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Friday's Premier League preview: West Ham hoping to avoid Brentford's sting

Relegation-threatened West Ham will be hoping for a boost when they host Brentford on Friday in the Premier League, while Leicester face a tricky trip to top-four chasing Liverpool.

It has been a disappointing campaign for the Hammers, who are only two places and a point above the relegation zone, while the Bees are sitting in 10th position and have a six-point buffer over their opponents.

As for the Reds, talk of a title challenge appears to be over, but they remain in the battle for a Champions League finish and they will fancy their chances of overcoming a Leicester side that were thumped 3-0 at home to Newcastle on Boxing Day.

Moyes under pressure

What: West Ham v Brentford
Where: London Stadium, Stratford, East London
When: 19:45, Friday 30th December
Odds: West Ham 1/1, Draw 13/5, Brentford 13/5

After leading West Ham to a seventh-place finish last season and the semi-finals of the Europa League, expectation levels were high for manager David Moyes to take the club onto the next level in the 2022/23 campaign.

However, the Hammers have struggled to get going and ten defeats from their opening 16 matches has left the club embroiled in a relegation fight, something nobody expected after the impressive nature of their 2021/22 season.

Scoring goals has been the major issue for West Ham and they have only scored 13 league goals, leaving them with the fourth-worst attacking record in the division, behind only Wolves (10), Nottingham Forest (11) and Everton (12) have scored less.

The 3-1 Boxing Day loss at Arsenal made it four straight top-flight defeats for the Irons and another loss on Friday would heap the pressure on Moyes, who is eager to try and add to his squad in January.

A return to the London Stadium may not be what the doctor ordered for West Ham, as they have lost their last three home games across all competitions in what has been a festive period with very little cheer.

Brentford celebrated Thomas Frank's contract extension with a 2-2 draw against Tottenham, although that really should have been a win for the Bees after they gave up a 2-0 lead at the Gtech Community Stadium.

Nevertheless, that share of the spoils did extend their unbeaten run in the league to four matches and they find themselves just five points adrift of Liverpool in sixth.

The Bees won their last away outing, beating Manchester City 2-1 in thrilling circumstances, and there looks to be real value in backing Frank's troops at 13/5 Full Time Result to come away from the London Stadium with the spoils.

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What: Liverpool v Leicester City
Where: Anfield, Liverpool
When: 20:00, Friday 30th December
How to watch: Sky Sports Main Event & Sky Sports Premier League
Odds: Liverpool 2/7, Draw 5/1, Leicester City 17/2

Brendan Rodgers returns to one of his former stomping grounds on Friday when he takes his Leicester side to Anfield to face Liverpool, who confirmed the signing of Cody Gakpo from Dutch club PSV Eindhoven on Wednesday evening.

The Foxes had suffered just one defeat from their last eight matches across all competitions before the Boxing Day visit of Newcastle, only for the Magpies to slot three past them without reply in what was a disappointing performance.

On reflection, that loss came against a Newcastle side enjoying a superb campaign and a slow start, in which the hosts were 3-0 inside 32 minutes, contributed to that defeat.

Rodgers will be eager to see a response from his players, but it's unlikely that will happen against a resurgent Liverpool, especially given the fact James Maddison has been ruled out of the contest.

The Englishman is the playmaker for the Foxes and they looked lost for ideas and creativity for large periods of that defeat to the Magpies without him in the team.

Liverpool responded to their League Cup defeat to Manchester City by beating Aston Villa 3-1, making it three straight league victories on the bounce for the Reds.

Jurgen Klopp's side are five points off the top four as things stand, although they do have a game in hand on fourth-place Spurs and they will be hoping to keep the pressure on those above them.

Liverpool should have enough to claim the spoils in this one but there is a chance Leicester could get on the scoresheet, given the fact the hosts have conceded in all of their last four league assignments.

The Foxes have also netted 11 times in their last four away outings across all competitions - all of which have ended in victories - so a win for the Reds and both teams to score at 8/5 Result/Both Teams to Score appeals.

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