EPL Betting Preview: Liverpool vs. West Ham United – Sunday, Jan 31, 2021

Liverpool West Ham

Winning seven of their last eight games against the Hammers (7-1-0), Liverpool will hope to claim another victory when the Reds travel to face a high-flying West Ham United side at the London Stadium on Sunday, 31 January 2021.

West Ham United Betting Preview

David Moyes’ men won their last Premier League outing 3-2 against their London rivals Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Tuesday to extend their winning form and Tomas Soucek was again the difference maker.

The Hammers were just one point above safety (the relegation zone) in 17th in the Premier League, when David Moyes returned for a second spell at the East London club in December 2019.

Now, a little more than a year later, West Ham United are just two points off their opponents and David Moyes’ men can leapfrog the Reds in fourth place should they emerge victorious from their clash on Sunday.

Unbeaten in eight games, West Ham are enjoying a six-game winning streak and have won their first six competitive games in a single calendar year for the first time in their 120 years history.

The Hammers have won four Premier League games in a row for the first time since December 2018, while manager David Moyes himself has now done so in the competition for the first time since December 2013 when he led Manchester United.

Furthermore, West Ham have the third best home record in the league, picking up 18 points at the London Stadium (5-3-2) and it seems they’ve got the balance in their form as they also enjoy a very decent away record.

With plenty of time to recover from the midweek victory at Crystal Palace, David Moyes is expected to name an unchanged starting XI when his side will take on the reigning champions.

Pablo Fornals, who scored at Anfield earlier in the season, should remain on the wing while Michail Antonio will lead the line, particularly considering Sebastien Haller’s departure.

West Ham’s top goalscorer Tomas Soucek (7 goals in 20 EPL appearances this season) became the fifth Czech Republic player to reach 10 Premier League goals, with the 25 years old midfielder doing so in just 33 appearances, the joint-fewest games taken by a Czech player to hit this milestone (level with former Liverpool forward Milan Baros).

He has been one of the standout performers not only at West Ham, but generally in the Premier League, and Soucek would represent a great challenge to this Liverpool defense, particularly with his set-piece ability.

Meanwhile, the East London side have turned Said Benrahma’s loan into a permanent transfer, paving the way for Jesse Lingard’s anticipated loan deal. The 25-year-old Algerian initially joined on loan from Brentford on deadline day during the summer transfer window, after an issue with his medical almost scuppered the deal.

However, since making his debut against Liverpool on 31 October, the Algerian has registered 14 appearances in all competitions and registered assists for the Premier League victories over Fulham and Aston Villa, as well as in the FA Cup fourth-round win over Doncaster Rovers at the weekend.

With that said, Lingard is now set to complete his loan switch from Manchester United and will join David Moyes’ selection until the end of the season.

David Moyes’ side will head into the weekend with a near-clear bill of health as defender Arthur Masuaku, who underwent a knee surgery in December, continues his recovery.

Moyes’ approach has also been boosted by the return of talismanic forward Michail Antonio, who scored the winners against both Burnley and West Bromwich Albion earlier this month. With five goals in 12 Premier League appearances, Antonio is surely one of the players who can threaten Liverpool’s injury-ridden back line in that game.

Liverpool Betting Preview

Jurgen Klopp’s men will now hope to reignite their winning mojo and their electric display against Spurs is something they would love to carry over at another London venue this weekend.

The Reds have finally returned to winning ways and their performance was quite remarkable, to be honest, considering the fact that Fabinho remained out of the group with a minor muscle injury, while Joel Matip was forced off at the break and the early suggestions are that he could be set for a long recovery with a serious ankle ligament issue.

As Jurgen Klopp revealed on Friday: “there are still glimpses of hope that Matip’s injury is not serious”, yet “”Fabinho no chance for the weekend.”, which could see Jordan Henderson once again starting at centre-back, with either Nathaniel Phillips or Rhys Williams starting alongside the skipper.

