Well, well, well, after so much promise and optimism coming into the season who would of thought Everton would find themselves taking on West Ham in a relegation six-pointer in November.
David Unsworth is set to take charge of his eighth game in the managerial hot seat, but if reports are to be believed then it could be Rhino’s last, with ex-West Ham boss Sam Allardyce looking to be back in the frame to take over.
But if it is to be Unsworth’s last game he will be desperate to improve on his record, with five of his seven games ending in defeats – shipping 20 goals in the process!
The Hammer’s find themselves in the bottom three, just the two points behind Wednesday nights hosts, without a league win since the back end of September, a run which has seen the end of former Everton defender Slaven Bilic’s reign at the club and the Croatian since been replaced by former Everton manager, David Moyes. A 2-0 loss to high-flying Watford and a draw against Leicester so far for the Scot.
A good omen, or a massive jinx depending on how you look at it, since Moyes left Everton he has come up against the Toffees four times, losing all four and every game has ended with the Blues picking up a clean sheet.
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Although he hasn’t found the back of the net so far this campaign, Andy Carroll will be licking his lips in anticipation for a side who have conceded nine in their last two outings. A man whose food and drink is winning headers, the 6ft4 Englishman will have seen Charlie Austin’s identical double against a frail Everton defence and the 28-year-old will fancy his chances of opening his 2017/18 account when he lines up against the Blues.
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Tricky Argentine attacker Manuel Lanzini has all the qualities to drag a lacklustre West Ham outfit to the wins they desperately need, a danger from set pieces, something the defence will have to consider. Mostly operating from the left, whether it be Jonjoe Kenny or Cuco Martina who get the nod, they’ll have a big job on their hands stopping the West Ham man.
Javier Hernandez wont feature, the Mexican is yet to feature under Moyes, having picked up an injury before his arrival. James Collins and last season’s top scorer, Michail Antonio, are doubtful for the Hammers.
Both sides are in dire need to stop their respective rots, with a win for either team going along way in their fights to avoid the dreaded drop – a loss will be nothing short of catastrophic, neither side can afford to not get the much needed three points.