After dealing with the threat of Tottenham Hotspur in their home London derby last weekend, the task ahead of David Moyes in Saturday’s early kick-off is to see if he can manage a similar outcome as West Ham United travel to current league leaders Manchester City.
The victory over Spurs meant that the Hammers moved into the top four following Chelsea’s 1-1 draw at Southampton a day earlier.
Whilst the Irons can take positives into the game from drawing on the fact that the reverse fixture back in October ended in a 1-1 draw, the omens might also be in their favour here. Although Josep Guardiola’s men are currently on a nineteen-match unbeaten run in all competitions, they will be mindful of the fact that they have had less time to prepare for this fixture than the Hammers.
The hosts played a UEFA Champions League game three days ago and after this encounter, they have another match to prepare for as they entertain Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League next Tuesday. This means that the visitors may seek to take advantage of their busy fixture schedule.
West Ham’s loyal fan base may remember that Moyes wasn’t too far away from leading his team to victory here during his first stint in charge back in December 2017 but unfortunately, the Citizens had enough time to turn the tables, as they eventually ran out 2-1 winners.
Having said that, the Scotsman has won on thirteen previous occasions against this weekend’s opponents and he will be desperate to stretch that particular statistic.
Darren Randolph was back from injury against Spurs so the Irishman, along with fellow goalkeeper David Martin were both named amongst the substitutes and it will be interesting to see whether the manager names them both in the squad again.
The Irons’ boss may have to make changes on his bench, as Ryan Fredericks is unable to make the trip due to a groin injury, while Andriy Yarmolenko is also unavailable.
Saturday’s match is a 12:30pm kick-off with live coverage being screened by BT Sport from 11:30am. The referee is Michael Oliver.