Arsenal v West Ham: Gunners-lite may struggle against resurgent Hammers

Arsene Wenger is using the Carabao Cup to blood youngsters
Arsene Wenger is using the Carabao Cup to blood youngsters

These sides play for the second time in quick succession, this time in the Carabao Cup. Kevin Hatchard thinks West Ham can give an inexperienced Arsenal team a few headaches.

"Arsenal will field a side shorn of their big names, while West Ham have found some confidence and consistency in recent matches."

Back West Ham +1.0 on the Asian Handicap at 2.0621/20

Arsenal v West Ham
Tuesday December 19, 19:45

It wasn't the start to the week we wanted last night, as our boys Panionos took a second-half lead at out-of-form Levadiakos, only to crumble and lose 2-1 courtesy of a 77th-minute winner. Isn't this supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year?

Anyway, we'll switch our attention to more local matters now, and the little matter of a Carabao Cup quarter-final between London rivals Arsenal and West Ham. The Gunners were held to a 0-0 draw at the London Stadium in the league last week, and they are expected to field a far less experienced lineup in this game.

Arsenal have largely kept their biggest names out of the cup competitions, and in this tournament they have given chances to youngsters like striker Eddie Nketiah and wide player Reiss Nelson. As a result their progress in the Carabao Cup has been steady rather than spectacular - they beat Doncaster Rovers 1-0, and needed extra time to see off Norwich City.

Now Arsenal face a West Ham team that has found a bit of stability and much-needed grit since David Moyes replaced Slaven Bilic as manager. They pushed Manchester City hard in a 2-1 defeat, and since then they have beaten Chelsea and Stoke, and drawn with Arsenal. Moyes says that injuries mean he can't rotate his squad much for this game, so the Hammers could well field a decent side. Marko Arnautovic is likely to miss the game because of injury, but Andy Carroll could return, and Javier Hernandez is desperate for another start. There will be a change in goal, with Joe Hart restored after losing his place to Adrian.

West Ham suddenly have a bit of confidence, and they'll be facing an Arsenal side that has quality but that is far from invulnerable. If Wenger once again plays plenty the youngsters, there's an opportunity for the Hammers to cause a shock and reach a rare semi-final. I'll give Moyes' men a one-goal start on the Asian Handicap at 2.0621/20, which means you only lose if they lose by a two-goal margin or greater inside 90 minutes.

Read our Leicester City v Manchester City preview here

2017 FBOTD P/L

Points Staked: 180

Points Returned: 168.75

P/L: -11.25 points

Get a Free £/€20 Exchange Bet

  • Join Now - Open account using promo code VAL225
  • Bet - Place a £/€20 Bet on the Exchange
  • Earn We'll Refund You £/€20 If the Bet Loses

T&Cs apply.

Discover the latest articles

Read past articles