West Ham continue their push to reach next season’s Champions League group phase when they host Newcastle United in a Premier League showdown at the London Stadium on Saturday afternoon (12:30 UK time).
David Moyes’ men come into this latest round of fixtures sitting in fifth and two points behind Manchester United who occupy fourth spot. However, last time out the Hammers were unable to register back-to-back wins as they were held to a 2-2 draw at Leicester City, after going 0-1 up West Ham found themselves 2-1 down heading into the final minute when Craig Dawson rescued a point.
As for Newcastle, the once relegation-threatened side have escaped the drop zone after winning their last three matches on the bounce, they nonetheless are four points above the bottom three with 15 matches remaining this season. Since being installed as Magpies manager, Eddie Howe has won four of his 11 games in charge, with one of those successes coming on the road (0-1 at Leeds United on matchday 23).
West Ham: Fabianski; Coufal, Dawson, Zouma, Cresswell; Soucek, Rice; Bowen, Lanzini, Fornals; Antonio.
Newcastle: Dubravka; Krafth, Schar, Burn, Targett; Willock, Shelvey, Joelinton; Fraser, Wood, Saint-Maximin.
There’s one major absentee for the Hammers this weekend though it has no major impact on Moyes’ selection. Angelo Ogbonna is expected to return ahead of next season. Elsewhere there shouldn’t be too many changes from the lineup he picked against Leicester last time out.
Newcastle suffered a major blow when major winter signing Kieran Trippier suffered a foot injury in their 1-0 win over Aston Villa, the England international came off 13 minutes after netting the games only goal, he joins a physio room that already includes Federico Fernández, Isaac Hayden and leading marksman Callum Wilson.
- Newcastle and draw double chance at 6/5 with Skybet
- Jonjo Shelvey anytime scorer at 13/2 with Bet365
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Bowen for England?
West Ham’s point at Leicester was largely down to Jarrod Bowen who has been in great form this season. It was the second time in 2021/22 he’d found the net and created another in the same game. This subsequently brought his tally for the campaign to eight goals and eight assists in 25 appearances.
Coming into this weekend, Bowen is West Ham’s leading scorer and assist-maker so far this season, and there’s even a strong case that he’s the club’s most valuable player. The former Hull City man, predominantly used on the right flank by Moyes, is being tipped for a first England call-up by his manager.
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“When you look at the competition for England; Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling, Jack Grealish, Jadon Sancho – it’s a decision for Gareth Southgate,” Moyes told reporters.
“But he’s getting closer to people saying we should have a look at him and see what he can do. I don’t think he’ll be too far away, but the biggest thing is to keep playing well for West Ham.”
Bowen is expected to start against Newcastle but in their previous meeting, on the opening day, he wasn’t involved as the Hammers ran out 2-4 winners at St James’ Park, a game that saw Aaron Cresswell, Saïd Benrahma, Tomas Soucek and Michail Antonio get on the scoresheet.