David Moyes

David Moyes
Photo by Arfa Griffiths/West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Moyes: West Ham needs to overcome letdown of errors in Liverpool loss

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A Lukasz Fabianski howler opened the door for Liverpool, and the soon-to-be Premier League champions again handed a down day to David Moyes.

[ MORE: Klopp reacts to comeback ]

The Reds came back to win 3-2 against West Ham at Anfield to move 22 points clear of the chasing pack, keeping the Irons in the drop zone.

West Ham led 2-1 at Anfield when a low-pace Mohamed Salah shot squired through Fabianski’s hands and legs en route to the final score.

David Moyes says Fabianski’s error and how he rebounds from it can be a microcosm of what the Irons need to survive the current relegation scrap.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

“He’s done great for us but when you’re in a position, you make individual mistakes you need to quickly get over them and get on with it and not let it happen again. Our real big games start now. Liverpool wasn’t a big game and Manchester City wasn’t a big game. The big games come in the next eight to 10 weeks and I need everyone in the best form they can be in.”

Moyes believes the Irons had a good plan for the day but made two too many mistakes.

“I felt as if we’d done a really good disciplined, organized defensive performance at Manchester City. It’s a different game to the way Liverpool plays I felt tonight we could maybe try and go another way and see if we could get a result here, but it’s not easy because whatever you do Liverpool have got the ammunition to do something different. We had actually made plans to chop and change two or three times during the game… but overall it wasn’t good enough.”

West Ham hosts Southampton next before meeting Arsenal away, Wolves at home, Spurs away, and Chelsea at home. That’s a heavy lift, and it’s true that they wouldn’t have expected much from Man City and Liverpool but it’s not getting that much easier.

Premier League Preview: Man City v. West Ham

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 Sunday preview: Bournemouth travel to Sheffield United; City host West Ham

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Sunday’s slate of Premier League fixtures promise to have a wide-range of action, as a pair of top-six sides host a pair of bottom dwellers.

[ STREAM: Every PL match live ]

Sheffield United vs. Bournemouth  — 9:00 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

90 minutes against Bournemouth stands in the way from Sheffield United packing their bags and heading off to Dubai for a week-long winter break. 13 matches and a handful of wins also stands in the way from Sheffield United from qualifying for European competition next season.

The Blades, who are easily the healthiest side in the league, head into Sunday’s match with two thirds of a season for the ages: 36 points in 25 matches, one point behind fifth-place Tottenham – all on their first year back in the league.

Despite the European conversation around the Blades, the mythical 40-point mark remains the objective for Chris Wilder. Once there, they’ll take it one match at a time.

“Forty has always been a big number for a newly-promoted side,” he said leading up to Sunday’s bout. “After we get that it’ll always be about the next three points.”

Eddie Howe‘s Bournemouth, with two consecutive wins under their belts, could be in worse shape. The two-point cushion between (and the back-to-back wins) has been a morale boost for the side, which may be an x-factor on Sunday.

“I don’t think anything has necessarily changed,” Howe said. “We won the game against Brighton, it was a key game. It was a battling performance, a performance full of heart. Villa was a much-improved overall performance. The challenge now is to back it up.”

INJURIES: Sheffield United — OUT: None | Bournemouth — OUT: Danjuma (ankle), Brooks (ankle), Daniels (knee), Kelly (hamstring), Mepham (knee); SUSPENDED: Lerma (one match)

Manchester City vs. West Ham — 11:30 a.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com

You can’t talk Manchester City without brining up their 22-point deficit to leaders Liverpool. You just can’t. Not even Pep Guardiola was able to circumvent the conversation leading up to Sunday’s game against a depleted West Ham. 

“We cannot deny the gap is big,” he said. “We didn’t expect to be 22 points behind but it’s the reality. We have to accept it and learn from it.”

The question then becomes: Can Manchester City, without Raheem Sterling and all of its flaws, finish the season second best? Leicester City are currently only two points behind, while Chelsea have much ground to make up 10 points back.

It’s far too early to know the answer, but matches like Sunday’s at the Etihad, against inferior opponents, can’t be taken for granted. Guardiola and company have fallen for that too many times this season. They can’t afford to do so again, surely.

As expected, West Ham, who are desperately trying to get out of the relegation threat, are ready to leave it all out on the field, even if the odds stack against them. They have no choice.

“The ones coming up at the moment look much harder, but it’s where we are at the end of the season that will really count,” Irons manager David Moyes said ahead of Sunday’s clash.

INJURIES: Manchester City — OUT: Sané (knee), Sterling (hamstring); SUSPENDED: Zinchenko (one match) | West Ham — OUT: Felipe Anderson (back), Yarmolenko (thigh), Wilshere (hernia)

Moyes admits Rice could leave this summer, but hopes he won’t

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Declan Rice is well on his way to becoming one of the most wanted English players in the world, and West Ham United manager David Moyes has admitted it will be hard to keep hold of the 21-year-old this summer.

[ MORE: Guardiola hopes, thinks Messi will finish career at Barcelona ]

Jadon Sancho will remain top of that list until he leaves Borussia Dortmund for upward of $200 million, but Rice has quickly climbed the ranks since making his West Ham debut three short years ago. Not only has he shown well for himself, but Moyes also admitted that Rice “is carrying a lot of the team at the moment,” leaving one to wonder just what will become of the squad if/when he departs  — quotes from the Guardian:

“In my mind, he is arguably the best holding midfield player in the country and the best thing about Declan is he will get better. Declan is carrying a lot of the team at the moment and he’s the one who will carry on from Mark Noble when it comes to an end for him.

“Quite often when building a club you have to sell. I hope it’s not the case with Declan but I said the same with Wayne Rooney and Joleon Lescott [at Everton]. But the team got better because we were able to sign the right players to replace them. If that ever came around, I’d hope we’d be able to do the same here as well.”

[ MORE: Report: Bayern make $22-million bid for USMNT’s Dest ]

Rice is already good enough to break into the first-team rotation of any Premier League club not named Liverpool, and as Moyes rightly points out, he’s only going to get better. Given his premier combination of talent, age and nationality, Rice will easily top the $100-million mark either this summer or the one to follow.

Fans of every one of the PL’s “big-six” sides — yes, even Liverpool — should be hoping it’s their club that lands this special talent.

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.