West Ham’s Ones to Watch – who’s our biggest competition this season?
Author: Emily Pulham. Published: 2 November 2018 at 8:53am
Written by : @jackoflaherty
We currently sit in 13th place, level on points with Palace and Burnley, but 5 points adrift from our most recent opponents Leicester. Now over a quarter of the way through the season that 5-point gap is becoming worrying – and we need to be wary of a number of teams around us who we must to beat in order to close that gap and push towards the top half of the table.
The 1-0 loss to Brighton was a real disappointment. We lacked any real energy or imagination in a game that was very winnable. These are the games we have to be winning this season to push on towards the top end of the table. The results we get around the mid-table teams around us are what is going to decide our season: whether we push on, or have another nervy end to the season.
Beating West Ham was the first of three 1-0 wins for Brighton (who also beat Wolves and Newcastle.) Results against teams in this type of position have pushed them up the table – and they are the type of games we aren’t winning. That will be the difference between us come the end of the season.
Despite their run of recent bad results – and upcoming tough games – we need to remain wary of them come the end of the season if we don’t begin to pull away from the bottom half on our own accord. Palace have a strong squad; Milivojević and Zaha are solid players who are a threat to any team and will help Palace to pick up points against teams at the lower end of the table.
We are yet to play Palace, with our clashes falling either side of Christmas, and a result in both games will be massive towards the end of the season points tally and table.
The capabilities of the Leicester squad are well known. The pace of Vardy, their defensive strength and Maddison in midfield make them tough opponents, especially at home. A result away from home would have been huge. We need to pick up some points soon before the gap becomes too large and we see ourselves in another relegation battle.
Beating the teams around you are what defines your season. We had good results against United and Chelsea, but the teams around are the teams we need to be focusing on and to ensure we get a good result. We have games against the likes of Burnley, Cardiff, Newcastle and Huddersfield all coming up which will be huge in pushing us towards the top half.
We learned after the game against Leicester that the focus on the importance of results and points can so quickly be put into perspective. With that in mind, I would like to take this chance to extend my deepest condolences to all those affected by the horrific tragedy at Leicester and wish the entire club well as they mourn the loss of their Chairman, and bravely move forwards with the remainder of their season.