Tag Archives: West Ham United

Player Ratings: West Ham United 0-2 Manchester United

These are Fresh Football’s ratings for West Ham United’s home clash versus Manchester United in the Premier League:

West Ham United

Darren Randolph – 6.5

Came up with an important reflex save to deny Antonio Valencia a simple tap-in, with the Irish goalkeeper left with little to work with in denying the visitors’ two goals.

Håvard Nordtveit – 4.5

The weak link in West Ham’s defence, adapted at right back and fully exposed by Marcus Rashford’s entrance in the second half.

Winston Reid – 6

Kept the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic as quiet as possible throughout much of the game, eventually falling foul to an offside goal by the Swede.

Angelo Ogbonna – 6

Much like Reid, Ogbonna kept things tight as best as he could in what seemed to be an inclined pitch following Sofiane Feghouli’s early red card.

Aaron Cresswell – 5

Due to obvious circumstances, we didn’t see the ex-Ipswich Town full back bomb up and down the left flank as often as he would’ve hoped, taking away a key outlet in the Hammers’ attack.

Cheikhou Kouyaté – 5.5

Closed many avenues centrally but also tired substantially as the game went on, allowing for greater dominance by United.

Pedro Obiang – 6

Among the best in a West Ham shirt, evading the bodies situated in the middle of the park to set counters with the ball in his possession, but like his midfield counterpart, Kouyaté, Obiang appeared visibly fatigued in the latter stages of the game.

Sofiane Feghouli – N/A

In his first start for the London club, the former Valencia wide man was sent off rather controversially after just 15 minutes of football.

Manuel Lanzini – 6.5

The key threat going forward, somewhat muted following Feghouli’s red card.

Dimitri Payet – 5.5

Looked sharp in the early exchanges, but he also shrunk in size and effectiveness after Mike Dean’s controversial decision in the game’s infancy.

Michail Antonio – 4

The West Ham top scorer spurned a great chance one-on-one to give the hosts the lead and United weren’t so merciful soon after at the opposite end.


Andy Carroll – 4.5

Came on in response to United taking the lead, but the man most likely to find him inside the box turned out to be the player he replaced – Payet. A missed opportunity from Slaven Bilić, rather than anyone else.

Edimilson Fernandes – N/A

Manchester United:

David De Gea – 7

As reliable as ever, De Gea came up with two big saves to deny Lanzini and Antonio a goal either side of the half time interval.

Antonio Valencia – 5.5

Arguably should’ve scored from close range, didn’t, but there’ll be few complaints from a defensive perspective, which is never a bad thing.

Phil Jones – 6

Another clean sheet for the file, strengthening the defender’s case to enter the defensive equation definitively in the José Mourinho era.

Marcos Rojo – 6

Started the game at centre back, ended it at left back. Solid, once again, in both positions, as his versatility begins to prove fruitful.

Matteo Darmian – 5

Victim of a tactical shift at half-time that saw Juan Mata replace him against 10-man West Ham. A solid, if insignificant, first-half performance by the Italian.

Michael Carrick – 6.5

Very sound in conducting United’s search for a goal, keeping them composed, as they eventually broke through the Hammers’ barricade.

Ander Herrera – 6.5

Typically kept play ticking, pressed high to retain possession and provided a threat late in the second half, as the game opened up. Good again from the Spaniard.

Paul Pogba – 6.5

In the same boat as Herrera, the multi-million pound man grew as the game went on, going close to goal himself a couple of times in the second period.

Jesse Lingard – 4

Hit the post from just yards out in United’s clearest goal-scoring opportunity in the first period, as the 24-year-old failed to inflict damage upon a compact West Ham side prior to be replaced by Marcus Rashford.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 5

Not his finest performance of late, with space to operate in proving to be limited.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic – 5

Starved of service for the best part, but Ibrahimovic still managed to add a goal to his name, despite being in an offside position.


Juan Mata – 6.5

The goal scorer of yet another crucial goal for the Red Devils, as he tipped the balance once more in United’s favour.

Marcus Rashford – 7

The key to unlocking the game, Rashford was able to cause disruptions down the left flank and, crucially, assist Mata for the game’s opening goal.

Chris Smalling – N/A

3 Big Investments You Need To Make For Your Fantasy Football Teams This Week

There’s every chance that it could be another weekend filled with goals, given the sheer amount of relegation “six-pointers” and high-profile clashes coming our way in Gameweek 17 of the Premier League.

