West Ham United are no more in the ‘top four’ race having failed to maintain the momentum in recent outings. But their stunning upsurge under David Moyes deserves plaudits and a win against West Brom on Wednesday night might see the battle for a place in the Europa League go down to the wire next weekend.
Despite enduring relegation, the Baggies would fight for their pride as they did against Liverpool right until the final moments before Alisson Becker scored an incredible late winner. The Hammers must regroup themselves for the midweek clash and script a strong finish to attain European football.
Predicted 4-2-3-1 West Ham United Lineup Against West Bromwich Albion
Veteran Lukasz Fabianski has been majestic between the sticks and should exhibit his stewardship once more from the last line of defence. He is expected to deal with an array of crosses and long balls throughout the contest.
Angelo Ogbonna returned to the heart of the backline against Brighton and should keep his place alongside Craig Dawson for the experience he holds. Vladimír Coufal has been a revelation as a right fullback, whereas Aaron Cresswell is expected to operate from the left with Arthur Masuaku still sidelined with a knee strain.
Declan Rice is back from a brief injury spell and should dominate the midfield game as a double pivot along with Tomáš Souček. Soucek’s aerial threat from set-pieces must be utilized in the remaining two fixtures due to the lack of goals from the centre-forwards.
The winter arrival of Jesse Lingard (on loan from Manchester United) bolstered the Irons in the attacking third. The Three Lions star must keep on firing in and producing assists from his ‘number 10’ role in order to grab a place in Gareth Southgate’s squad for the upcoming Euros. Jarrod Bowen is struggling of late and the gaffer should give a nod to Said Benrahma following his exquisite late equalizer against the Seagulls. Manuel Lanzini is likely to miss the trip with a thigh injury and the Hammers are tipped to rely on Pablo Fornals once more from the left for his high work ethics.
Michail Antonio had a stop-start campaign for fitness reasons, but the Englishman is back in action and set to spearhead the West Ham attack once more. His brace against Burnley earned them a comeback victory at Turf Moor and the fans would demand a similar show on the road. Andriy Yarmolenko remains another versatile option who could slot in as a ‘False 9’ if the situation demands.