After a tough game against Manchester United, West Ham will face Manchester City in the FA Cup third round this Friday. The Hammers have recovered after a bad start but a run of tough fixtures will test their mettle once again.
West Ham were unlucky in their last game against Manchester United as Sofiane Feghouli was harshly sent off to make things really difficult for the hosts. Yet, they matched Manchester United toe to toe for most parts of the game despite being a man down. Eventually, though, United’s quality came to the fore and they won via strikes from Juan Mata and Zlatan Ibrahimović.
The Hammers did have some good chances in the game and will fancy their chances against Manchester City who haven’t been convincing enough. They did, however, pick up a win against Burnley with 10 men.
The head to head between the two sides is pretty even considering the last five games. West Ham have won twice, lost twice and the other game was a stalemate. The Hammers do have what it takes to upset City even though the Sky Blues have the better team on paper.
It’s a cup game, so never discount anything. City are likely to rotate as they have a busy future list but West Ham don’t have anything else other than the League and the FA Cup, so we might see a regular team rather than some of the fringe players getting a run out.
Here’s the predicted West Ham lineup.
Adrian is likely to get some game time in the Cup after Randolph has replaced the Spaniard in the League. Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna are expected to start at the heart of the defence. The two had an impressive game against Man United and were unlucky to concede two as the second one was clearly offside. Havard Nordtveit and Aaron Cresswell are likely to start as the two full-backs. Cresswell will be expected to cause some problems up front with his driving runs on the left-hand channel.
In the midfield, Pedro Obiang will play as the deepest of the three midfielders. He’ll be supported by Mark Noble and Edmilson Fernandes in the midfield.
After his red card was rescinded, Sofiane Feghouli is likely to start on the right. Michail Antonio has done a good job whenever he has been played up front and he could lead the line again. Dimitri Payet is expected to start on the left and he’ll want to put an impressive performance against a top side.