Slaven Bilic’s West Ham United started the New Year with a loss to Manchester United at home, but the manager will know that his side are not too far away from a place in the top half of the table. The Hammers are struggling in the Premier League to find some consistency but this week, they can take a break from the pressure of the domestic league and can turn their attention to the domestic cup competition.
The London outfit were drawn a tough game in the third round of the FA Cup as Slaven Bilic’s side welcome Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City this weekend. Both teams will look at this competition as a shot at silverware and will go with strong sides and here is the predicted lineup that Bilic might field for this game:
The manager will still be without the services of Alvaro Arbeloa, Reece Oxford, Gokhan Tore, Diafra Sakho, Sam Byram and James Collins for this game against City. Andre Ayew and Chiekhou Kouyate are off to the AFCON while Mark Noble and Simone Zaza are expected to be back in action for this tie. Sofiane Feghouli is set to miss this clash through suspension.
Expected Lineup (4-3-3):
Though not the first choice anymore this season, Adrian is a decent shot stopper and should get his chance in the first team for this FA Cup tie.
The first choice right back for West Ham, Nordveit should keep his place in the first team for this crunch clash.
The backbone of the West Ham defense, Reid is an important player for the Hammers, and he should have a good game if his side are to stay in the hunt for the Cup.
The Italian has been decent at the back for West Ham but he will have a tough game against a fluid Manchester City attack in this game.
Keeping the back-4 intact, Creswell, who has been impressive at times this season, should start this game at left back for West Ham.
An unused substitute in the previous game, Noble should be fresh and ready to go to take on Manchester City in the third round of the FA Cup this weekend.
Having put in a decent performance against Manchester United in the previous game, Obiang should keep his place in the midfield for this game.
The versatile winger has been one of the most effective players for West Ham this season and he should keep his place on the wing for this FA Cup tie.
The French international is the biggest attacking threat for West Ham and Manchester City should be careful of the threats that he can pose in the final third.
The midfielder was lively in the previous game against United and Slaven Bilic will hope that he can put in a similar effort in this game against Manchester City.
The towering English striker is expected to start this game as West Ham will look to exploit the ariel weaknesses in the squad that is travelling from the Etihad.