Man United v West Ham
Live on Sky Sports 1
While they recorded a decent win in the Europa League last week, Manchester United's recent record domestically is a poor one. They've won just one of their last seven in the Premier League, and were fairly well-matched at times against Wednesday's opponents in the league at the weekend.
Jose Mourinho is also cutting quite the frustrated figure currently, and his touchline antics are going well beyond the standard distraction measures that he's well known for. The Portuguese is feeling the pressure at the biggest club in the world, and while he knows he'll be given plenty of time, United won't stand for inconsistency, long-term.
An EFL Cup win, while not a priority, wouldn't go amiss - and so a positive result in this game is a must.
In stark contrast to last season, West Ham look a poor side this term. New stadium issues aside, the crop of players Slaven Bilic has at his disposal aren't hitting anywhere near the performance levels they were a year ago, and while it's a stretch to suggest they'll be relegated, fans have a right to feel a bit disappointed, especially with home displays.
However, the Hammers were a real handful at Old Trafford last weekend and were worth their point, despite Darren Randolph bailing them out on more than one occasion. Confidence should and will be drawn from that.
Diafra Sakho and Andy Carroll are missing through injury, the former having picked up a hamstring strain last time out.
Man United start as huge favourites for this one at a quite restrictive [1.5]. For me, that's way too short. I realise that neither team are likely to take this game in a do-or-die fashion, but even with both sides playing weakened teams I can't back a side that have won one of their last seven league games at that price. I know the Hammers aren't great themselves, but they've at least won two of their last seven!
I won't be backing the away team at [7.6], but I am tempted by a lay of Mourinho's men.
The Draw is currently [4.8].
Over/Under 2.5 Goals
The market is expecting goals in this one, with the price on over 2.5 trading at just [1.65]. There's evidence to suggest that we'll see a few on the night, but it's not that compelling. For a value pick I'd back Unders at a far more generous [2.28] and see if it can't be traded after about half an hour.
There's essentially no value at all in backing Overs at that price - the game between these two at the weekend wasn't short of chances; there were no fewer than 23 shots. Yet it only yielded two goals.
The market is so skewed in favour of the home side that West Ham with a two goal start are going to be available to back at [1.8] before kick off. That's some price on a side with a better recent form record than their opponents, opponents who essentially define the term 'unreliable', and who find themselves 11 points off the top of the table already.
I'm tempted by that in a big way.
Luke Moore 2016/17 P/L