West Ham United will look to climb back into the Premier League’s top six later today as the Hammers host relegation-threatened Burnley, who sacked long-term manager Sean Dyche earlier this week.
With just eight games to go and the Clarets four points from safety, the Lancashire club bizarrely parted ways with Dyche after ten years of service with West Ham’s visitors looking to secure an eighth top-flight campaign out of the last nine.
On paper, the game is certainly a good opportunity for David Moyes’ men to secure a crucial three points.
However, having played in the Europa League on Thursday night as the Irons advanced to the semi-finals with a 3-0 win in Lyon, the Scotsman may be keen to bring in some fresh legs.
One player who should certainly be considered is playmaker Said Benrahma, who came off of the bench in France on Thursday.
It certainly seems as though Moyes likes to have either Manuel Lanzini or Benrahma in the middle of an attacking midfield trio as part of a 4-2-3-1 set-up. Therefore, with the former starting on Thursday, now it makes sense to unleash the Algerian.
The 26-year-old has progressed well this campaign after a shaky first term in claret and blue having joined in summer 2020 from Brentford.
When considering Benrahma’s form in front of goal, the Algerian certainly beats Lanzini to a starting spot with the Argentinian scoring six goals and providing three assists this season.
Moreover, the 29-year-old has only just returned to action recently after being involved in a serious car crash that thankfully left the midfielder with just minor injuries.
After an impressive second campaign at the London Stadium, the 26-year-old has won over more of the Hammers fanbase, with former player Joe Cole labelling the attacking midfielder as “unplayable” earlier this season.
The Irons will have to find a way in unlocking a Burnley defence that, despite their position, has conceded just 44 goals this term, the second-best tally in the bottom half of the table. Having Benrahma’s creativity will certainly help their cause.
Victory will see Moyes’ men leapfrog both Arsenal and Manchester United into fifth after yesterday’s results, making this afternoon’s clash at the London Stadium another vital game for their fate.