Sunday 27 November 2016

Its Back to the Future as Hammers Finally have Top Strikers Available

While they certainly aren't TC and God, Hammers fans will be cheered by the news that Andy Carroll is available to partner recently returned Diafra Sakho for today's visit to Old Trafford. Slaven Bilic has hinted that Andy might get a place on the bench as he looks to halt the slide into the relegation zone. last week Sakho looked keen but a little ring rusty. Another week will see him closer to match fitness and he will hope to build upon last week's 60 minutes of action.

However, the absence of Winston Reid may prove crucial as James Collins will need to be in top form to manage Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Elsewhere, the problems at right back are again a cause as Bilic looks likely to persist with the Antonio experiment that has repeatedly undone his sides efforts. At this stage Alvaro Arbeloa must be wondering why he was brought into the club as he has been mysteriously left out in the cold. No doubt Rashford and Martial will be looking forward to testing whoever Bilic opts to play at right back.
Mark Noble returns and will hope to help the Hammers to grab a little more than the paltry 33% of possession that they managed against Spurs. Bilic's recent tactic of playing Kouyate in a deeper role has tightened things up at the back but leaves the midfield lacking in bite. Pedro Obiang has stepped up of late but does not have Kouyate's attacking ability and has yet to score for the Hammers.

Meanwhile, in typical Mourinho style, in an effort to destabilise the Hammers camp the Mancs have splattered the media with reports of a 'massive' bid for Dimitri Payet. Graeme Souness has added to the noise by claiming that Payet's contractual capers have upset the dressing room and that he has stopped contributing in the way he was last year. However, the stats suggest otherwise as Payet has created 49 chances so far this season - considerably more than any Man United player which is possibly why Mourinho is interested in him! The Pogba vs Payet aspect of today's encounter will be fascinating.

Kick off today is at 4.30 - just 75 hours later they will be kicking off again as the sides also meet in the League Cup on Wednesday night, again at Old Trafford. A win in either game would greatly ease the growing pressure on SuperSlav.



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