Jack Wilshere

Premier League Preview: Man City v. West Ham
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Premier League Preview: Man City v. West Ham

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Manchester City takes the pitch at the Etihad Stadium for the first time since UEFA hammered it with a two-year Champions League ban when it hosts West Ham United on Wednesday (Watch Live at 3 a.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

Manager Pep Guardiola has reportedly stated his commitment to the club ahead of the match, which was rescheduled from last weekend after Storm Ciara hit England.

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE

Second-place City opens the day 25 points back of leaders Liverpool, while West Ham is one point behind 17th place.

The Irons have not won a Premier League match since New Year’s Day, David Moyes‘ first match in charge.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 


Injuries/suspensions

Man City: OUT —  Oleksandr Zinchenko, Raheem Sterling, Leroy Sane. QUESTIONABLE — Aymeric Laporte, Benjamin Mendy

West Ham: OUT — Jack Wilshere, Andriy Yarmolenko. QUESTIONABLE — Felipe Anderson


Probable lineups

Man City: Ederson; Cancelo, Otamendi, Fernandinho, Walker, Rodri, Gundogan, De Bruyne, D. Silva, Aguero, Mahrez.

West Ham: Fabianski; Cresswell, Ogbonna, Diop, Zabaleta, Rice, Soucek, Noble, Snodgrass, Haller, Antonio.


What they’re saying

West Ham’s David Moyes on the relegation fight: “I’m more than confident we will climb the table. I think the players here are more than capable. I think we have got a good group. I think they are all fully aware of the situation we’re in and the improvement we need to make to make sure we’re not in the bottom three, and I’m sure come the end we will do.”


Prediction

A blowout. While West Ham has the urgency to get out of the drop zone, City will be pouring its full focus into finding form for next week’s Champions League tie with Real Madrid. City, 4-1.

PL Preview: Man City v. West Ham

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  • Man City has won 7 straight PL games v. West Ham
  • Sergio Aguero has scored 5 straight PL goals for Man City, a joint-club record
  • West Ham has scored 10 away goals, 19th in the Premier League

Two teams that desperately need a return to good form meet at the Etihad on Sunday as Manchester City hosts West Ham, with kickoff Sunday at 2:45 p.m. ET live on NBCSN or live online at NBCSports.com.

Manchester City returns home licking its wounds after a Premier League defeat to Tottenham that saw Pep Guardiola‘s side drop a massive 22 points back of Liverpool in the title race and leaves them just two points ahead of third-placed Leicester City. That loss came on the heels of a 1-0 defeat to rivals Manchester United in the second leg of their Carabao Cup semifinal matchup that adds to the struggles despite that fact the club still advanced to the final on aggregate.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Guardiola will be without playmaker Raheem Sterling, who was injured in the Spurs loss and will be out “weeks” the boss confirmed Friday morning, and the suspended Oleksandr Zinchenko who was sent off in the match. Should Aymeric Laporte return to the lineup, it will be interesting to see whether he replaces natural center-back Nicolas Otamendi, or pushes Fernandinho into midfield.

West Ham is in far worse form, dropping into the relegation zone thanks to a stretch of eight league games with just one win and five total points gained. That point haul leaves the Hammers last in the Premier League form table over that stretch, and David Moyes continues to struggle finding his best eleven. It doesn’t help that playmaker Felipe Anderson is still a doubt for the match despite having returned to training after recovering from rib and back injuries.

Injuries/suspensions

Man City: OUT – Raheem Sterling (hamstring), Leroy Sane (knee), Oleksandr Zinchenko (suspended). QUESTIONABLE – Benjamin Mendy (muscle fatigue), Aymeric Laporte (fatigue).

West Ham: OUT – Andriy Yarmolenko (hamstring), Jack Wilshere (groin). QUESTIONABLE – Felipe Anderson (rib).


Probable lineups

Man City: Ederson; Mendy, Laporte, Otamendi, Walker; Fernandinho, Gundogan, De Bruyne; Mahrez, Silva, Aguero.

