A number of Premier League clubs were given an easy ride when the draw for the third round of the FA Cup was announced. Ties against lower league opposition await many but that’s not the case over at the London Stadium.
West Ham versus Leeds may just be the tie of the round with both teams in good shape after the first games of the New Year. It’s a Sunday 2pm kick-off (live on ITV) so let’s see what the bookies make of this before this preview decides on our betting tips.
The Hammers are clearly having the better season and are looking to close out a Europa League place in the second half of the campaign. For Leeds, a 3-1 win over Burnley was a positive way to start the year but Marcelo Bielsa’s men remain in danger of being sucked into a relegation scrap.
Based on overall form across 2021/22, it’s no surprise to see West Ham listed as favourites for the win at odds of 4/5 in most places with the best of the UK online bookies. The draw is next up at 13/5 while a win for Leeds can be claimed at a top price of 4/1. Those interested in the whole tournament outright winner market should take a look at our FA Cup betting odds tables here.
Much will depend on team selection and both teams may consider that their Premier League aspirations will take priority. It could be far more open than those numbers suggest so let’s consider the side markets before making a decision on the result.
In matches such as these, punters should always be wary of team news. Early FA Cup games can often see changes in regular personnel and that’s a particularly important point when it comes to individual goalscorer betting.
The bookmakers will simply list the usual suspects and the favourite to open the scoring on Sunday is West Ham’s Michail Antonio at best odds of 9/2. Andriy Yarmolenko follows at 6/1 while Jarrod Bowen is marginally further back at 13/2.
The first name from within the Leeds United camp is that of Patrick Bamford at best odds of 7/1. As for longer odds from behind the front men, West Ham’s defensive midfielder Tomas Soucek is generally one to watch. The Czech Republic International contributes important goals but, having found the target recently, he may be a little short this week at 10/1.
Moving on to team bets and Both Teams to Score is quoted for this game at 10/13 while the ‘No’ bet on BTTS is out at 11/10.
Over in the Total Goals section, a stake Above the 2.5 line will currently attract best odds of 10/11. It’s a bet that rarely gets to even money so that’s not a bad price but we could push to Over 3.5 in return for odds of 11/5.
That just leaves us with our regular look at a Correct Score suggestion. Our feeling is that this will be a low scoring affair and that could lead to interest in a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes at best odds of 15/2. Alternatively, a 2-0 win for West Ham can be claimed at a top price of 10/1 while the same scoreline in favour of Leeds is all the way out to a best of 30/1.
Our Preview’s WHUFC vs LUFC Betting Tips Verdict
There could certainly be scope for an upset here: WHU have enjoyed a more positive season overall but recent results have included a defeat to Southampton and a draw against relegation-threatened Burnley.
LUFC endured two heavy losses before Christmas – a 7-0 reverse at the hands of Manchester City, followed by a 4-1 home defeat to Arsenal. Bielsa’s men do, however, have that little bit of momentum after beating Burnley so comfortably last time out.
Much will depend on team selection and that is not something that we can second guess at this stage. With that in mind, it’s sensible to look at the side markets for our betting tips.
The statistics show that Leeds have scored nine goals in their last six matches while the Hammers have found the net on 10 occasions over the same period of time. Those are healthy numbers but trends are there to be broken and we feel that this cup tie will be a more cagey affair.
The sports betting sites tend to agree because a stake under 2.5 goals will bring odds of 11/10. We’d hoped for something a little longer but that’s not too short for comfort so we’ll start here.
This preview will sign off with a goalscorer tip and, when Andriy Yarmolenko joined West Ham from Borussia Dortmund in 2018, it appeared to be a shrewd piece of business. The Ukrainian international scores important goals but injuries have held him back.
Yarmolenko appears to be as fit as can be hoped and a bit of trickery could make the difference in a tight game. West Ham should edge this one and we’ll sign off with Yarmolenko to score in 90 minutes at 9/4. So these are the two betting tips at best odds: