Premier League Match Preview: West Ham United vs. Southampton

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Updated: February 17, 2014
West Ham

Match Date: 22 February 2014 (local)

Match Venue: Upton Park

 

West Ham United

James Collins and Mohamed Diame made sure that West Ham will remain unbeaten for a fourth consecutive match after they trounced struggling Norwich City with a clean sheet at the Boleyn Ground last week. The visitors would have conquered the fight after creating most of the better openings in the match but Collins was very timely to grab an 84th-minute chance, overcoming an otherwise guilty Norwich goalkeeper John Ruddy. The win was already quite secure, but it was even more sheltered by Diame’s stoppage time rally.

 

The Hammers are currently level on points with 10th placers Swansea City, but rank behind them due to goal difference. Thus far, they have already won in seven matches, but need to haul more successes to outlast their 12 defeats.

 

Southampton

Southampton nearly booked a ninth unbeaten fixture have they not conceded a goal to Sunderland, their most recent opponents. The case gets worse as the side left the stadium without any goal scored and were beaten via clean sheet. The FA Cup battle saw Craig Gardner’s impressive goal lead his team into the quarterfinals and spared manager Gus Poyet further fixture problems.

 

At the top-flight league, however, the side remain undefeated for six consecutive weeks, earning wins from West Bromwich, Fulham, and Hull City as well as draws with Sunderland, Arsenal, and Stoke City. They have risen to the table’s eight spot, which is a monumental improvement considering they were a few times snubbed by safety.

 

Online betting tip: Although they had mostly drawn with West Ham United in the past, Southampton can actually earn all the points from this battle. The visitors’ improving form and their increasingly maturing pitch skills could boost their appetite to thump their hosts.

 

West Ham | Image source: globaltimes.cn