West Ham welcome Liverpool to the London Stadium on Monday evening in a Premier League clash which could have serious repercussions at the top of the table.
The Hammers have been out of sorts recently and will be looking to bounce back from a disappointing 3-0 defeat against Wolves last Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Liverpool were uncharacteristically nervy during a 1-1 draw against Leicester on Wednesday, so they will be looking to strengthen their grip on the top spot.
Here are three key battles which could decide Monday’s clash.
3. Felipe Anderson vs James Milner
Felipe Anderson has been West Ham’s standout forward this season, with his electric pace and intricate footwork causing plenty of full backs all sorts of problems.
The Brazilian has now gone five Premier League games without a goal or an assist, but given how well he has been performing for much of the season, that barren run is likely to come to an end sooner rather than later.
He’ll be looking to cause chaos down the left flank as Liverpool are still without both Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez, so James Milner is set to return at right-back after serving a one game suspension.
2. Declan Rice vs Fabinho
Declan Rice has been a consistent force at the heart of West Ham’s midfield all season and, despite his tender years, he is one of the first names on the team sheet for Manuel Pellegrini.
He’ll have a lot of responsibility on his shoulders on Monday as he looks to stamp his authority on a game where West Ham are not expected to dominate in terms of possession.
He’ll be tasked with preventing Fabinho from dictating the tempo of the game, as he did when he came off the bench to face Leicester on Wednesday evening.
1. Angelo Ogbonna vs Mohamed Salah
Angelo Ogbonna is set to start in central defence, on account of the fact that Fabian Balbuena and Winston Reid are both set to miss out again through injury.
The Italian has been far from convincing in his recent performances and he could have his work cut out if Mohamed Salah is in the mood on Monday.
The Egyptian remains the Premier League’s top scorer but he has been a little inconsistent compared to last season. He was off the boil against Leicester, so expect him to come out with a point to prove.
Global Express News