It`s back to the Boleyn Ground this weekend, after the narrow loss up at the Etihad Stadium, as West Ham United welcome relegation threatened Newcastle United to East London for a Premier League fixture. Can the Hammers get back to winning ways after the defeat last week? The fixture also sees Sam Allardyce pitted against the club who dismissed him a few years back.
The visit of Newcastle, to Upton Park, will be like an old boys reunion with Kevin Nolan, Andy Carroll, Sam Allardyce and Alan Pardew all having been involved with both clubs. Speaking about the fixture, Kevin Nolan appears well pumped up for it, remarking,
“I can`t wait for it”
“Going back up to Newcastle was a massive thing for me, and I`m looking forward to this game.”
And so are we!
West Ham Team News:
After the defeat to Manchester City last time out, Sam Allardyce has no new injury concerns. Likely to still be absent are James Tomkins and George McCartney with calf and knee problems respectively. Two recent returnees from the treatment room – Joe Cole and Mark Noble, will be hoping for starts. Kevin Nolan and Andy Carroll will, we hope, be looking to take on their former clubs in what should be an entertaining fixture.
Player to watch: Andy Carroll
With rumours of an England recall floating around, Andy will be keen to keep the momentum going that has seen him score four goals in his last five Premier League games. However, if he does score against his former side (and boyhood idols) don`t expect too much in the way of a goal celebration.
Newcastle Team News:
Alan Pardew will be without the services of Mathieu Debucy after the French defender was sent off last weekend, against Liverpool. Out through injury are Massadio Haidara (hamstring), Tim Krul (shoulder) and Davide Santon and Sylvain Marveaux. However, the defensive capabilities of his side could well be boosted by the welcome return of Fabricio Coloccini.
Player to watch: Papiss Cisse
The Senegalese striker is capable of moments of pure magic, let`s hope he draws a blank against us shall we.
Match Facts & Stats
Newcastle, at Upton Park, have a decent record in recent times winning 3 of their last 5 visits, drawing 1 and losing 1
In all competitive matches, Newcastle also lead the way with 49 wins compared to the 38 registered by West Ham in 122 clashes.
Our officials for this one are;-
Referee – Chris Foy
Assistant – R. Ganfield
Assistant – M. Wilkes
Fourth Official – P. Gibbs
Last season Newcastle, under Alan Pardew, were flying. This season they`re embroiled in a relegation fight and after being thrashed 6-0, at home, by Liverpool last week, will be looking to bounce back and climb away from the relegation pack. But West Ham, as we all know, are a decent side at home and I reckon Big Sam will have the boys up for this, therefore I`m going for an Andy Carroll inspired West Ham to send the Bar-Codes home on the end of a 2-0 defeat.
As the season slowly meanders towards its closure, our next fixture is a Premier League one against Everton, at Goodison Park, on Sunday 12th May.