Dec. 15, 2006 – Over the last few months Curbishley has been at the forefront of any high profile vacant manager’s job, but it seems to me that he’s been holding out for this one. Although some fans will not have liked the sacking of Pardew, being a former Hammers player Curbishley is sure to get a good welcome, but he couldn’t have asked for a tougher start.
West Ham have dropped into the relegation zone after losing their last three games without scoring and conceding a massive eight goals.
Some would argue a bit of sympathy for former boss Pardew, as he’s been forced to play two Argentineans and had star striker Dean Ashton out since the start of the season.
So I think the new boss will just have to bite the bullet until the transfer window opens in January and although the bases of the squad is alright there is still massive room for improvement if they don’t want to avoid relegation.
On the other hand Man Utd’s form couldn’t be further away from their opponents here, as the Red Devils have not lost in their last 12 league games, with their only defeat in the Premiership coming against Arsenal back in September.
With Chelsea slipping up a few times this season Alex Ferguson’s men find themselves five points clear at the top of the Premiership and will be keen to keep the pressure on with the busy Christmas period just around the corner.
So with seven wins and one draw on the road Man Utd are a short-price at around 1/2 with the draw 10/3 and the dream start for Curbishley around 13/2.
To me despite all the fairytale start stories that people might be expecting here there will surely only be one outcome come 6pm on Sunday – a Man Utd win!
They are scoring for fun at the moment, with netting 11 times in their last 4 games, and with Saha on target in their last three games the 9/2 first goal and 5/4 anytime are of massive interest.
The over 2.5 goals at 10/11 is also interesting with United’s scoring form and West Ham’s poor defensive run at present and is also worth considering. While of the other markets the 7/2 on offer for HT-Draw /FT-Man Utd stood out. I expect West Ham to start the game well, trying to impress the new manager and could well take the league leaders into the break all square. However if this is the scenario then Man Utd’s class should see them through and at rewarding odds of 7/2 this will be a nice return.
Recommended Bets – 2pts – Saha to score the first goal
Recommended Bets – 3pts – Over 2.5 goals
Recommended Bets – 2pts – HT-Draw/FT-Man Utd
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