Arsenal’s trip to the Etihad Stadium and this season’s first instalment of the Merseyside derby stick out like a sore thumb, but pay special attention to West Ham United hosting Hull City, the clash down on the south coast between Bournemouth and Southampton, Sunderland versus Watford, and many more potentially goal-infested games.

With the festive period over the horizon, we appreciate Fantasy Premier League won’t be the first thing on your mind, which is why this week’s edition of Fresh Football’s tip-offs is dedicated to those players you should look to invest in while you take your eye of the ball. Here are our choices:

Michail Antonio
West Ham United
Position: Midfield
Price: £6.7m

After appearing totally downbeat a fortnight ago in response to West Ham’s 5-1 meltdown at home to Arsenal, Slaven Bilić and his men have managed to grab onto some form with a bounce-back 2-2 draw at Anfield to Liverpool and a 1-0 win over a resilient Burnley side in midweek.

The picture looks brighter ahead of Hull’s trip to east London, with the Irons taking on Swansea City and Leicester City following Saturday, all subsequently languishing alongside them in the bottom half of the table.

West Ham have the opportunity to kick-start a revival and in Michail Antonio, the goal scorer in their 2-2 draw against Liverpool and currently with seven league goals to his name, they have a potential hero guide them out of a precarious situation.

2 – Alexis Sanchez
Position: Midfield
Price: £11.7m

Sunday’s clash sees a reunion between Alexis Sanchez and his former Barcelona boss, Pep Guardiola, who’s had his fair share of success up against Arsenal in European competitions over the years. The Gunners will be without key man Shkodran Mustafi, sorely missed in their 2-1 defeat versus Everton on Tuesday, but list of absentees in the blue half of Manchester also goes a long way into opening up this clash.

Sergio Agüero headlines the list of players Guardiola can’t count on ahead of their next fixture, as he serves part of his four-game suspension, whereas midfield general Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi are joined by İlkay Gündoğan on the sidelines, likely to be out for up to eight months!

Guardiola will be tasked with averting Arsenal’s recent unbeaten run against City, currently without a loss in their last five league meetings, but if they continue to expose themselves as much as they have done with expansive football directly from the back-line, in particular with Sanchez and co. sniffing around, they could land themselves in deep trouble.

The Chilean leading the line for the Gunners has proved to be a revolutionary feature in north London this season, thus far leading the Premier League’s goal scoring charts with Chelsea’s Diego Costa on 12 goals, and with a double-header at home coming up against West Bromwich Albion and Crystal Palace into the New Year, there could well be more to come from Sanchez, starting Sunday.

Theo Walcott is a valid alternative, despite his poor show at Goodison Park this Tuesday, off the back of two goals in Arsenal’s last two home games, as well as occasionally popping up on the score sheet against City over the years.

3 – Diego Costa
Club: Chelsea
Position: Forward
Price: £10.2m

Winning ten out of their last ten games in the Premier League, leading the table by six points, Chelsea are without a doubt the in-form team in the division. A portion of that is owed to Diego Costa, goal scorer of the winning goal versus West Brom last weekend and owner of 11 more throughout this season, with the Spain international promising more from his startling performances.

Next up for Antonio Conte’s man is a date with Crystal Palace; an away trip that is sure to test the Blues’ endurance in what can be considered a gap year for the side relieved of its European duties in midweek, as opposed to many of their title rivals. Chelsea’s last outing on Wednesday saw them settle for a 1-0 win against relegation candidates Sunderland.

Crystal Palace are coming off a strenuous task themselves, however, as they were sunk by an 88th minute Zlatan Ibrahimovic winner in a 2-1 defeat at home to Manchester United, so the fitness worries are also there for the club that’s conceded 31 goals already this season.

Can Costa add to that count? We wouldn’t bet against it, whereas the all-action striker also has winnable home fixtures against Bournemouth and Stoke City to top up his goal scoring antics following Saturday’s early kick-off.

Player Ratings For Both Teams: Tottenham Hotspur 3-2 West Ham United

These are Fresh Football’s ratings for Tottenham Hotspur’s London derby versus West Ham United at White Hart Lane.

Tottenham Hotspur

Hugo Lloris – 5

Nothing of note from the French goalkeeper, who was fairly powerless in stopping Michail Antonio’s opening goal and the penalty converted by Manuel Lanzini later on.

Kyle Walker – 5

Spurs will be left wanting more from the full back in the direct duel with Aaron Cresswell on the right flank, whereas his general play also proved to be a little rough around the edges, today.

