Aug 13, 2017
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Three key stats ahead of Manchester United vs West Ham

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The opening weekend of the Premier League has produced some magnificent entertainment, with 25 goal scored in the eight games played over Friday and Saturday.

The final game of the weekend will come at Old Trafford, where Manchester United will entertain West Ham in the late Sunday kick-off. Victor Lindelöf, Nemanja Matic and Romelu Lukaku could all make the Premier League debuts for Manchester United, as the club look to bounce back from their disappointing, 2-1 defeat to Real Madrid in the European Super Cup.

West Ham have also recruited well during the summer, with former Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez the pick of four quality signings made by manager Slaven Bilic. The Mexican is likely to start against his old club, with Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta and £25 million-man Marko Arnautovic also set to feature.

With so many new faces in show, the game is likely to be intriguing. Here are three key stats ahead of kick-off: –

112 – Mourinho enjoys a Sunday home game

This will be the 113th time that Jose Mourinho has led a team out at home on Sunday during his managerial career, and incredibly he has not lost one of these encounters.

The Portuguese has won 86 of these matches in a career that has also seen him manage Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid, while he has drawn the remaining 26.

This underlines the challenge facing West Ham at Old Trafford, particularly when you consider that the Hammers have also lost 17 of their 21 Premier League away games against Manchester United.

So if West Ham do prevail, they will have to break a record that stretches back more than 15 years.

3 – Does history beckon for Joe Hart?

Joe Hart has enjoyed a torrid time during the last two years, having been frozen out by Pep Guardiola at Manchester City and received a barrage of criticism for his England performances during Euro 2016.

Hart will hope that a season-long loan move to West Ham will allow him to rebuild his career, and he can get off to the best possible start by carving a little piece of history at Old Trafford this afternoon.

If he successfully shuts out Manchester United, Hart will become the first visiting goalkeeper to keep three clean sheets at Old Trafford in the Premier League. His previous two came with City in March 2014 and October 2015, with the first coming during a 3-0 win and the second in a 0-0 stalemate.

We reckon that West Ham will settle for either of these results this afternoon, but a clean sheet will definitely boost Hart’s confidence for the remainder of the season.

10 – Opening day blues for the Hammers

West Ham are used to difficult opening day fixtures, having visited Arsenal during the first weekend of the 2015/16 season and Stamford Bridge the following year.

While the Hammers performed impressive during a 2-0 win at the Emirates to years ago, they have generally struggled to achieve a positive result on the first weekend of the season in recent times. In fact, they have lost 10 opening day fixtures since 1992, which is more than any other top-flight team during the Premier League era.

History would suggest that this is hardly the place to come to reverse such a trend, particularly with United having spent so heavily during the summer and Jose Mourinho desperate for his team to hit the ground running this season.

Article Categories:
Manchester United · West Ham United

I am a passionate sports fan and football writer from the UK, with particular knowledge of the English Premier League.

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