Moreover, the injury of Diogo Jota has been a huge loss after an impressive start to his Liverpool career in which he scored nine goals in all competitions, including the winner against West Ham on 31 October.

Sadio Mane has scored his first Premier League goal since the turn of the year and the Senegalese forward will now be keen to score in back-to-back games for the first time since he did so in December, when Mane bagged once for the 7-0 win at Crystal Palace before Christmas and he also opened the score in the disappointing 1-1 draw against West Bromwich Albion at Anfield.

Since he arrived at Anfield in the summer of 2016, Sadio Mane has scored five goals in seven Premier League matches against West Ham and will be keen to add to his tally on Sunday.

It looks like Mohamed Salah is really eager to reignite his scoring form as well, having scored twice against Manchester United last weekend, while his strike against Tottenham was cancelled.

All in all, Salah failed to score in his last six Premier League appearances, starting five of them, and if there are opponents he would like to play against now – West Ham should be on the list.

With Mo Salah on the field, Liverpool are unbeaten in their last seven games against West Ham United (6-1-0) and the Egyptian has scored seven goals against the east London outfit.

Considering Matip’s latest injury setback, Jurgen Klopp will need the efficiency of his attackers more than ever, especially if the Reds don’t sign with a new centre-back in the final hours of the January transfer window.

Divock Origi had a rare chance to start against Burnley (his first Premier League start in 2020-21) and the Belgian forward, who scored some important goals over the past seasons, failed to justify the huge expectations on him.

It’s yet to be seen whether Jurgen Klopp plans to rotate the squad ahead of the coming home match against Brighton only a few days later, with the likes of Origi, Takumi Minamino, Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and Xherdan Shaqiri among the candidates to possibly reshuffle the pack.

Possible Starting Lineups of West Ham United and Liverpool

West Ham United: Lukasz Fabianski – Vladimir Coufal, Craig Dawson, Angelo Ogbonna, Aaron Creeswell – Declan Rice, Tomas Soucek – Jarrod Bowen, Said Benrahma, Pablo Fornals – Michail Antonio. (4-2-3-1)

Liverpool: Alisson – Trent Alexander-Arnold, Nathaniel Phillips, Jordan Henderson, Andy Robertson – Thiago Alcantara, Georginio Wijnaldum, Curtis Jones – Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane. (4-3-3)

Spooky Express Betting Prediction

Contrary to our expectations, The Reds managed to bounce back after a frustrating week, and several tough weeks in general, as they enjoyed a dominant display to win 3-1 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Thursday.

We’ve finally witnessed another electric performance of the Mane-Firmino-Salah trio while Trent Alexander-Arnold also reacted following some pretty controversial efforts over the past weeks. However, it’s yet to be seen how would they look just three days later against a side that would probably go out with a different style and approach.

West Ham are also unbeaten in their last five home matches (3-2-0) and have lost only once in their last 12 games (8-3-1) at the London Stadium in all competitions – a 3-1 defeat to Manchester United on 5 December.

Liverpool, on the other hand, will be looking to win back-to-back Premier League away games for the first time in 2020-21 and their chances are rated at odds of -136 with BetOnline.

Considering Liverpool’s inconsistency away from Anfield and the current form of the home side, it seems that the Hammers could have one of their best chances (you can bet on West Ham at odds of +354 @ BetOnline) to end their winless form against the Merseyside Reds should they find the flow to exploit their defensive crisis.

However, Jurgen Klopp’s men have once again proved that we should never write them off and the recent victory at Tottenham could turn out to be a turning point on their Premier League campaign, especially if they beat West Ham and record consecutive wins for the first time in 2021.

Despite his dreadful record against Liverpool (Moyes has only won five of 34 matches against the Reds and his last Premier League victory over them was back in 2010), West Ham’s boss has some excellent performers and the Hammers surely have the desire to prove they are no pushovers. So goals should be on the menu at the London Stadium on Sunday.

Spooky Express Free Play: Over 2½, 3 (2.75) Goals -118 @ BetOnline for 7/10 Units

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