Chelsea and West Ham go head to head against each other in the London Derby in the very first game week of the Premier League. It could potentially be the game of the opening weekend, something that really sets the Premier League mood. While Chelsea hope to kickstart their new era under new boss Antonio Conte, West Ham will be looking to build on the solid last campaign they had. Finishing seventh in the Premier League, and recording the side’s record points total in the process, was certainly not a bad way for Slaven Bilic to start his West Ham reign and a good follow up season from the East Londoners can really help them make their name among the giants of English football.
West Ham could be on the brink of entering the club’s golden era in their first season at the Olympic Stadium and a two-legged playoff against Astra Giurgiu standing in their way for making it to the group stage of the Europa League. The Hammers used the transfer window really well to bring quality players like Andre Ayew, Sofiane Feghouli, Gokhan Tore, Havard Nordtveit et al and probably Bilic is still not done in the market. We can expect a classic when Chelsea host their crosstown rivals West Ham on Monday.
Here is the predicted West Ham lineup against Chelsea.
Spanish custodian Adrian is likely to start under the bar ahead of Randolph. Michail Antonio is likely to get the nod ahead of Sam Byram on the right despite questions being asked about his defensive abilities. West Ham lost Aaron Cresswell to an injury for the rest of this calendar year but Arthur Masuaku has been brought in and will make his league debut against the Blues. Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna are likely to be the centre-back pair for the East Londoners.
Summer signing from Borussia Monchengladbach Havard Nordtveit is likely to start as the defensive midfielder. The Norwegian’s main job will be to protect the back four and spray passes all around the pitch to initiate counter attacks. Skipper Mark Noble and Cheikhou Kouyate will start as the two box to box midfielders providing the industry and creativity.
Two summer signings Andre Ayew and Sofiane Feghouli are likely to start on the two flanks while Andy Carroll will spearhead the attack. Last season’s standout performer for West Ham Dimitri Payet is likely to be introduced from the bench.