Hammers should see off the Toffees

West Ham will be keen for Michail Antonio to continue his fine goal-scoring form. — Reuters

WEST Ham United have a great opportunity tomorrow to continue their outstanding campaign while bolstering their chances of an unlikely top four finish this season — more so with Chelsea travelling to Manchester City.

By some way, the best of the supposed mid-table teams, West Ham could find themselves joint fourth should they see off Everton tomorrow and Chelsea come unstuck at City today. With 54 points from 34 games, only three points separate them from fourth spot ahead of this weekend’s fixtures.

Inspired by two goals from Michail Antonio, the Hammers bounced back nicely from two successive defeats with a narrow but deserved 2-1 win over Burnley on Monday night.

Former Everton manager David Moyes had turned around the fortunes of the London club and a solid finish to their campaign could well see them in the Champions League next season — something he achieved at Goodison Park in 2005.

The Scot, who later went on to fail miserably at Man United, will be keen on Antonio continuing with his good form this term.

The 31-year-old English-born Antonio has nine goals to his credit from 20 starts so far and when fit, remains the Hammers’ chief threat going forward.

Jesse Lingard had remarkably got nine goals from his 12 appearances since his loan move from Man Utd in January and could also figure prominently for the home team, who should get the better of an Everton side that had somewhat lost its way.

Top of the Premiership standings earlier in the season, Everton have won only one of the last seven league games — a rather poor return for a club with top-four finish aspirations of their own.

The Toffees will be hoping Dominic Calvert-Lewin comes with his shooting boots and adds to his season tally of 15 goals from 28 league appearances.

The likes of Richarlison, James Rodriguez and Gylfi Sigurdsson chipping in with meaningful contributions would also be welcomed for boss Carlo Ancelotti.

Liverpool, whose chances of a top-four finish are in the hands of others, take on Southampton today, knowing that nothing short of a win will maintain their remote chances of Champions League action next season.

The Reds, ravaged by injuries, poor form and stricken by sheer bad luck this season, are seventh on the log and seven points behind fourth-placed Chelsea, with a game in hand and four matches to go.

Tottenham, who appear to have been given a new lease of life after the sacking of Jose Mourinho, are coming off a convincing 4-0 win over Sheffield United last week. And they no doubt would desperately like to extend their winning ways to three out of three under interim manager Ryan Mason.

But Leeds United are just as erratic and could spin a surprise of their own, even if Spurs will start as the favourites to win it.

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Metro Central , Sport , Football , FootNotes , West Ham , Everton


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