David Moyes has plenty of decisions to make as his West Ham side kickstart a busy festive period with the visit of Brighton and Hove Albion to the London Stadium this evening.
The Irons have lost back-to-back Premier League matches but have maintained their place in the top-four, for the time being, having been defeated by Wolverhampton Wanderers and defending champions Manchester City in the last two weeks.
It’s their third game in the space of a week and they’ll continue to come thick and fast, with Chelsea at the weekend, Dinamo Zagreb a week Thursday and another four games before Christmas day.
Therefore, the Scot must be considering rotation, especially as he has been dealing with injuries to one key area of the squad but what sort of lineup could we see in east London tonight?
Here’s what Football FanCast are predicting…
There could be four changes from the side that tasted defeat at the Etihad only a few days ago.
In goal, veteran shot-stopper Lukasz Fabianski is expected to maintain his place, with PSG loanee Alphonse Areola only utilised in the cup competitions, though his backline will look a little different.
Aaron Cresswell is a major doubt ahead of kick-off and it’s unlikely that he will be risked, given how many matches are upcoming. Instead, we could see Ben Johnson switch sides and Vladimir Coufal returning at right-back.
The £18m-rated Czech international, dubbed a “machine” by skipper Mark Noble, has been usurped by the aforementioned academy gem ever since his injury, so this would be a good opportunity to stake a big claim.
Whilst, Craig Dawson may be rested in favour of Issa Diop, who partners fellow compatriot Kurt Zouma in the middle.
Moyes has a massive decision to make on Tomas Soucek amid his poor and inconsistent form struggles. He may well keep his place for now, alongside vice-captain Declan Rice.
Further up the pitch, we’re expecting to see Jarrod Bowen return to the starting XI, with Pablo Fornals occupying the other flank, whilst Said Benrahma could be axed for Manuel Lanzini after the Argentine’s goalscoring impact up in Manchester.
Michail Antonio has also struggled lately, scoring once in eight games, but as their only centre-forward – one that can flick the switch at any time – he should remain up top.
AND in other news, West Ham eye bargain £12m swoop after injury blow…