West Ham v Crystal Palace: Zaha can fire Palace to another away win

Outsiders Crystal Palace are worth a bet in Wednesday night's Premier League London derby against West Ham says Andrew Atherley...

West Ham v Crystal Palace
Wednesday 16 December, 20:00
Live on Amazon Prime Video

Extra rest for Hammers

West Ham have had an extra two days' rest over their opponents for this midweek match, having last played on Friday night when they won 2-1 at Leeds.

That victory, the fourth in their last five matches, left them sixth in the Premier League table at the end of the weekend.

David Moyes has quite a settled starting XI, although he is currently missing a couple of regulars in forward Michail Antonio and defender Arthur Masuaku.

A 4-2-3-1 shape looks likely, possibly with Manuel Lanzini coming into the side in place of Said Benrahma.

Palace rollercoaster

Crystal Palace have been on a rollercoaster of form and it was exemplified again on Sunday when they trailed 1-0 at home to Tottenham at half-time before a strong second-half performance earned them a point with Jeffrey Schlupp's equaliser.

That left them 11th at the end of the weekend with a mixed record of W5 D2 L5.

Partly that is explained by Wilfried Zaha's absence for two matches, both of which followed the long-standing pattern of ending in defeat for Palace.

Roy Hodgson has kept the same starting XI for the last two games but the quick turnaround might well prompt him to make some changes.

The most likely to come in are Andros Townsend and Jairo Riedewald, who were late subs on Sunday for Eberechi Eze and Luka Milivojevic.

Another potential switch is Jordan Ayew in place of Christian Benteke up front.

Palace to cause problems

West Ham's recent burst of form has brought wins at home over Fulham (1-0) and Aston Villa (2-1) and away at Sheffield United (1-0) and Leeds (2-1).

Three of those teams are currently in the bottom seven and the run was broken up by a 3-1 home defeat by Manchester United (eighth), which indicates a possible lack of substance to their form.

The Hammers' record against the top 12 is W2 D2 L3.

In the last five games when Palace have had a draw or win, their next performance has been worse on four occasions (three have been defeats) and that inconsistency is what has kept them anchored in mid-table despite some excellent results.

Hodgson's side have been good enough to take points off current high-flyers Tottenham and Southampton but have also lost to Burnley and Newcastle without scoring.

The inconsistency has been evident on the road, with three wins and three defeats from six trips, and with 10 goals for and 10 against.

The key has been whether Palace score, with their three defeats all to nil. Their overall record when scoring this season is W5 D2 L1.

Furthermore, their record when scoring on the road since the start of last season is W8 D4 L1.

West Ham are likewise pretty reliant on keeping a clean sheet (two wins out of eight when their opponents have scored), although arguably that is shifting as their last two wins have been 2-1 (against Aston Villa and Leeds).

Taking a slight chance on whether Palace will have recovered as well as the Hammers from the last match, the away win appeals at 3.9.

West Ham still do not look watertight, having shut out only Fulham and Sheffield United in their last eight games, and they could have problems against the Palace counter-attack.

Palace to win with Zaha to score at anytime is worth considering at almost 6/1 on the Same Game Multi on Betfair Sportsbook.

High goals figures

West Ham rank high for over 2.5 goals, with eight of their 12 games (67%) having gone that way.

Two of the exceptions were 1-0 wins against low-scoring strugglers Fulham and Sheffield United.

Palace sit in the middle of the goals range (50% overs, 50% unders) but the figure is 67% in away games and is also high when they score on the road.

Over 2.5 goals looks the call at 2.02.

Opta Stat

West Ham boss David Moyes has won 60% of his Premier League matches against Crystal Palace's Roy Hodgson (P10 W6 D1 L3), his best ratio against any of the 15 managers he's faced at least 10 times in the competition. The Hammers are 2.16 to win.

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