For the first time in the history of the Premier League, this season there will be a winter break. However, unlike other countries which sees all teams given a number of weeks off, in the EPL it will work differently.
There will be a number of the teams given this weekend off, with the remainder of the teams given the following weekend off. The pick of this weekend’s fixtures will see Manchester City looking to get back to winning ways against West Ham United at the Etihad.
When: Sunday 9th February
Where: Etihad Stadium
Moneyline: Manchester City (-1000) Draw (+825) West Ham United (+1700)
City Looking To Rediscover Form
Manchester City’s form has been sliding over recent weeks, as they have surrendered the Premier League title to Liverpool. There is no secret that the title race is now over, with Jurgen Klopp’s side holding a healthy 22-point advantage over the current champions. Pep Guardiola will be hoping that his side can build their momentum, however, as they have their sights set on the Champions League.
They have been boosted by the return of Aymeric Laporte, while Leroy Sane may also only be a month away from full fitness. The Citizens have failed the score in their last two matches, as they have fallen to defeat in both. The first of those defeats came against Manchester United before they were beaten 2-0 in the EPL by Tottenham Hotspur. City were unfortunate not to have got anything from that game as they bossed proceedings, but they didn’t take their chances when they got them. This shouldn’t be a tricky assignment for the Citizens against the Hammers.
Hammers Looking To Fight Off Relegation
West Ham’s fortunes have been uninspiring since the return to the club of David Moyes. They won his first game in charge against Bournemouth, but since then they have failed to win in five EPL games. During that run, the Hammers have lost three times, and that sees them enter this weekend in the relegation places.
Their last outing in the Premier League shows exactly why they are where they are. They squandered a 2-0 lead to draw 3-3 with Brighton & Hove Albion at the London Stadium. West Ham were the victims of their own downfall as they made two huge defensive mistakes to let the Seagulls back into the game before Glenn Murray scored the equalising goal with ten minutes remaining. They will have to be much stronger at the back if they are to have any chance against City.
Head To Head
West Ham doesn’t have a very good record against the Citizens, as they have been beaten on 57 previous occasions. The Hammers have recorded 37 wins, while there have been 17 draws. The last meeting between the two sides came on the opening day of the season when City ran out 5-0 winners. Raheem Sterling scored a hat-trick, while Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero also found the net.
This shouldn’t be a difficult game for Manchester City to win. They will be handed a lot of chances by a struggling West Ham backline, while Sterling’s impressive scoring record against the Hammers may give him the perfect opportunity to end his goalscoring drought.
Tip: Manchester City to win and Raheem Sterling to score.