A London derby will kick off the proceedings in the Premier League this weekend as West Ham United welcome Tottenham to the London Stadium. There is no love lost between these two clubs and both support bases will be desperate to get the bragging rights. The Hammers have a good record in this fixture and have won their last two home matches against Spurs. Another win this weekend would provide a shot in the arm for their season and consolidate the position of Slaven Bilic.
After a slow start to the season, West Ham have taken four points from their last two matches and they will be looking to climb up the table during the coming weeks. Bilic remains a manager under pressure, but the players remain behind him and have shown some improvement in their performances during recent weeks. The return of Andy Carroll has helped massively and he could play a key role this weekend.
Tottenham are having a completely different season, as they are now struggling at home and doing excellently away. They will be full of confidence heading into this weekend as they have won both of their away fixtures to date in the Premier League. Mauricio Pochettino will be looking for his team to challenge for the title. In order to do that, they need to be taking maximum points from matches such as this one, especially after recent slip-ups at home.
West Ham have shown improvement during recent weeks and have taken four points from their last two fixtures without conceding a goal. After conceding ten goals in their first three matches, this is an encouraging sign and suggests they are making good progress on the training pitch. During the week, they qualified for the fourth round of the Carabao Cup with a comfortable victory over Bolton Wanderers.
Tottenham have taken eight points from their first five matches, which has established the team near the top of the division. However, their inability to win any of their home matches is a concern. That won’t matter this weekend as they will be traveling to the London Stadium. Spurs have scored five goals without conceding once during their opening two away matches. They will be confident on Saturday.
Mark Noble is the most likely midfielder to replace the injured Pedro Obiang, while Marko Arnautovic could be brought back into the team after an impressive showing in the week. Javier Hernandez hasn’t been effective on the wing and could drop to the bench.
Ben Davies should return to left wing-back, which will provide more balance for Tottenham. Mousa Dembele and Serge Aurier could both come in to start after missing out last weekend against Swansea City.
James Collins will be unavailable for the next few weeks after spraining his ankle against West Brom. He will be joined by Pedro Obiang and Manuel Lanzini in sitting out of the match against Spurs. Mark Noble and Edimilson Fernandes are both nearing returns.
Victor Wanyama remains a week away from a return, while Danny Rose and Erik Lamela remain long-term absentees. Ben Davies should be back to start at left wing-back.
Score prediction: West Ham 1-2 Tottenham
This will be a fiery London derby and it would be wrong to rule out the possibility of West Ham gaining another win in this fixture. The Hammers always raise their game when they come up against Tottenham as it is regarded as the Premier League match that supporters most want to win. However, Spurs are impressive on the road and will have most of their first-team available to start. This is likely to be a narrow win for the visitors.