Eric Dier – 6

A solid performance from Eric Dier, slotting in at centre back without any considerable concerns.

Jan Vertonghen – 7

Provided a platform to play out from the back, as always, and came up with a few crucial tackles at a time when the hosts were chasing the game.

Danny Rose – 6

Much like Walker, Rose looked unable to function down the flanks as he’s accustomed to doing, but he did manage to get the better of Antonio on a few more occasions in the second half, most importantly in the lead-up to Harry Winks’ equaliser.

Victor Wanyama – 6

The Kenyan undertook fairly simplistic duties throughout the second half, but did so very well, sweeping up possession in the middle of the park to set Spurs back on their way to attacking West Ham.

Mousa Dembélé – 6

He’ll have had more dominant performances, but Mousa Dembélé appeared relatively neat in possession nonetheless, before being replaced by Son Heung-Min

Harry Winks – 8

Intensity, tenacity, creativity and an important goal, all on the 20-year-old’s Premier League debut. A very mature performance.

Christian Eriksen – 5

The Dane is currently a long way away from what we’ve been used to seeing from him in a Spurs shirt, acting as a chief culprit in losing possession in this one.

Harry Kane – 6

Operating around Vincent Janssen in a two-striker formation, Kane never quite got into the game, but his mark on the occasion is there for all to see; Two goals, three points.

Vincent Janssen – 4

Lacking synergy between him and Kane, as well as many more of his teammates. The Dutchman is looking increasingly difficult to fit into the first XI, especially with Son thriving.


Son Heung-Min – 6.5

A big introduction into the game, having a helping hand in both of Spurs’ late goals that gives the home side all three points and maintains invincibility in the Premier League.

Dele Alli – 5

Didn’t quite have the desired effect coming on in the second half, as difficult as it may be in a derby.

West Ham United

Darren Randolph – 7

Made a few key saves, particularly one from an Eric Dier header in point-blank range, but the Irishman was arguably at fault for the turnaround when his attempted save from Son’s cross diverted the ball away from Angelo Ogbonna and into Kane’s path.

Michail Antonio – 6

A great first half display up and down the right flank, complete with yet another headed goal, but the Englishman may well have blown his engine in the second period, as Rose and Son exposed his defensive flaws on a number of occasions.

Cheikhou Kouyaté – 7

A quality performance from Kouyaté, somewhat of a throwback to his Anderlecht days when instructed to play as the third central defender. The towering figure did very well, particularly in the first half when driving the ball out from defence to commence purposeful counter-attacks.

Winston Reid – 6

A solid performance from the captain was later marred by the Spurs turnaround and a second yellow card in injury time.

Angelo Ogbonna – 6

Another who, like Reid, performed to a good standard in the heart of defence.

Aaron Cresswell – 6

In the left wing-back role, Cresswell specialised in minimising Kyle Walker’s effectiveness

André Ayew – 4

West Ham will have been hoping for spurts of inspiration from Ayew, but the opportunities for the Ghanaian never came.

Pedro Obiang – 6.5

Stood his ground in quite an offensive midfield from the Hammers, on top of being the go-to-guy to settling down play in certain phases of the first half.

Manuel Lanzini – 7

Among the best in a West Ham shirt, it was Lanzini who spearheaded the counters for the visitors and caused Tottenham’s defence the greatest cause for concern.

Dimitri Payet – 4

Totally uninspired, perhaps fatigued, and how the Hammers could have done with an on-song Payet for certain openings late in the second half.

Diafra Sakho – 4

Lots of running and little else from the striker who was soon replaced by Simone Zaza in the second half.


Simone Zaza – 6

Provided greater involvement from as a focal point, perhaps courtesy of the game opening up, but lacked any real conviction from shooting areas. A positive cameo, however.

Edimilson Fernandes – 5

The young Swiss was on hand to rejuvenate the West Ham midfield as best as he could and combat the eventual Dele Alli entrance.

Håvard Nordtveit – N/A

Few were the minutes the former Arsenal man had on the field, but it was he who turned out to be among the most decisive characters of the tale, sweeping Son’s foot and gifting Spurs the late penalty that won the clash.

3 Must Have’s For Your Fantasy Football Teams: A “Striker-less” Edition

Back for our weekly overview of players to look out for in Fantasy Premier League football, games such as José Mourinho’s return to Stamford Bridge and the early season basement battles between Hull City and Stoke City, as well as West Ham United at home to Sunderland, take us into Gameweek 9. Here are three stars to keep tabs on in what promises to be a cracking weekend of football.

