How the Bookies See it
- Winner: Chelsea 4/6, Draw 14/5, West Ham United 9/2 - Paddy Power
- First Goalscorer: Diego Costa 4/1, Loic Remy 4/1, Michy Batshuayi 5/1 - BetVictor
- Correct Score: Chelsea 1-0 7/1, Draw 1-1 7/1, Chelsea 2-0 15/2 - Bet365
- Chelsea have had to adapt to the teachings of Antonio Conte following the Italian’s appointment in the summer. The former Juventus boss has added Leicester’s influential midfielder N’Golo Kante and promising young striker Michy Batshuayi to his side, while maintaining many of the high-profile players who flopped so spectacularly last term. In pre-season, Chelsea picked up four victories from six matches, a fine run of results that somehow eluded the 2014/15 champions in the last campaign.
- West Ham have been busy in the transfer market over the summer, adding depth to their squad ahead of their first season away from the Boleyn Ground. A number of notable additions, including Andre Ayew from Swansea City and Valencia’s Sofiane Feghouli, will spark positivity at the London club as the side pushes for a higher position than last season’s seventh-place finish. Slaven Bilic’s side managed only one pre-season win before the action kicked off in earnest on the 23rd of July with a Europa League tie against NK Domzale of Slovenia.
Chelsea enter this match as favourites despite a catastrophic 2015/16 campaign. The Blues will be hoping to reassert themselves as one of the nation’s best teams and will be determined to storm their way back into the Champions League at the first time of asking. Chelsea boast an impressive win rate against West Ham, with just two defeats since 2004, and will be looking to start their season with a victory. Chelsea’s new boss Antonio Conte is well-known for implementing a tight backline, particularly during his time with Juventus, therefore a win to nil in favour of the home side looks like a good bet as you’d get 19/10 with BetVictor.
Despite this strict defensive policy set out by Conte, West Ham know how to break teams down and could pull off the first real shock of the campaign. Last season, the Hammers profited from the goals and assists of Dimitri Payet who very quickly became a favourite of the fans. The Frenchman is 9/1 with William Hill to find the net in a West Ham win. However, if you believe that history can repeat itself, a decent tip could be Andy Carroll to hit the target. The ponytailed poacher netted in each of the two games between the sides last season and is well priced to score anytime in this game.
- Sports.net’s top tip: Andy Carroll to score anytime - 4/1 with Paddy Power
*Please note that odds may fluctuate in the run up to kick-off.