Preview: Beating the Hammers is a must for Ten Hag! Creativity is a major issue for this United team; as is desire, hunger & determination!

West Ham United -v- Manchester United

Premier League

London Stadium, London

Saturday 23 December 2023, KO 12:30 GMT

Manchester United travel to London on Saturday to face West Ham United at the London Stadium in the Premier League. Erik ten Hag will need to get a win in the capital this weekend in order to change the fortunes of this club heading into the New Year. United drew 0-0 with Liverpool on Sunday.

United go into this match sitting in seventh place in the Premier League with 28 points from 17 matches so far this season. West Ham sit in eighth place with 27 points so it is a clash that could change something for either team at the end of the day. United need the win though.

This season has been a problem for United. From loads of injuries, which have decimated the defensive area of the club to a player who feels he is much bigger than the club – continuing to take wages doing nothing for it. The Glazers have turned Manchester United into a joke over 18+ years.

United – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Liverpool 0-0 D, Bayern 1-0 L, Bournemouth 3-0 L, Chelsea 2-1 W, Newcastle 1-0 L, Galatasaray 3-3 D

Goals: 6 – Scott McTominay, 5 – Bruno Fernandes, Rasmus Hojlund, 4 – Casemiro, 3 – Alejandro Garnacho, 2 – Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford, 1 – Diogo Dalot, Christian Eriksen, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Hannibal Mejbri, Raphael Varane

Assists: 5 – Bruno Fernandes, 3 – Marcus Rashford, 2 – Christian Eriksen, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, 1 – Casemiro, Diogo Dalot, Jonny Evans, Alejandro Garnacho, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Anthony Martial, Lisandro Martínez, Scott McTominay, Mason Mount, Facundo Pellistri, Luke Shaw

West Ham – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Liverpool 5-1 L, Wolves 3-0 W, Freiburg 2-0 W, Fulham 5-0 L, Spurs 2-1 W, Palace 1-1 D

Goals: 12 – Jarrod Bowen, 9 – Mohammed Kudus, 7 – Tomás Soucek, 5 – Lucas Paquetá, 3 – James Ward-Prowse, 2 – Nayef Aguerd, Michail Antonio, 1 – Edson Álvarez, Kurt Zouma

Assists: 9 – James Ward-Prowse, 5 – Vladimír Coufal, 4 – Lucas Paquetá, 3 – Jarrod Bowen, 2 – Edson Álvarez, Michail Antonio, Saïd Benrahma, 1 – Nayef Aguerd, Maxwel Cornet, Emerson, Ben Johnson, Mohammed Kudus, Tomás Soucek

Previous Meetings & Connections

United and West Ham have met 54 times in the Premier League. United have won 33 times, drawn 13 times with West Ham winning eight times. United have scored 103 goals; winning five penalties, scoring four. West Ham have scored 47 goals; winning four penalties, scoring three.

United have kept 21 clean sheets and West Ham have kept eight. This is always a fiery encounter with discipline is an issue. United players have been shown 66 yellow cards and four red cards with West Ham players shown 76 yellow cards and two red cards.

Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra, Michael Carrick, Teddy Sheringham, Javier Hernandez, Carlos Tevez, Roy Carroll, David Bellion, Jonathan Spector, Ravel Morrison and Jesse Lingard have all played for United and West Ham during their careers. There may well have been others too.

Team News

Lisandro Martinez (ankle/foot), Harry Maguire (groin/hip/pelvic), Tyrell Malacia (knee), Casemiro (thigh), Mason Mount (calf/shin/heel) and Amad Diallo (knee) have been ruled out due to injury. Jadon Sancho is still suspended by the club.

Victor Lindelof (other) has a 50% chance of involvement. Anthony Martial (virus) has a 25% change of involvement. Christian Eriksen (knee) has returned to training and could be involved at some point if fit to do so. Bruno Fernandes is back but Diago Dalot is suspended for this match.

Michail Antonio (knee) is the only West Ham player that is out due to injury at this moment in time meaning that David Moyes has a relatively full squad to choose from ahead of the clash with United at the London Stadium. Ten Hag will be envious of this after his injury problems this season.

Predicted United Starting XI – 4-2-3-1

Onana;

Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Evans, Shaw;

McTominay, Amrabat;

Antony, Fernandes, Garnacho;

Hojlund

Predicted West Ham Starting XI – 4-2-3-1

Fabianski;

Coufal, Zouma, Aguerd, Emerson;

Soucek, Alvarez;

Kudus, Ward-Prowse, Paqueta;

Bowen

Match Prediction

United managed to hold a 0-0 draw with Liverpool in the Premier League on Sunday and need to have that level of resolve again as they face West Ham. United did not look like scoring against Liverpool with the home side seeking to score at every opportunity.

Ten Hag will need to pull off a similar tactic against West Ham but this time, get some creativity and score goals. United were in the mix in the league this season but now have started to drop off again. They sit in seventh in the league – with the Hammers in eighth.

If United are to prevail this season, the players will need to stop sulking, realise what the manager has done to avoid problems in the playing squad and get behind him. If they continue to down tools and push for another sacking – this all starts again in 18 months time.

West Ham United 1-2 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

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I support Manchester United, the greatest English football team to have ever existed. Bruno Fernandes is the latest in a long line of players with great ability to play for the club. I idolised Bryan Robson, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, and Eric Cantona growing up.