Astra vs West Ham by AlQahira

Astra
VS
West-Ham
Astra Giurgiu is minutes away from another adding another impressive "scalp" of western football after that of Lyon last year; this year it seems that the victim will be West Ham United. Let's put things straight; qualitywise, moneywise, at history and exposure and many other aspects West Ham wins against its romanian counterpart hands down. There is a massive gap between these two in all those aspects. But there are some stong arguments why Astra is the favorite to win today's game for me. First of all, for West Ham, (as for all the other Premiership teams) Europa League seems to be a hindrance; of course it would be nice to have a long endeavour in Europe but with one of the most congested national programs in Europe, a long stint in Europa League is not necessarily a blessing especially for a lower half team in EPL as it's the case with WHU. Also they won much more money by remaining in EPL from television rights than from winning the Europa League! Those are some strong reasons why Slaven Bilic chosed to send to Giurgiu a team with an average age of only 21,2 years with only a handful of first team players (Jenkinson, Poyet, Maiga or Nolan). West Ham will be without Zarate, Amalfitano, Ogbonna, Payet, Sakho, Adrian, Kouyate, Cresswell all rested for the all important weekend clash with Arsenal, Valencia and O'Brian are injured while Tomkins and Collins are suspended.

 

For an unheralded team like Astra a moment like this cannot go to waste; for them a victory today will be of the utmost importance even if it's obtained against a second or even a third string WHU.

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Pick Bookmaker Odds Stake Result
Astra William Hill 2.62 8 2-1 WON (+12.96 units)
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