Wolves will look to make it three competitive games without tasting defeat when they take on West Ham at home on Saturday (10am ET; 3pm GMT). Can the hosts get the desired result? Or will the visitors pick up another win following their triumphant afternoon in the FA Cup? All will be revealed by this WWFC vs WHU preview with predictions and betting picks.
It was mixed emotions for the Wolves players on Saturday. They came from behind to earn an FA Cup replay against Liverpool, but they had a late winner controversially ruled out. So while they will have been pleased to avoid defeat at Anfield, they probably returned home thinking that they should have gone through.
In the Premier League, Saturday’s hosts are without a win in two after losing to Manchester United, before drawing with Aston Villa last time out. Worse still, Julen Lopetegui’s men have lost each of their last four league games in front of a home crowd. Time to improve.
For the Hammers it was a happy weekend, as they got the better of Brentford in the FA Cup, keeping a clean sheet in the process. That win signaled two games without a defeat for David Moyes’ strugglers, who currently sit in a disappointing 17th position. They are above the dreaded drop zone on goal difference only.
It is now no league wins in six for Saturday’s visitors, who did stop the rot last time out by collecting a point from their visit to Leeds, but they had lost five straight prior to that. If they are not to be well and truly entangled in a relegation scrap, they need to improve quickly.
Wolves find themselves down in 19th position in the Premier League. They are struggling, make no mistake about it. Why are they in such a desperate position? Naturally, a lack of wins is the obvious reason, but they have struggled to win games for one clear reason, and that’s a lack of firepower in the final third.
As things stand, Saturday’s hosts are the lowest scorers in the league having notched just 11 goals in 18 games. That is an average of just 0.61 goals per game, which really is dreadful.
Even at home, they have struggled to get going offensively, scoring only five times in nine games at Molineux. No Premier League team has scored fewer home goals this season. They lack a goal-getter, that is for sure. None of their forwards have really got going, as the fact that midfield patroller Ruben Neves ranks as the joint top scorer shows. Winger Daniel Podence has four goals, but forwards Diego Costa, Hwang Hee-Chan, and Goncalo Guedes have just one goals between them.
Does the problem go deeper than that, though? It is not just finishing. Creativity has been a problem too. Wolves ranks as the third worst team in the Premier League when it comes to expected goals for, producing an average of just 0.95 xG per 90 minutes. Maybe they ought to have scored a few more, but they have hardly created an abundance for their forwards, and that’s a big problem.
Away-day woes for Hammers
Playing on the road hasn’t suited David Moyes’ men this term. They’ve won one out of nine traveling games, losing six of the other seven.
You can’t even argue that they have had the toughest run of away games, as five of their nine opponents currently rank inside the bottom half. In those five away games against bottom-half teams, they have scored just four goals, so they too have a problem in the final third.
Only Nottingham Forest have scored fewer away goals than West Ham in the Premier League this season. Saturday’s visitors have failed to find the net in four out of nine away games, while they have scored more than once in just one out of nine. Said Benrahma and Gianluca Scamacca are joint top scorers with just three goals each, so it is fair to say that they’ve lacked a prolific scorer.
Hammers on top in this one
West Ham have done well against Wolves in recent times. They won by two goals to nil when the pair met back in October, while they were victorious prior to that too. In fact, Saturday’s visitors have won four of the last five renewals of this fixture, winning at this venue by three goals to two back in April 2021.
Wolves have won one of the last five, but they did win their last home match against the Hammers, winning by a goal to nil just over a year ago. Interestingly, both teams have scored in just one of the last 11 renewals of this fixture.
Goals hard to come by
The teams rank somewhat evenly in the early betting with the major United States’ sportsbooks and betting firms, and since they are both struggling, with just a point separating them, it is easy to see why.
At the current odds, the bet that appeals most is ‘Both Teams to Score – NO’. We know that both teams have found it incredibly hard to find the net this season. Between them they have scored a paltry average of just 0.72 goals per 90 minutes. Their combined xG average is better at 1.09 but it hardly screams goals.
Only Bournemouth have failed to score more times than West Ham and Wolves this season, who between them have not found the net in 17 of their combined 36 matches, with Saturday’s hosts failing to score 50% of the time. The visitors have failed to score 44% of the time this term.
Moreover, both teams have scored in just 22% of Wolverhampton Wanderers home fixtures, while both teams have scored in only 44% of West Ham’s away games.
All in all, betting on at least one of this goal-lacking pair to misfire stands out as a viable option. So our WWFC vs WHUFC predictions and betting picks for this preview are:
- Both Teams to Score NO @ -115 with Bovada.