West Ham United will open their Premier League campaign on Monday when they travel to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea. Slaven Bilic and his team were excellent last season and if it weren’t for the heroics of Leicester City, everyone would have been talking about the Hammers. During the course of last season, West Ham discovered a world class talent in Dimitri Payet. The Frenchman and players like Lanzini made West Ham a lethal team going forward. The pressure will be on the Croatian boss and his players to continue the progress from last season after moving into their new home.
West Ham will be without left-back Aaron Cresswell after he suffered a knee injury during pre-season while Argentine international Manuel Lanzini is out for around four more weeks with a less serious form of the same injury. Havard Nordveit has already come in to add more midfield options, left-back Arthur Masuaku has also arrived from Olympiakos. Upfront Andre Ayew has arrived from Swansea, however, it will be winger Sofiane Feghouli who will bring in the excitement amongst the fans. Here is the predicted West Ham United predicted starting XI that Bilic might opt for on Monday.
Adrian was solid throughout last season and has firmly established himself as the first-choice keeper at West Ham. The Spanish keeper is guaranteed to start on Monday. With a defense line that is relatively inexperienced, his experience will be key to West Ham’s success next season.
Defenders: Reid, Ogbonna, Sam Bryam and Antonio
With Cresswell out injured, Arthur Masuaku has been brought into fill Aaron Cresswell’s shoes, although he is unlikely to start just one week after joining the club, therefore Bilic will most likely go with the tested method of Sam Byram at left back. Antonio will slot in at right-back. Reid will start in central defense alongside Angelo Ogbonna who will be competing for that central spot with youngster Reece Oxford, but the manager may value experience over youth against Antonio Conte’s side.
Midfielders: Kouyate, Nordtviet, Payet, Feghouli and Mark Nobel
There will be two debutants in the midfield that will start against Chelsea. Nordtviet will start in central midfield alongside powerhouse Kouyate. There are doubts regarding the match fitness of Dimitri payet and Gokhan Tore might get a look in but given the caliber of the opposition, Bilic will most likely go with the French superstar. Feghouli will be on the right wing from where he has been a major threat this summer. His arrival has added that extra quality to the starting XI along with increasing the squad depth. Noble will start in that number 10 role behind the striker.
Striker: Andy Carroll
Andre Ayew was signed from Swansea this week, however, he is unlikely to start on Monday, given Carroll superb performance in the preseason.