West Ham v Fulham – Match Preview
Author: Brian Knox. Published: 22 February 2019 at 6:27pm
Well it’s been a long time since West Ham United last played a game a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace where I felt we deserved to be more than 1 up at half time but then we struggled to hold on to the lead we did have. In the end we probably did well to hang on for the point.
Fulham come to the London Stadium on a very poor run of form they have lost 5 out of their last 6 games with their only win coming at home against Brighton. They are a huge 8 points from safety and even with all the hype surrounding the appointment of Claudio Ranieri they have not really looked like getting out of trouble and I think they will be joining Huddersfield at the end of the season in The Championship.
Pellegrini’s team also only have the 1 win in their last 6 games but without the 5 defeats. I would imagine the visit of a team in the relegation zone would be the perfect opportunity for us to get back to winning ways. Problem with that is we often seem to struggle when playing the weaker teams.
Team news for the Hammers is will Manu Lanzini be available. After missing the whole season so far he apparently has made great progress and hopefully will stay injury free from now till the summer. I just hope we are not rushing him back, as we have done many times in the past. Balbuena, Reid, Yarmelenko, Sanchez and Wilshire are all still missing. But good news that Nasri may also be available.
Fulham will be missing Alfie Mawson but welcome back Timothy Fosu-Mensah who was not able to play against his parent club last game out.
Predicted Teams :
West Ham United : Fabianski, Zabaleta Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Rice, Snodgrass, Noble, Anderson, Antonio and Hernandez.
Fulham : Rico, Ream, Le Marchand, Odoi, Christie, Chambers, Seri, Bryan, Babel, Schurrle and Mitrovic
The return of Lanzini even if he is on the bench will no doubt be a huge boost for the Hammers. He is someone we have missed during this season when looking for the killer pass to one of our strikers. Arnie remains on the naughty step for the time being hopefully he can motivate himself to put a performance in and then he might be trusted to return. Nasri also coming from the bench gives us plenty of options from the bench and I really do not see us having any problem in this game and we go on to win 3-0 with goals coming from Antonio, Anderson and hopefully Arnie from the bench.