Chelsea-West Ham United Preview

Ross Houston
March 6, 2017

Costa scored an 89th-minute victor for Chelsea when they beat West Ham 2-1 on the opening day of the Premier League season at Stamford Bridge, but Reid insists the Blues' tactical shift means the lessons West Ham learned that day will not be particularly relevant this time around.

This season the teams played twice - "Chelsea" won the championship, "West Ham" said winning the League Cup, the expense in each of the matches was 2: 1. They played very physical football against us.

Chelsea are priced at around 13/20 to beat West Ham with most bookmakers.

"My year at West Ham was good, I did okay, but it's all about Chelsea now and I'm fully concentrated".

"You have to give your best because you can drop any points at any time in the Premier League". But he will surely be forearmed after experiencing first hand what West Ham can be capable of on their day. They have to go into the Europa League, which is a bit different to the Champions League. Having lost three of their previous five home games in all competitions, conceding 11 goals in the process, they will struggle to contain the myriad of weapons available to the visitors, even without Eden Hazard.

"West Ham's nine Premier League wins this season have all come against clubs who were in the bottom half of the table coming into this round of matches. It will be a really tough game".

Head coach Antonio Conte, who has talked repeatedly about Chelsea needing to be and belonging in the Champions League, is happy to have the team on their way.

The exit of Payet was another setback in what had become a hard season for Slaven Bilic, as the Hammers looked in danger of a potential relegation battle following a poor start to the campaign. The only team with 63 or more points after 26 games not to go on to win the title was Arsenal in 2007/08. "That is crucial. I'm a big fan of him", West Ham's official website quoted manager Slaven Bilic as saying.

"I can see West Ham scoring if Andy Carroll plays but there is so much space at the London Stadium for Chelsea to exploit - as Manchester City have done twice this season - West Ham 1-3 Chelsea", Keown wrote in The Daily Mail. The Premier League clash will be televised live on Sky Sports 1 for viewers in the United Kingdom.

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