Big Sam’s West Ham farewell the nail in Newcastle’s PL coffin

No matter what the result of West Ham’s visit to Newcastle this weekend, it seems Irons gaffer Sam Allardyce will get the heave-ho, making way for a new, more fan-friendly man ahead of the east Londoners’ move to the Olympic Stadium in just over 12 months’ time.

By a twist of fate, the pugnacious Midlander has been handed the chance to stick it to bosses David Gold and David Sullivan in his final encounter by beating old crowd Newcastle and ex-employer Mike Ashley, possibly sending them down to the Championship in the process.

The away win, which would undoubtedly be a fitting result in the circumstances, is priced up at a whopping 7/2 with Ladbrokes, despite Newcastle’s barely believable record of nine losses in their past 10 fixtures, four of them at home.

John Carver’s crowd might have something to play for, while West Ham don’t, but they’ve been in this mess for a while without barely a peep, and couldn’t see off already-relegated QPR at Loftus Road last time out. The 3/4 on offer about the hosts should be swerved at all costs.

West Ham’s away form may be as bad as it gets, with just one win on the road in the top flight since the start of December, but after a dreadful return of three points from six Premier League fixtures between late January and mid-March, signs of life have been present among the Irons brethren of late.

Allardyce’s side have beaten Burnley and Sunderland, avoided defeat at home to Stoke and on the road at QPR, and put up a fair fight when going down 2-0 away to Manchester City since.

They will at least remember what it takes to win, while Carver’s lot have now endured 900 minutes of football without tasting success.

The kicker? Allardyce is a much better tactician than his opposite number, and he’ll be out to prove it in spades against two sets of owners he surely can’t stand.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Iain Houten

Iain has been contributing pieces to various websites on an array of subjects, including sports, politics and art, for over four years. Despite blue being his favourite colour, the teams he supports all wear red.