but the team as a whole have struggled to put the ball in the net of late. They haven't scored more than once in any of their last five matches, and at home it's two blanks from four.

The Irons have been in good form, but they only scraped past Fulham, Sheffield United and Villa, and this is arguably a tougher task.

Another low-scorer for Leeds

I have already alluded to the fact that I think this could be an Under 2.5 game, which is in stark contrast to what the layers on the Betfair Exchange are thinking.

My pick is trading at around the 2.42 mark, while Over 2.5 is down at 1.67. I am not concerned by that though, and it just makes the Under a bigger value bet.

There have been three goals or less in three of Leeds' last four on this ground, and while only one of West Ham's five away games have followed suit, there are strong signs that things are drying up for them in front of goal, and Antonio is a big miss.

Key Opta Stat

After winning their first home league game of the season 4-3 against Fulham, Leeds are winless in their last four at Elland Road (D2 L2), netting just two goals in this run.



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