1 – Seamus Coleman

Position: Defender
Price: £5.5m

Among the madness and hyperbole surrounding a couple of renowned Manchester clubs, Everton are going quietly about their business and, with relative success thus far, have found themselves sitting pretty in the top 6.

And meanwhile all three points have escaped the Toffees’ grasp for over a month now, a hard fought draw away to Manchester City pushes Ronald Koeman’s side into a clash against 14th-placed Burnley, also on a winless streak, with new-found positivity.

Burnley will be without their new signing Steven Defour and star striker Andre Gray when hosting the Merseysiders, whereas the visitors boast a neat record of conceding just three goals on their travels.

Pay close attention to Seamus Coleman in this one, likely to pick up valuable clean sheets and maybe chip in with a goal and/or assist while he’s at it.

Transfer Window Rankings (12th-9th): Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea & West Ham Feature

As two of the most free-spending managers in football history, José Mourinho and Pep Guardiola, paved way for the arrival of more high-profile managerial switch-a-rounds, it’s perhaps no surprise to see Premier League clubs shatter the records of expenditure once more with a £1.165 billion bill, surpassing the £870 million mark set just last season.

In its trail, the relentless cash burning has left a bunch of euphoric agents, players and, for the most part, many satisfied fans with the acquisitions made by their favourite clubs. Some teams went about their business better than others, however.

In the past couple of the days, we’ve brought to you those ranked by Fresh Football as 20th – 17th and 16th – 13th, so here are the next four teams in our power rankings.

12th – Liverpool

Key Incomings: Sadio Mané (£34m), Georginio Wijnaldum (£23.4m), Loris Karius (£5.25m), Joel Matip (Free), Ragner Klavan (£4.25m), Alex Manninger (Free)

Key Outgoings: Christian Benteke (£26.5m), Joe Allen (£13m), Jordon Ibe (£15.3m), Martin Škrtel (£5m), Mario Balotelli (Free), Lazar Marković (Loan), Brad Smith (£3m), Luis Alberto (£4.25m), Kolo Toure (Free), Andre Wisdom (Loan), Ádám Bogdán (Loan), Jordan Rossiter (Free), Jerome Sinclair (Free), José Enrique (Released).

Sadio Mané was signed from Southampton for an elevated fee in expectation that he could be a difference maker in Liverpool’s new fluid attack, with the Senegal international doing just that in his debut versus Arsenal last month.

The signing of Georginio Wijnaldum might also be a little too expensive, but if Jürgen Klopp can mould him into a consistent system, he too will be very useful for the Reds. Weaknesses elsewhere have been addressed with the arrivals of Mainz goalkeeper Loris Karius and FC Schalke centre back Joel Matip, both for nominal fees.

Liverpool also managed to shift much of their deadwood and excess, but the failure to land an alternative to Alberto Moreno at left back could well inflict some damage throughout the season.

11th – Tottenham Hotspur

Key Incomings: Vincent Janssen (£18.8m), Moussa Sissoko (£29.75m), Victor Wanyama (£12.25m), Pau López (Loan), Georges-Kévin N’Koudou (£9.3m).

Key Outgoings: Nacer Chadli (£13m), Ryan Mason (£13m), Nabil Bentaleb (Loan), Federico Fazio (Loan), Clinton N’Jié (Loan), DeAndre Yedlin (£5m), Alex Pritchard (£8 million).

Despite spending £70 million in this transfer window, it’s difficult to see just how much this Tottenham squad has improved from last season. Dutch striker Vincent Janssen is one Spurs fans will hope helps share the burden of scoring goals with Harry Kane after a 27-goal season in the Netherlands, but whether he will or not is another matter. The Premier League isn’t short of expensive Eredivisie flops and Janssen has only had one season of top flight football prior to his move to White Hart Lane.

Victor Wanyama adds depth to Mauricio Pochettino’s midfield for a relatively small price in comparison to the norm transfer fee between Premier League clubs these days, whereas there’s also a healthy-looking profit made in replacing West Brom’s latest recruit, Nacer Chadli, with Georges-Kévin N’Koudou from Olympique Marseille.

Shelling out close to £30 million on Moussa Sissoko, however, does look like a questionable signing when looking at the options Pochettino already has at his disposal, but in the meantime, some nice fees were recuperated with the sales of Ryan Mason, Alex Pritchard and more.

