Friday, March 1, 2024

Prediction: TSC vs West Ham

Verdict: West Ham win & Under 4.5 goals

Best Odds: 8/11

Bookmaker: Olympusbet

Knowing that they can officially punch their Europa League knockout stage ticket on Thursday evening, West Ham will travel to TSC.

TSC

Starting with the hosts, while TSC might have marked their return from November’s international break with a stunning 4-0 romp away at Partizan, Marko Lazetic’s side have endured a major European struggle this season. Despite always knowing that they faced a real Group A uphill battle this year, the Serbian outfit sit rock-bottom of the table and their chances of booking a famous knockout stage ticket have long since gone up in smoke. Mustering just a single point from any of their first four Europa League appearances, the Blues should be bracing themselves for another stern examination here. Last seen in European action putting in a woeful performance as they slumped to a routine 5-0 drumming at the hands of German outfit Freiburg, TSC have also gained a reputation for their extended defensive issues. Shipping 13 strikes in their four Group A showdowns this season, Lazetic’s men are rightfully tipped as a landslide contender in midweek.

Team News

Recently cementing his spot as Lazetic’s number-one choice, Serbia youth international Veljko Ilic should keep his spot between the sticks on Thursday evening. Bagging three goals in his previous four appearances across all competitions, 22-year-old Akesandar Cirkovic will be hoping to spearhead TSC’s charge in midweek.

Not featuring in any of TSC’s last four appearances on either side of November’s international break, Lazetic is once again sweating on the fitness of ex-Red Star starlet Petar Stanic.

West Ham

As for the visitors, while West Ham might have found themselves in the midst of an October wobble, the Hammers have come roaring back in an eye-catching fashion. Mounting a stunning last-gasp comeback away at relegation scrappers Burnley over the weekend as they eventually snatched a 2-1 victory at Turf Moor, David Moyes’ men will be confident of officially punching their Europa League knockout stage ticket on Thursday evening. Heading into November’s international break with an action-packed 3-2 win at home against Nottingham Forest, the reigning Europa Conference League champions have won each of their previous three appearances across all formats by an aggregate score of 6-3, it should also be noted that West Ham have collected 12 points from their last five showdowns. Likewise, claiming a 3-1 victory when they welcomed TSC to the London Stadium back on September 21st, the former Manchester United boss will be calling on a similar performance on foreign soil.

Team News

Both sustaining respective knee injuries during November’s international break, West Ham are expected to be without both Jarrod Bowen and Michail Antonio on Thursday evening.

With Moyes expected to make a host of changes here, the likes of Lukas Fabianski, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Said Benrahma could be handed a full recall here. Likewise, impressing off the bench against Burnley over the weekend, 19-year-old academy graduate Divin Mubama will be hoping to spearhead Moyes’ charge in Serbia.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When TSC and West Ham met for their reverse Group A showdown on September 21st, the Hammers picked up a 3-1 victory in east London.
    • Moyes’ men have won each of their previous three appearances across all competitions by an aggregate score of 6-3.
    • Likewise, West Ham have also collected 12 points from their last five showdowns across all formats.
    • TSC have failed to win any of their last five straight appearances in front of their own supporters.
    • Czech Republic international Tomas Soucek has found the net in each of his last four appearances for club and country.

    Conclusion

    Knowing that they can officially punch their Europa League knockout stage ticket on Thursday evening, West Ham should be smelling a golden opportunity here. Winning each of their previous three appearances on either side of November’s international break, Moyes’ men will be excited by a trip to Serbia in midweek. With TSC only collecting a single point from their four Group A showdowns this year, Thursday’s hosts are also without a win from their previous five straight appearances in front of their own supporters. With West Ham landing a 3-1 victory when the two sides met for their reverse Europa League meeting on September 21st, we are expecting a similar outcome here.

    Verdict: West Ham win & Under 4.5 goals

    Best Odds: 8/11

    Bookmaker: Olympusbet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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