Sunderland vs West Ham

December 12, 2014
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Gus Poyet’s Sunderland will be searching for their first win after five games when they host high-flying West Ham at their Stadium of Light. Meanwhile, the Hammers climbed to Premier League top 4 with three straight wins and they go into this game high on confidence.

Three clean sheets in four games

Sunderland have come a long way since the embarrassing 8-0 loss at Southampton, and they came through a very difficult fixture list with quite a few promising performances. While defeating Crystal Palace on the road and suffering a somewhat unfortunate defeat to Manchester City, the Black Cats held the likes of Everton, Leicester, Chelsea and Liverpool to remain few points clear of the relegation zone. Sunderland now hope to record the first win after quite a while, although this is clearly not the right time to be facing red-hot West Ham. The hosts cannot be trusted to prevent their opponents from scoring, but they can be trusted to adopt a more positive approach now that they face a team they actually have a decent chance of defeating. Connor Wickham’s decision to sign a new deal at the Stadium of Light should be a major lift for Gus Poyet’s side and no doubt Sunderland will want to return to winning ways before they face arch rivals Newcastle in the Tyne-Wear derby next weekend.

There are no fresh selection problems for Gus Poyet, although the likes of Patrick van Aanholt, Billy Jones and Emmanuele Giaccherini are out injured.

West Ham soar to unimagined heights

It was not long ago that club board as well as the fans were unhappy with manager Sam Allardyce for team’s style of play and under-par results, but Big Sam has managed to silence all the doubters this season. His charges are playing the best football Boleyn Ground has seen in years and their results are even more impressive. For the first time in quite a while, the Hammers are spoilt for choices in attack and have already bagged 26 goals in 15 games, climbing to fourth place in the standings in the process. And with the attack in perfect working order while Andy Carroll was away, many believed the towering striker’s return would not be the best news for West Ham, but the former England international has been absolutely impressive of late, giving his side a new dimension in attack and proving a real nightmare for opposition defenders. With Alex Song, Enner Valencia and Diafra Sakho all back to the side, the Hammers will fancy their chances of extending the winning run at the Stadium of Light and they definitely look like favourites to claim maximum points.

Doubts still remain over the fitness of Mark Noble, while Carl Jenkinson has been added to the infirmary with a hamstring problem.


Even if they only managed one goal in last four matches, Sunderland have been showing a lot of improvement of late and more positive approach against West Ham should see them return amongst the goals. Meanwhile, the Hammers are playing with a great deal of confidence at the moment and I certainly wouldn’t bet against them winning this game.

Top pick: Over 2.5 goals   2.05 (21/20) @ William Hill

Alternative pick 1: Both teams to score   1.75 (3/4) @ 888sport

Alternative pick 2: Away win   2.63 (13/8) @ Betfred

We Highly Recommend These Places
Share your Opinion!