Premier League Preview – West Ham United
It may seem a little early to suggest that a match that takes place a little over a quarter of the way through a season is a six pointer but this one may just be it.
The Hammers travel to South London in buoyant mood after knocking out in form Tottenham Hotpsur out of the League Cup in midweek and may just prove a tougher proposition for the hosts because of it.
In contrast, a Palace side riddled with fringe players suffered a shock defeat at Ashton Gate in midweek with those selected doing themselves no favours at all if they aim to be involved in the first team any time soon. Whether that defeat will have any effect on the morale of the team remains to be seen.
As the main Palace Twitter account continues its role of whipping up the fans into a frenzy ahead of the game, something that the regulars at SE25 hardly need to be told, the players will be all too well aware of the implications a loss could have. On the plus side, they will also know that a win will hopefully be a springboard into a favourable run of matches for the most part that follow.
Roy Hodgson will be keen to witness a performance of similar ilk to that at home to Chelsea and he will know that he has his work cut out to instigate something similar this weekend.
The fans will be there in fine voice as ever. Over to the players.
CRYSTAL PALACE – Lee Chung-yong (muscle) and James McArthur (knock) are doubts while Christian Benteke (knee) and Connor Wickham (knee) continue to miss out.
WEST HAM UNITED – Michail Antonio (rib), James Collins (ankle) and Diafra Sakho (back) are all doubtful for the trip.
The last time these two sides met was at the London Stadium in January in what turned out to be a one sided affair. The hosts took the lead with a little over twenty minutes left to play courtesy of Sofiane Feghouli before Andy Carroll doubled the lead not long after. Man of the match Michail Antonio scored the third to seal the win for the Hammers.
Who Scored man of the match – Michail Antonio
Last FIVE meetings between the two sides;
- 14/10/2017 West Ham United 3-0 Crystal Palace
- 15/10/2016 Crystal Palace 0-1 West Ham United
- 02/04/2016 West Ham United 2-2 Crystal Palace
- 17/10/2015 Crystal Palace 1-3 West Ham United
- 28/02/2015 West ham United 1-3 Crystal Palace
Last FIVE results for Palace;
- 24/10/2017 Bristol City 4-1 Crystal Palace
- 21/10/2017 Newcastle United 1-0 Crystal Palace
- 14/10/2017 Crystal Palace 2-1 Chelsea
- 30/09/2017 Manchester United 4-0 Crystal Palace
- 23/09/2017 Manchester City 5-0 Crystal Palace
Last FIVE results for West Ham;
- 25/10/2017 Tottenham Hotspur 2-3 West Ham United
- 20/10/2017 West Ham United 0-3 Brighton & Hove Albion
- 14/10/2017 Burnley 1-1 West Ham United
- 30/09/2017 West Ham United United 1-0 Swansea City
- 23/09/2017 West Ham United 2-3 Tottenham Hotspur
FORM PLAYERS (courtesy of Who Scored)
Top two rated players from each team so far this season;
- Jose Fonte 7.01
- Ruben Loftus-Cheek 6.98
- Pablo Zabaleta 6.95
- Andros Townsend 6.86
ONE TO WATCH
Former clubs – Penafiel, Sporting, Sacavenense, Felgueiras, Vitoria Setubal, Benfica, Pacos Ferreira (loan), Estrela Amadora (loan), Crystal Palace, Southampton
The former Palace favourite began his career in the youth set up of his local club, Penafiel, where he was born. He moved on to Sporting in 1994 and made his full debut in 2002 and went on to make over fifty appearances for the club. After spells at a couple other Portuguese clubs, the central defender moved to Benfica but never made a first team appearance.
After a couple of loan spells he found his way to Selhurst Park in 2007 where he made over eighty appearances before dropping down a division to sign for Southampton in 2010. Capped by Portugal on 27 occasions to date, Fonte signed for West Ham earlier this year.
Final league position – 16th
After what has been a tough start to the campaign for the Hammers, it remains to be seen if Slaven Bilic can make it through to the busy Christmas fixtures let alone the end of the season. An inspiring win over Spurs at Wembley Stadium in the Carabao Cup in midweek will do their confidence a world of good but they will have to translate that into the league where they have struggled to find any kind of consistency. There are worse teams in the division but if they do not find any cohesion in their play, they could well face a season of struggle.
- TEB prediction – home win
- Who Scored prediction – away win
BETTING ODDS (courtesy of Paddy Power)
- Home – 11/8
- Draw – 23/10
- Away – 11/5
- Both teams to score – 8/11