10th – Chelsea

Key Incomings: N’Golo Kanté (£30m), Michy Batshuayi (£33m), David Luiz (£32m), Marcos Alonso (£19.5m), Eduardo (£4.25m).

Key Outgoings: Mohamed Salah (£12.75m), Juan Cuadrado (Loan), Loïc Rémy (Loan), Baba Rahman (Loan), Bertrand Traore (Loan), Patrick Bamford (Loan), Kenedy (Loan), Nathan Aké (Loan), Charly Musonda (Loan), Jeremie Boga (Loan), Lewis Baker (Loan), Christian Atsu (Loan), Tammy Abraham (Loan).

N’Golo Kanté’s big-money move from Premier League champions Leicester City is already proving to be fruitful for the Blues, adding some much-needed balance to their midfield, whereas Michy Batshuayi’s impact in attack hasn’t been far behind.

On the other hand, Antonio Conte’s side did struggle to capture a left back and centre back as effectively as they would have liked. Rumours of a move for Wolfsburg’s Ricardo Rodriguez and Kalidou Koulibaly from Napoli came to nothing, with it looking increasingly likely that the club were forced to settle for the likes of Marcos Alonso and Chelsea old boy David Luiz on deadline day, all for packed out price tags.

9th – West Ham United

Key Incomings: Sofiane Feghouli (Free), André Ayew (£20m), Simone Zaza (Loan), Jonathan Calleri (Loan), Gökhan Töre (Loan), Håvard Nordtveit (Free), Arthur Masuaku (£6m), Álvaro Arbeloa (Free), Edimilson Fernandes (£5.4m), Ashley Fletcher (Free).

Key Outgoings: James Tomkins (£10m), Enner Valencia (Loan), Reece Burke (Loan).

After a solid debut season for Slaven Bilić in the West Ham United hot seat, the east London club have given themselves all the conditions to improve upon their 7th placed finishing position with the transfers made ahead of the new campaign.

Valencia’s Sofiane Feghouli joins as a real coup for the side West Ham promise to become, arriving satisfyingly on a free transfer. Håvard Nordtveit and Álvaro Arbeloa also join the Hammers for free, who, alongside the loan signing of Gökhan Töre and £6 million move for Olympiakos’ Arthur Masuaku, back up Bilić’s squad nicely.

The injured André Ayew stands as the most expensive acquisition for West Ham, with his price tag arguably over-exaggerated, but he’s another who can contribute extensively after a good showing at Swansea City in 2015/16.

The options up top were the big worry throughout the transfer window, and meanwhile Jonathan Calleri’s had a hard time in his first set of games in front of goal, his potential has all the time to shine through this season. In the event that things don’t work out for the Argentine often associated with clubs like Barcelona, the Hammers also have Italy international Simone Zaza to turn to, joining on loan from Juventus.

Player Ratings: West Ham United 1-0 Bourenmouth

Here are Fresh Football’s ratings for the Hammers first Premier League game at the London Stadium against Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth.

West Ham United

Adrian – 7.5

Cannot remember him touching the ball in the first half. Had more to do in the second-half though, great save on the 52 second minute to deny king followed by two brilliant reflex saves in stoppage time.

Sam Byram – 7

Solid defensively and offensively, put in some dangerous crosses but was booked for some rash tackles.

Winston Reid – 6.5

Very quiet first half but was solid against a quick attacking line, had plenty to do in the second half and continued to be dominant at the back.

James Collins – 6.5

Much like Reid, quiet on the defensive front in the first half, but composed on the ball and had the better of his man.

Arthur Masuaku – 7

Very good first start for the left-back, kept Ibe at bay and was solid defensively, was always an outlet going forward too.

Havard Nordtveit – 6

Strong in the middle of the park and kept things ticking, struggled a bit in the second half as Bournemouth found new life.

Cheikhou Kouyate – 7

Played as the box to box midfielder with Nordtveit sitting, supported the attack and defence well, all round good performance.

Gokhan Tore – 8

Brilliant play and skill on the right flank and often got the beating of his marker. nearly scored an acrobatic volley in the 58th minute and assisted brilliantly in the 84th, after getting the better of his man and putting in a perfect cross.

Mark Noble – 7.5

Was at the heart of most things in the first half and struck some quick counter attacks with exquisite passing, was more quiet in the second half but another good game from the Hammers captain.

