David Moyes is in the habit of breaking records at Manchester United, albeit the wrong kind. At the weekend alone, United conceded three penalties in one game at home for the first time in their history. A couple of weeks ago he became the first United manager to lose to a Greek side in Europe, and in January Swansea won for the first time at Old Trafford since 1931.
It may be record-breaking but it doesn’t make for a great CV.
Luckily Moyes can get the Red Devils back to winning ways in the league on Saturday as he sets another record against West Ham – by becoming the first United manager to win 3-0 at Upton Park.
Big Sam’s West Ham have conceded 20 goals in 14 games at home this season which, in itself, is pretty unremarkable. However, in 43 per cent of those games they have conceded exactly three goals, and in another 43 per cent they have kept a clean sheet.
- They are one of just two teams in the league, Arsenal being the other, who haven’t conceded exactly two goals in a game at home this season
- In the last 15 years of the Premier League, just two sides conceded exactly three goals in more home matches than West Ham have this season. That dubious honour goes to Blackpool in 2010/11 and Watford in 1999/00 who both managed to ship three goals on a rotten seven occasions
- The six teams that scored three goals at Upton Park are mostly top half teams. Everton, Chelsea, Arsenal, Newcastle and Man City all found the onion bag on three occasions in their games against West Ham with Tottenham, Liverpool and United all due to visit
So it would appear West Ham will either frustrate the opposition at home and keep them at bay, or, if their defence is breached, end up conceding three and throwing in the towel. A nod to Big Sam’s approach to management at the Hammers, or just a quirky stat?
While United have been frankly appalling at Old Trafford this year, losing to West Brom, Everton, Newcastle and getting thumped 3-0 by Liverpool, David Moyes is enjoying considerably more success away from home. That’ll rub off on you when you spend a lot of time with Ryan Giggs. On the road, Arsenal and Spurs are the only sides with a better record than United this year. While Liverpool are the only side to have scored more goals away from home – 34 to United’s 28.
United also top the table we like to call ‘The Flat-Track Bully League’. Rather than consisting of how many playground wedgies teams have racked up this season, it’s actually based on away games against bottom half clubs. And United sit at the top having won seven, drawn one and lost one this season. They’ve scored 21 goals and kept three clean sheets in those matches.
So with West Ham’s tendency to collapse faster than a cheap tent, and United’s good form on the road, punter’s might be tempted by the 14/1 on offer that United win 3-0 or the 13/1 about them winning 3-1.
If you’re the kind of person who likes a bit of jam on their scone however, there is a 70/1 poke that might be worth a cheeky punt.
- West Ham have been ahead at half-time in just four of their 14 home games this season – that’s a measly 29 per cent
- United’s away record isn’t much better though, as they have been in front at the break in just five of their 15 Premier League games on the road
- David Moyes’ side have failed to score before the oranges in 53 per cent of their away games while West Ham have failed to score during the first period in 57 per cent of their games at Upton Park
- The Hammers have kept nine first half clean sheets at home this season – including games against Arsenal and Everton who ended up scoring three goals after the break
- Although Big Sam’s side are tough to break down at the start, West Ham have conceded 11 goals in the last half an hour of games at home. Fulham (18) are the only top flight side to have a worse record
It’s 70/1 that the sides go in for their half-time team-talk at 0-0 but United end up coming out 3-0 winners. It might be a long shot but it’s still more likely than #MoyesIn ever trending in the red half of Manchester.