West Ham: Fabianski; Fredericks, Ogbonna, Balbuena, Cresswell; Rice, Soucek, Noble; Snodgrass, Antonio, Haller


What they’re saying

Man City manager Pep Guardiola on Liverpool title gap: “The last two seasons, an owner from the Premier League said: ‘That cannot happen again, it’s not good for the Premier League that City win the title in that way’ [by so many points]. So now, with Liverpool, you have to be concerned for the Premier League!”

West Ham manager David Moyes on brutal upcoming schedule: “What matters is where we are at the end, not the middle of February. You play everybody twice so come the end of the season we’ll give ourselves a good chance of being in a strong position but we have to win games.”


Prediction

West Ham is in a very bad way, and David Moyes has not figured out how best to organize his squad. That could prove to be dangerous because Man City is out for blood, having failed to win or even score a goal in its last two matches. Still, City was good against Spurs and simply failed to score. The hosts will get back on track before pausing for February break, winning 3-1. This is as good a team as any for Man City to have crop up on the schedule during a tough time…City has beaten West Ham in seven straight Premier League meetings, outscoring the Hammers 23-3 during that stretch.

PL Preview: West Ham v. Liverpool

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  • Liverpool has won 30 of its last 31 Premier League fixtures
  • West Ham is winless in its last 6 PL games against Liverpool
  • The Hammers have just 11 points at home this season, joint-low in the PL

Liverpool can go an obscene 19 points clear at the top of the Premier League table with a win over West Ham on Wednesday, with kickoff from London Stadium at 2:45 p.m. ET live on NBCSN or live online at NBCSports.com.

The Reds will be without Sadio Mane who pulled up in the first half of the win over Wolves. The news was positive, but still the argument could easily be made that Mane is the most important player in the Liverpool lineup, and replacing him will give Jurgen Klopp a headache. He could start Divock Origi on the wing in a direct replacement, but Origi is a striker by nature and would make things narrow on the left flank. He could also move Salah to the left and insert Xherdan Shaqiri on the right, but there’s no guarantee that the Swiss international will be fit enough to play.

Still, Liverpool will be massive favorites to build on its winning streak against a West Ham side limping into the match. The Hammers are vulnerable with a long injury list of their own, with just one win since the festive period. Felipe Anderson, Andriy Yarmolenko, and Jack Wilshere are the most significant of the injured West Ham army, but certainly not the only ones. By the most recent reports, five players will miss the match with another two to be assessed before the match.

The Hammers are only out of the relegation zone thanks to goal differential, and with a brutal upcoming fixture slate that includes another against Liverpool plus games against Man City, Arsenal, Spurs, Wolves, and Chelsea through the end of March, West Ham will have to scrap for every point available.

Injuries/suspensions

West Ham: OUT – Ryan Fredericks (hamstring), Felipe Anderson (back), Andriy Yarmolenko (thigh), Arthur Masuaku (knee), Jack Wilshere (groin). QUESTIONABLE – Robert Snodgrass (knee), Lukasz Fabianski (thigh).

Liverpool: OUT – Sadio Mane (thigh muscle), James Milner (thigh), Nathaniel Clyne (ACL). QUESTIONABLE – Xherdan Shaqiri (calf).


Probable lineups

West Ham: Randolph; Cresswell, Ogbonna, Diop, Zabaleta; Snodgrass, Noble, Rice, Antonio; Lanzini, Haller.

Liverpool: Alisson; Robertson, Gomez, van Dijk, Alexander-Arnold; Henderson, Wijnaldum, Oxlade-Chamberlain; Origi, Firmino, Salah.


What they’re saying

West Ham manager on being huge underdogs: “Everybody gets the chance to throw a punch at some point along the line, and sometimes you can get a lucky one. I’ve never gone into any game not expecting to win. Quite often, you don’t always win, but I really do expect the players to go out there, put a show on, and try and win. If that’s won by a set-piece, a flukey goal, I wouldn’t be bothered. That’s been my attitude throughout my whole career: I want to win. We’ll do everything we can to get points where we can.”

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp on how West Ham will play: “It will be a rather defensive line-up [from West Ham]. If it’s four in the back or five in the back, I don’t know, but we have to be ready for a big fight. They want to strike back, they have a tough program coming up, everybody knows that. They have no points to waste, no time to waste.”


