Both teams head into this rare Thursday night clash on a high after hard-fought wins. Kevin Hatchard expects a competitive London derby.
"West Ham have been a lot more competitive in recent weeks, and they usually push Spurs pretty hard."
Tottenham v West Ham
Thursday 04 January, 20:00
Live on Sky Sports
Spurs on the charge, with Kane in the vanguard
Sometimes in football a mixture of luck and quality can take you a long way. Spurs had both on a windswept Tuesday night in Swansea - Fernando Llorente's headed opener against his old club should've been chalked off because the Spaniard was offside, but there was no disputing Tottenham's outstanding second goal. Harry Kane - only on as a substitute because of illness - produced a delightful floated pass to release Dele Alli, who wrapped up the three points.
Spurs were far from perfect against the Swans, but their victory maintained their momentum after an excellent Christmas period. Burnley and Southampton were swept aside, with Kane scoring hat-tricks in both games. Spurs' star striker now has 18 Premier League goals from 20 appearances this term, and is the top scorer in the division. He is a rather prohibitive 8/15 on the Sportsbook to take the top scorer's title.
Tottenham know they are in a fierce battle for Champions League qualification. Manchester City are over the hills and far away, and Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool are all looking strong. A win over West Ham would lift Spurs to within a point of the top four, and they can ill-afford a repeat of their extraordinary League Cup defeat at home to the Hammers, when they led 2-0 but carelessly slipped to a 3-2 reverse.
Hammers boosted by Carroll's heroics
In any relegation battle there is a slew of dramatic moments that define how the overall picture will develop. One of those took place at the London Stadium on Tuesday night. West Ham were heading for what would have been a battling point at home to fellow strugglers West Brom, but a beautifully controlled side-footed finish from Andy Carroll secured what could prove to be a vital 2-1 win. It was Carroll's second goal of the night - injuries have limited his impact in recent seasons, but he can still be a matchwinner at this level.
The victory lifted the Hammers out of the dropzone, and to give manager David Moyes his due, he has certainly had a positive impact. He arrived at Upton Park laden with baggage from poor spells at Manchester United, Real Sociedad and Sunderland, but West Ham have claimed 11 points from their last six matches. A win at Wembley would take them four points clear of the relegation zone.
One feature of West Ham's games of late is that they have been full of goals. Four of their last five outings have featured three goals or more, and if you look at their last eight away matches in all competitions (including the 3-2 win at Wembley over Spurs), six of them have seen an Over 2.5 Goals bet land.
Tottenham are [1.32] favourites to win this, but there's an argument to say they shouldn't be so short. Since a 4-0 drubbing at Everton in late November, West Ham haven't lost a game by more than one goal, and Spurs haven't beaten West Ham by more than one goal since November 2015.
You could give West Ham a +1.5 cushion on the Asian Handicap, and still get odds of [2.03].
This is one of the most intense London rivalries (more keenly felt by West Ham fans, I suspect), and it's a battle that usually produces goals from both teams. West Ham won 3-2 at Wembley in the League Cup this season, and Spurs won 3-2 at the London Stadium in the league.
Both sides have scored in five of the clubs' last seven meetings, and that outcome is priced at [2.02].
Carroll is priced at a chunky [4.5] to continue his form and score at Wembley. Marko Arnautovic has scored four goals in his last four league games, and is also trading at [4.5].
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Kevin Hatchard 2017-18 Premier League P/L
Points Staked: 33
Points Returned: 40.33
P/L: +7.33 points