English Premier League
Kick Off: Saturday, 9 March at 8.30 PM IST
Stadium: Cardiff City Stadium
Free English Premier League Picks Cardiff City vs. West Ham United
West Ham travel to Cardiff City in the Premier League on Saturday in what seems to be an important fixture for Neil Warnock. Their loss against Wolves (2-0) means Cardiff have lost three in a row, the Bluebirds find themselves in the drop zone which has mounted pressure on the veteran manager. Cardiff desperately need a win here, if they’re to play in the Premier League next season this is an opportunity for them to break their losing streak against an unpredictable West Ham side. The Hammers, on the other hand, are coming off from a victory 2-0 against Newcastle United which has cemented their spot in the top 10. Now that West Ham are in the top half of the table they will look to chase Watford and Wolves who are placed on 8th and 7th respectively in the table.
Cardiff City had lost the reverse fixture against West Ham by 1-3 in December. Huge defeats at home against Watford (5-1) and Everton (3-0) has decreased their chances of staying in the Premier League for another season. Cardiff’s defence has let them down in their last three games, which they have lost by an aggregate score of 1-10. The Bluebirds have lost all three of their Premier League meetings with West Ham by a two-goal margin. Cardiff City would believe they can beat West Ham knowing their away record which hasn’t been good – the Hammers have lost four of their last five in the Premier League (D1), failing to score in each defeat. The key to success for Warnock’s men this season have come in the second half by late winners, but their stumble at the back has caused them to concede early on in the game which they never recovered from in those situations of the games. The team news from the dressing room is that – Sol Bamba will miss the rest of the season through ruptured anterior cruciate ligament. While Bruno Ecuele Manga is expected to start in his place, with Harry Arter and Josh Murphy both hoping to win recalls.
West Ham are looking for back to back wins in the Premier League, after a disappointing start to the season for Manuel Pellegrini his side are now in the first half of the table – where they belong. Pellegrini’s first ever Premier League defeat was away at Cardiff City in August 2013 with Manchester City, since then he’s won two against the Bluebirds. Declan Rice and Mark Noble’s first half goals saw them past Newcastle United at the London Stadium. The concern here for West Ham is that they’ve been poor traveling away and they would want to be on the winning side by overcoming a side who’s in the relegation zone. The Hammers have had a bad record against sides starting the day in the relegation zone – winning only one of their last eight Premier League away games (D4 L3). Declan Rice, Noble, Arnautovic and, Felipe Anderson are all capable of finding the net and would want to break the jinx of not scoring in their previous away games.
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West Ham have won their last seven meetings with Cardiff in all competitions, scoring at least twice each time and conceding just three goals. They last had a longer winning run against an opponent between 1989-2000 vs Watford (9 games)
Cardiff have scored just seven first-half goals in Premier League games this season, a league-low. They’ve scored a league-high ratio 72% of their goals after half-time in the competition this season (18/25)
West Ham’s Marko Arnautovic has been involved in 10 goals in his last 11 Premier League appearances against newly-promoted sides (5 goals, 5 assists)
Cardiff City 0 – 2 West Ham