West Ham vs. Liverpool: Team News, Lineups, Facts, Preview & Prediction

Liverpool

Brendan Rodgers’ Merseyside Reds travel down south to West London to face Sam Allardyce’s Hammers this weekend. After a rather nervous mid-week encounter with Belarusian side Ludogoretz Razgrad in which an injury time Steven Gerrard penalty came to the rescue, Rodgers’ side will prepare for the Hammers game – their 3rd game in a week’s time. Fatigue and fitness may play a huge role in the clash against Hammers who are known for their physicality. West Ham on the other hand will be playing at Upton Park buoyed with their 3-3 draw with Hull City last Monday night. A clash between Rodgers’ Reds and Big Sam’s Hammers ensues at Upton Park as title-chasing Liverpool look to overturn top-10 hopefuls West Ham United.

Form

Liverpool enter this game after a very indifferent couple of games following the international break. A frustrating loss to Paul Lambert’s stubborn Aston Villa at home have left the Anfield club wounded. A roller-coaster final few minutes against Belarusian minnow Ludogoretz saw the 5-time Champions scrape to 2-1 win on their return to Europe’s elite competition after 5 years. While form may not be particularly rosy for the Reds, it doesn’t take much for Brendan Rodgers side to bounce back as they’ve proved evidently last season. Having lost back-to-back games only once in his 3 seasons at the helm at Liverpool, Rodgers will demand from his players nothing less than 3 points as the rest of the pack try to keep up with rampant Chelsea.

Squad

Injuries have plagued Liverpool’s start to the season greatly. The absence of striker Daniel Sturridge has hit last season’s runners-up leaving them devoid of ideas and cohesion. The 25 year old English international striker picked up a nasty thigh injury while away on international duty. Sturridge who bagged 20+ goals last season, second only to the effervescent Luis Suarez who swapped Liverpool for Barcelona this summer, Sturridge showed glimpses of striking a lethal partnership alongside Mario Balotelli and Raheem Sterling.

While Sturridge is still out injured and working his way back to full fitness, the return of Welsh midfielder Joe Allen and Slovakian centre-half Martin Skrtel have boosted the strength of Rodgers squad. German under-21 international Emre Can is out for another month atleast after suffering a serious ankle injury during the international break.

Fabio Borini is in contention for a place in starting XI after an impactful introduction against Ludogoretz in the Champions League. The form of Phillipe Coutinho will be a cause of concern for Rodgers and Liverpool fans as the Brazilian failed to replicate his pre-season form. Adam Lallana still looks short of match fitness although the availability of Lazar Markovic will add competition for places in the midfield

2 wins and 2 losses out of the opening 4 fixtures isn’t exactly title-challenging form but leave it to Brendan Rodgers to get his team sorted and back in shape before too long. The loss of Luis Suarez left a huge void in the Liverpool squad, while Rodgers has signed plenty of potential; his new players still lack the cohesion of a top quality European side. While the Hammers will Hammer, will pacey Liverpool blitz Big Sam’s side in the way they blitzed side after side last season ? Only one way to find out.

Match Facts:

  • There have been four own goals scored in the last seven Premier League meetings between Liverpool and West Ham.
  • Steven Gerrard has scored seven Barclays Premier League goals against West Ham and six of them have been netted at the Boleyn Ground.
  • Liverpool have won eight and lost just one of the last 11 Premier League meetings with the Hammers (D2).
  • There have been five goals in the five minutes leading up to half time of the last five Premier League matches between Liverpool and West Ham.
  • West Ham’s starting XI versus Hull City in their last match had an average age of 26y 355d – their youngest in the Premier League since May 2011
  • If Liverpool score in this game they will set a new club top-flight record of scoring in 17 consecutive away games.
  • Liverpool have scored 33 goals in their last 11 Premier League away games.
  • Mario Balotelli has scored just one goal in his last 18 Premier League appearances.
  • West Ham have scored four goals from outside the box this season, matching their total from 2013-14.

Facts compiled from uk.eurosport.yahoo.com

West Ham vs. Liverpool Possible Starting Lineups:

West Ham: Adrian; Jenkinson, Reid, Tomkins, Cresswell; Kouyate, Song, Noble; Downing, Zarate, Valencia

Liverpool: Mignolet; Manquillo, Lovren, Sakho, Moreno; Gerrard, Henderson, Coutinho, Sterling; Balotelli, Lambert

Prediction:

An 1-2 victory for the travelling side.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *