Our match prediction:
Last year’s champions sit nine points behind their local rivals in the standings and this speaks volumes about how the fortunes have changed for both clubs of late. Following a good run of results, the Blues have seen a major dip in form of late, as back to back defeats to PSG and Everton followed home draw against Stoke, with team’s FA Cup campaign coming to an end in the process. And while Chelsea still have an outside chance of challenging for a top 4 berth, they will be under pressure when facing red-hot West Ham, especially given the 2-0 defeat at Goodison. Meanwhile, West Ham continue to impress on all fronts and they now stand a realistic chance of securing Champions League qualification. Following the away win over Everton, the Hammers sit mere two points behind fourth-placed Man City, and having come really close to eliminating Man Utd from the FA Cup in midweek, Slaven Bilic’s men will be going into the Chelsea game in excellent spirits. We, therefore, expect them to claim another major scalp and edge closer to a top 4 finish.
Highligted Player (Matic):
Nemanja Matic is a Serbian footballer who plays for Premier League side Chelsea. The 194-cm-tall midfielder was born on 1 August, 1988 and he began his football career (youth) at Radnicki Obrenovac. In 2005 he signed for Kolubara and after impressing with Kosice in the 2008/2009 campaign, Chelsea owners decided to sign him. Nemanja spent the 2010/2011 season on loan at Vitesse and at the end of the season he signed a deal with Portuguese giants Benfica, with David Luiz heading in the other direction. Matic was in the form of his life in the 2013/2014 Primeira Liga campaign and he helped the Eagles clinch the domestic trophy. He rejoined Chelsea in 2014 for a fee of €25M and he helped the Blues win the Premier League title in the 2014/2015 season. Nemanja Matic has also developed into a key member of the Serbian national team that have been largely struggling of late.
Highlighted Team (West Ham United):
West Ham United are an English football club based in East London. The club was founded in 1895 and it has to be noted that the club’s name was Thames Ironworks back then. The Hammers were playing their home games at Upton Park from 1904 until 2016, when they moved to the Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. West Ham have won three FA Cup trophies (1964, 1975 and 1980) and they were runners-up in 1923 and 2006. The capital club finished the 1985/1986 England first division campaign in third place in the standings and that is the club’s highest placing in the top flight. West Ham United have strong rivalries with fellow London clubs, but Tottenham Hotspur are considered the club’s main rivals. A number of top-class players were part of West Ham in the past and the likes of Joe Cole, Carlos Tevez, Paolo Di Canio, Paul Ince, Julian Dicks, Shaka Hislop, Michael Carrick and Slaven Bilic are some of them.