West Ham v Crystal Palace
Saturday October 5, 17:30
Live on Sky Sports
How far can Pellegrini take West Ham?
An abysmal Carabao Cup performance aside, it's been a very good start to the season for West Ham. They head into the weekend sitting in fifth place in the league, and their only defeat came in their opening match against Manchester City.
Manuel Pellegrini has put together quite an attractive, attacking team. Sebastien Haller leads the line, and he is flanked by Yarmolenko and Anderson. Throw in Manuel Lanzini and Pablo Fornals in midfield, and you have quite a formidable outfit.
The other positive for Pellegrini is that his defence have kept clean sheets in three of their six outings since the City defeat. Two of those have come in their last two home matches, and they will fancy their chances of keeping another one this weekend.
The only negative in that regard is that goalkeeper, Lukasz Fabianski, has been ruled out for three months after suffering an injury against Bournemouth. Other than that, it should be a pretty similar XI that played against the Cherries, although Manuel Lanzini could well come back in ahead of Fornals.
A start to build on for Hodgson
Crystal Palace have gone slightly under the radar this season, and considering that Wilfried Zaha is yet to open his account, the so called "one-man team" are doing well to be in the top half of the table.
Roy Hodgson's men beat Norwich 2-0 last Saturday, and prior to that they drew 1-1 with Wolves. Both of those games were at Selhurst Park, and while they are back on the road this weekend, Palace have proven to be quite strong away from home.
Admittedly this season it's one win and two defeats from three away matches, but they have had to go to Bramall Lane, Old Trafford and the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. It's also worth remembering that eight of their 14 victories last term came on their travels.
As far as the team news goes, the only major absentee for Palace is Luka Milivojevic, who picked up his fifth booking of the season against the Canaries last week.
Take the odds-against on West Ham
The hosts are the favourites for this clash, but they aren't odds-on. They are trading at around the 2.0421/20 mark on the Betfair Exchange, and that screams value to me.
A pair of 2-0 wins in their last two games at the London Stadium, have banished the memory of the 5-0 thrashing they received from Man City, and in truth, they didn't play too badly that day, despite the result.
The draw is available to back at 3.814/5, which is quite big solely on the basis that five of the 14 matches these two clubs have played this season have ended all square.
That being said, I believe that the Hammers are the ones to be on here. Palace at 4.03/1 don't appeal at all, and they are certainly hindered by the absence of Milivojevic.
Opta also tells us that West Ham United are unbeaten in their last eight Premier League games against Crystal Palace (W4 D4 L0) since losing 3-1 in February 2015.
Leicester City are being touted as potential top four candidates this year, but I wouldn't rule out West Ham either, and they should pick up plenty of wins in front of their own fans as they now appear to have bedded in to their new surroundings.
Layers undecided on goals
The Over/Under 2.5 Goals market is pretty tight for this clash, with the former being the marginal favourite at 1.9210/11. The latter is 2.0621/20.
This season's stats are pointing towards the Under, as West Ham have had four out of seven end with two goals or fewer - including their last two in this stadium.
Palace, meanwhile, have had five out of seven go under, and with an average of 1.86 goals per 90 minutes, their matches are the lowest-scoring in the division.
For me though, I would much rather back a home win than either of the above, at a very similar price. This could be low-scoring or high-scoring, and it's not a call I am willing to bet on.
Sebastian Haller has been playing well without being overly prolific since his move to East London from Eintracht Frankfurt. He does have three in six, but he has now gone three without a goal.
He has a great opportunity to get back on the goal-trail against a Palace defence that have conceded six times in three away games, and over on the Betfair Sportsbook you can back him to find the net first and West Ham to win 2-0 at 37.07.
Listen to Betfair's Footbal...Only Bettor below for more best bets and tips for this Premier League weekend.