Both teams came through their midweek cup ties with a second-string West Ham side winning 1-0 at Old Trafford, while Leeds advanced on penalties away at Fulham.
That does however mean that Marcelo Bielsa’s side have only taken victory once inside 90 minutes this season so far, in the previous round against League One strugglers Crewe, leaving them W1-D4-L2 across all competitions.
Those two defeats were however inflicted by Man Utd and Liverpool, though West Ham did the double over them last season as results against the top sides weren’t great generally.
Those recent losses to Man Utd and Liverpool leave Leeds with a W2-D4-L8 record against last season’s top-six finishers, and though they did manage to find the net in 10 of these games, their gung-ho approach left too many gaps for quality opponents to exploit.
Both Teams To Score
Both teams to score here appears quite likely given it’s happened in four of five league games for each of West Ham and Leeds this term.
Since the start of last season, both sides have registered in 13 of West Ham’s 18 matches against teams that finished between 7th and 16th, though the Hammers have strengthened at the back with the capture of Kurt Zouma recently.
Craig Dawson and Issa Diop played were picked in central defence against Man Utd, but David Moyes will likely turn to preferred duo Zouma and Angelo Ogbonna here.
In fact, the spine of team will be completely different with the midfield axis Declan Rice and Tomas Soucek certain to return to the line-up, as well as attacking midfielder Pablo Fornals, goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski and key striker Michail Antonio.
Michail Antonio To Score Anytime
The 31-year-old may not have managed to scored on his international debut for Jamaica recently, but Antonio has netted five goals in as many appearances this season for West Ham, registering at least once in four of these as only Southampton kept him at bay.
He’ll fancy his chances of adding to his tally given Bielsa has a growing injury list to contend with, especially in defence.
West Ham To Win
Full-back Luke Ayling and centre-backs Robin Koch and Diego Llorente are all out injured, while Pascal Struijk, another centre-back, is suspended after his challenge on Liverpool’s Harvey Elliott.
That means Kalvin Phillips may have to drop into defence alongside Liam Cooper, though they’ll miss his influence in midfield unless Bielsa turns to 19-year-old Charlie Cresswell instead.
Elsewhere, Leeds are weakened at the other end of the pitch, with Jack Harrison sidelined by covid, while Raphinha and Patrick Bamford are both slight injury doubts too.
BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE
MICHAIL ANTONIO TO SCORE ANYTIME
WEST HAM TO WIN