Prediction:

Liverpool is without Sadio Mane, and that’s notable in any Premier League match, but against West Ham it shouldn’t matter. The Reds have been utterly unbeatable defensively, and against a West Ham side missing Felipe Anderson, Jack Wilshere, and Arthur Masuaku plus a banged up Robert Snodgrass, an eighth clean sheet in the last nine matches is likely. The Reds put on a clinic in a comprehensive 3-0 victory.

West Ham goalkeeper Fabianski exits with hip injury

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New West Ham manager David Moyes hasn’t even been on the job two weeks, and he already faces a serious injury hurdle.

Goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski went down in the 15th minute of Friday’s match against Sheffield United with what looked to be a significant hip injury.

The Polish international went to take a goal kick and immediately put his hand up for a substitution. Within seconds, he showed clear frustration and grabbed at his hip, receiving lengthy treatment on the pitch and eventually needing to be substituted. As Fabianski came off, he had a clearly despondent look on his face.

Fabianski has been one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier League this season, especially according to expected goals faced. The 34-year-old leads the English top flight in outperforming expected goals faced, saving almost a half-goal expected per game. That can add up massively over the course of the campaign, having made tenth appearance of the season today.

Fabianski missed nearly three months with a hip injury earlier this season, and could be set for another long spell on the bench. West Ham struggled mightily in his absence, with two wins and eight losses in 11 Premier League matches, earning five points. With Fabianski this season, they have lost just two of nine, picking up 15 points in those nine games.

Hip injuries can be troublesome when more serious, especially if muscles are involved. West Ham midfielder Jack Wilshere has been out since mid-October with a groin injury that has been difficult to diagnose. USMNT midfielder Tyler Adams has also recently dealt with a mystery hip injury that kept him out for months, unable to determine the root cause of the problem.

Premier League Preview: Sheffield United v. West Ham United

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The Premier League gets back in business on Friday at Bramall Lane when Sheffield United hosts West Ham United (Watch Live at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

Their table fortunes are indicative of the Premier League’s lack of clear tiers so far this season.

Blades are two points off fifth and seven back of the Top Four, while West Ham is two points off the drop zone and a win off 11th.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

West Ham cruised past Bournemouth in opening David Moyes‘ second tenure with the Irons, while the Blades are coming off back-to-back losses and are winless in three.

The sides met Oct. 26 in London, with Lys Mousset‘s goal leveling the line after Robert Snodgrass put West Ham up at home.

WATCH LIVE, ONLINE, HERE


Injuries/suspensions

Sheffield United: OUT —  None. QUESTIONABLE — Michael Verrips, Simon Moore.

West Ham United: OUT — Michail Antonio, Andriy Yarmolenko, Ryan Fredericks, Mark Noble, Jack Wilshere. QUESTIONABLE — Aaron Cresswell, Mark Noble.


Probable lineups

Sheffield United: Henderson; Egan, Basham, O’Connell, Stevens, Norwood, Fleck, Besic, Baldock, Mousset, McGoldrick.

West Ham United: Fabianski, Cresswell, Ogbonna, Balbuena, Fredericks, Rice, Noble, Fornals, Anderson, Snodgrass, Haller.


What they’re saying

Blades defender John Egan on rebounding from tough losses: “They were really tough trips to (Man) City and Liverpool. They’re probably the two best teams in the country, so going away to them was always going to be tough. The Man City game, we were quite unlucky not to get a result. … The Liverpool game was a bit of an eye-opener for us. We weren’t at our best, which we have to be to try and get a result. We came away from those two games, saw where we went wrong and we have to learn from it. All we can do is try and get better so next time we play these teams we have a better chance of getting a result.”

West Ham boss Moyes on transfer links: “I think West Ham have been linked with just about every player in the country and I’m here a week and a half, so it’s interesting, but I think that’s the norm for here. Quite often we are linked with a lot of players. We won’t be bringing in a bundle of players in, but obviously we’d like to add to the squad if we can. Gedson Fernandes is one name we’re talking about. He’s a young player with potential, probably more for the future. From that point of view, I’d like to bring young players in for the future, players we can look to build to get a strong, young team, but I also have to be wary that I need players who are ready for now and can feature in the first team as well.”


Prediction

The Blades are a handful, but West Ham’s new lease on life also feels pretty real. How about another split of the spoils and 1-1 at Bramall Lane?