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Antony Heath 13th Sep 2012 - 18:53

Canaries to fly past the blunt Hammers

Norwich v West Ham - Saturday 12:45 live on Sky Sports 2


The Premier League resumes at Carrow Road following the international break as West Ham make the journey north to face Norwich. The Hammers have made a bright start to life back in the Premier League and will look to pick up a third win in four games against a Canaries side with just two points from their three games.

Norwich (6/5) have showed signs of improvement in their last 2 games as they secured 1-1 draws against QPR at home and at White Hart Lane thanks to a late Snodgrass equaliser. They have shown a lot more fight in those than they did sinking to a 5-0 defeat on the opening day to Fulham. They were solid if not spectacular at home last season as they picked up as they won seven and drew six times so they should have the nous to come off the break and take the three points

Chris Hughton is slowly putting his mark on the team and he will be able to hand a debut to Steven Whittaker (25/1 First/Last, 8/1) as they attempt to shore up at the back and the Scotland international's presence will certainly help. He will also be able to call upon Elliot Bennett and Elliot Ward as the pair have returned to training following injuries. Grant Holt and Simeon Jackson (11/2 First/Last, 6/4) can be a lethal partnership and I would fancy one of these pair to open the scoring at 9/4 and both to score at anytime looks to be value at 11/2.

West Ham (21/10, draw 5/2) pulled Fulham apart before the international break as they won 3-0 at Upton Park but that was tempered by the news that Andy Carroll tore his hamstring and is on the sidelines for approximately six weeks. His loss will be massive for the Hammers as his presence will be missed especially with other injury doubts including Jack Collison, James Collins and Guy Demel meaning the depth in Big Sam's squad could be tested at this early stage of the season.

In Carroll's absence it's harder to see West Ham finding the back of the net as their scoring options look limited and the line will likely be led by increasingly lethal Carlton Cole (7/1 First/Last, 2/1), the big man has received plenty of stick for failing to score frequently but he scored 17 league goals in the Championship last season but has failed to net a Premier League goal thus far and it's easy to see his drought continue despite having the creative Yossi Benayoun (14/1 First/Last, 11/2) and Matt Jarvis (12/1 First/Last, 5/1) behind him.

While West Ham have looked solid at home they were pulled apart away at Swansea and I wouldn't have any confidence backing them on their travels and so fully expect the Canaries to be singing come full time. I think they have shown more in their last two fixtures and enough to think they can beat the Hammers. West Ham looked a little toothless at the Liberty Stadium and I think value lies with Norwich to win to nil at 3/1.

I think Norwich will be able to bag a comfortable victory and a second 3-0 away defeat (22/1) of the season isn't a bad shout for the big price but 2-0 (11/1) looks the more likely outcome. I fancy Norwich to come out of the blocks flying and the double result of Norwich/Norwich is a safe bet at 11/4. Grant Holt is the subject of our offer with him to score in a Norwich win priced at 3/1, while the reverse with Kevin Nolan scoring is at an enhanced 7/1!


Best Bets:

Norwich @ 6/5

Grant Holt or Simeon Jackson first goal @ 9/4

Worth a Punt:

Norwich 3-0 @ 22/1

Norwich/Norwich @ 11/4



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