Brentford vs West Ham – Analysis, Prediction, Team News
Sunday 14th May 2023
Gtech Community Arena
As part of our weekend Premier League predictions, we take a look at West Ham’s visit to Brentford. The visitors are still not mathematically safe – can they ensure that here? Free betting tips and more with our Brentford vs West Ham prediction.
Brentford vs West Ham Preview
Brentford still have an outside chance of achieving European qualification for the first time in their 133-year history, but they will need three victories in addition to Aston Villa and/or Spurs slipping up in their final two matches. Their chances took a blow last time out away at Anfield, suffering a 1-0 defeat in a match where they were largely outplayed and could have few complaints about the final result. They failed to generate much of an attacking threat, and as a result, they were well beaten.
The hosts would need to defeat Manchester City on the final day of the season to have any chance of European qualification. They will surely hope that The Citizens have the league wrapped up by then, otherwise, they will face a formidable task despite winning the reverse fixture 2-1. Otherwise, we’d suggest they have a reasonable chance of upsetting the odds as they face an inconsistent Spurs team away from home in their penultimate fixture.
West Ham might not be mathematically safe just yet, but it would take an absolute miracle for them to be relegated. Nevertheless, they’ll be looking for a strong ending to the season as they look to compete for the Europa Conference League trophy. They virtually assured their safety with an impressive 1-0 victory over Manchester United – a game in which they were arguably the better team despite the possession stats.
Moyes’ men were able to limit Manchester United to half chances and were able to simultaneously press them high up the pitch. It’s performances like that which make many wonder why they’re in the position they’re in, but the league table doesn’t deal in hypotheticals. Following this match, West Ham face two relegation candidates in Leeds United and Leicester – both of whom will clearly be highly motivated opponents.
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play:
Will Not Play: Jansson, Lewis-Potter, Norgaard, Strakosha
Might Not Play: Antonio, Coufal, Ogbonna
Will Not Play: Scamacca
Brentford vs West Ham Lineups (Predicted)
Brentford (3-5-2): Raya; Mee, Pinnock, Zanka; Henry, Damsgaard, Janelt, Jensen; Hickey; Toney, Mbeumo
West Ham (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Johnson, Aguerd, Zouma, Emerson; Rice, Soucek; Benrahma, Paqueta, Fornals; Ings
Brentford vs West Ham Analysis
Brentford Often Struggle Against Less Expansive Teams
While Brentford have enjoyed a hugely impressive second season in the top flight, it’s noticeable that they prefer to play against teams who leave space in behind as they look to compress the play, and also they prefer to face teams who play out from the back which gives them the opportunity to put their high press to good use. West Ham aren’t necessarily a long-ball team, but they have no compunction about bypassing the press directly if they feel the need to.
This has often meant that in this type of match, Brentford tend to revert to more direct football, using the aerial power of Ivan Toney, in particular, to play others in and win the second ball. The statistics confirm this – Brentford have won the most aerial duels of any team in the Premier League. Interestingly, West Ham are second in that particular metric, so we predict that the game will have something of an old-fashioned feel to it – not necessarily percentage football, but neither team will hesitate to clear their lines.
West Ham Have the Better Creative Players
Although we’re uncertain how The Hammers will line up given that they’re practically safe and have (hopefully from their point of view) a couple more fixtures to contend with, comparatively speaking they do have quite a bit of flair in the final third. The likes of Benrahma, Fornals and Paqueta are all capable of getting at defenders and playing a defence-splitting pass on occasion (we believe Bowen will probably be rested for this occasion).
Therefore, if West Ham are able to either play through the Brentford press or, more likely, play over it, they could find themselves in favourable numerical situations and they have the calibre of player in that part of the pitch to do some damage. Declan Rice may or not play here, but he’s crucial for West Ham in linking the play together and providing his team with an additional option in the final third when the opportunity presents itself.
The odds and popular opinion would have this down as a Brentford win. They have more to play for, they’ll select their strongest XI, and we’re unsure that West Ham will reciprocate. Nevertheless, we anticipate a close game as, stylistically at least, West Ham can pose this Brentford side some problems.
If we examine the last two matches between the two teams one week apart in late December/early January, West Ham set out their stall to outplay Brentford and promptly lost 2-0. One week later in the FA Cup, the flow of the match was entirely different. West Ham had 63% of the ball in losing at home to Brentford – away from home, they denied Brentford the space they crave in attack and that figure dropped to 41% as a consequence. West Ham emerged 1-0 winners at Brentford that day. We anticipate another close game, but we think Brentford can get over the line due to increased motivation and some squad rotation on the part of The Hammers.
Brentford 2-1 West Ham
Brentford vs West Ham Betting Tip – Brentford Odds:
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