Tuesday’s Capital One League Cup Semi-Final second leg sees West Ham United host Manchester City. Read below for my prediction and preview for the match.
Manchester City travel to the Boleyn Ground and hope that their early season away difficulties do not come back to haunt them. However, being up 6-0 on aggregate means that they can left off, and even lose, but still advance quite easily.
Remember that away goals mean nothing in the Capital One Cup and a winner will be decided on the night. If the aggregate score remains tied then they will go to penalty kicks.
West Ham United
Being able to play the second leg of this replay at home is normally beneficial, but when you go into the leg already down 0-6 on aggregate, it’s hard to see there being any benefit, or hope even.
West Ham’s recent home form has not been that great this season. They have just one win at home in their last eight matches (all in the Premier League). In this same time they have given up 15 goals as well as three clean sheets. When they haven’t kept a clean sheet they have allowed three goals. They have also twice scored three goals themselves while also losing three matches 1-3, with one of those coming against Manchester City.
While the Hammers have finally gotten Andy Carroll back, this might not be a match worth risking him considering they are also mired in a relegation battle and will need him to stay fit. More likely he will be brought on as a late substitute just to get him some match fitness, since they will not have another match after this for a week.
Their 2-0 win away at Cardiff City was a positive sign for them, but this was then followed up by the 1-3 home loss to Newcastle United in which they lacked the offensive quality to get a result.
It was a match in which they completed just 68% of their 414 passes. They also had 11 shots with only two of those on target. This is certainly a step up from the three shots they took with one on target in the first leg of this tie.
As mentioned above, Manchester City travel to London with a 6-0 aggregate lead and are all but certain to go through to the final. In their weekend EPL match they continued their run of form with a 4-2 win over Cardiff City. This extended their unbeaten streak in all competitions to 17 and was their fourth win in a row.
This seems more likely to be a match in which Pellegrini is able to rest players while giving starts to some fringe players, possibly even for Jack Rodwell or Stevan Jovetic (provided they are fit), both of which have one start and two substitute appearances. It should be a chance for Micah Richards to get a match as well as the youngster Dedryck Boyata.
I’m not sure that this pick is even a fair one. It doesn’t take much to predict that Manchester City should come through as winners. West Ham could benefit from City resting players and could get a result if City gets complacent.
The issue for Manchester City is the fact that they do have a defensive mistake in them and the directness of West Ham’s play could unsettle them, if the West Ham players are up for it. The 6-0 aggregate score could make it difficult for either team to play hard.
Betting Odds: West Ham win: 6.50; Draw: 4.75; Man City win: 1.44
Prediction: West Ham United 1 – 3 Manchester City
TV Schedule: Coverage at 2:40 pm on beIN SPORT.