Michael Antonio – 8.5 (MOTM)

Playing in midfield after his horror show against Chelsea at right back, was ok in the first half but did switch off at times, touch wasn’t great but was always looking to make something happen. Scored the winning goal in the 84th minute heading in Tore’s cross which saw him just edge his West Ham teammate (Tore) to MOTM.

Enner Valencia – 6

Quiet and frustrating afternoon for Valencia, was kept at bay by the Bournemouth defence and certainly didn’t do enough as a lone striker.


Artur Boruc – 6

Made a few good saves and more or less dominated his area, could not do much for Antonio’s goal.

Adam Smith – 5.5

Did not support the attack like he did last week and was a rare outlet for Ibe, had his hands full with Antonio.

Simon Francis – 6.5

Very solid first half, often had the ball and tried to build up the play, much the same in the second.

Steve Cook 6.5

Much like Francis, was good on the ball and did not give the West Ham attack a sniff on the ball.

Charlie Daniels – 5

Had a very tough afternoon against Tore who got the beating off him to regular.

Jordon Ibe – 5.5

Frustrating first half, always looked positive on the ball and looked to run his man, needs to release the ball quicker. In the 50th minute he hesitated to shoot and fluffed his pass.

Harry Arter – 4

Was very quiet in the first half and got himself sent off for two ridiculous yellow cards, Howe will be fuming.

Andrew Surman – 6.5

Found it difficult to control the game as Nordtveit and Kouyate dominated the middle of the park, come more to life in the second half and was at the heart of the midfield battle.

Ryan Fraser – 5.5

Byram kept him quiet in the first half but the winger certainly showcased his speed at times, much the same in the second half too.

Callum Wilson – 5

Poor first half, did not create anything and was easily marked out of the game, was a passenger again in the second half.

Joshua King – 6.5

Likewise, similar to Wilson in the first half, poor showing from the striker. Came to life in the second half and saw a brilliant shot saved in the 52nd minute, he nearly got the Cherries a point in the 92nd minute but a fine save from Adrian again denied him.


Jonathan Calleri – 5

Was anonymous apart from missing a one on one in the 94 minute.

Ashley Fletcher – N/A

Pedro Obiang – N/A

Lewis Grabban – 4

Did not do much when he come on.

Nathan Ake – N/A

Dan Gosling – N/A

3 Players You Must Have In Your Fantasy Football Team This Week ft. Arsenal, West Ham, Leicester

Matchday 1 of the Premier League has come and gone and, if you’re anything like me, you’ll most likely have a fantasy team in need of recalibration. Just a tad, honestly! In an attempt to second guess the professionals, here are three players you ought to consider backing before Friday’s deadline.

1 – Dimitri Payet

Position: Midfielder
Club: West Ham United
Cost: £9.5m

Slaven Bilić will be sure to approach the Dimitri Payet case with caution, so his inclusion in your fantasy team would represent a pretty big risk. The West Ham United manager may have to gamble himself on the Frenchman’s fitness, however, with the Hammers looking lost for inspiration every time they got onto the ball versus Chelsea on Monday.

Payet’s introduction late on in the London derby brought a familiar feel to West Ham’s game, so I’d be equally unsurprised if he’s thrown in to face Bournemouth, in particular with the occasion being the Olympic Stadium’s official debut.

The last clash between the two Premier League clubs at West Ham’s place produced a 4-3 thriller, a score line Payet and co. will be keen to avenge. The club have serious ambitions for the Champions League this season so they must ensure they get points on the board this weekend. They need their Payet back.

Player Ratings: Chelsea 2-1 West Ham United

These are Fresh Football’s ratings for Chelsea’s home game versus West Ham United in the Premier League:


Thibaut Courtois – 6

A generally quiet night for Courtois, who was left stunned by James Collins’ half-volley in the 77th minute.

Branislav Ivanovic – 5.5

The Serbian defender was always willing to bomb forward, typically, but his execution was lacking.

Gary Cahill – 6.5

Cahill lost his fair share of aerial duels to Carroll, but remained solid for the best part.

John Terry – 6.5

The Chelsea captain saw little traffic in his neck of the woods, often found circulating possession from the back.

César Azpilicueta – 6.5

Despite being a little detached from attacking phases, Azpilicueta popped up at the right time to win his side a penalty in the second half.

N’Golo Kanté – 8

The former Leicester man looked in total control of midfield from open play, despite being limited by a yellow card that was picked up as early as the second minute.

Nemanja Matić – 6

Matić was regularly involved in Chelsea’s build-up play, but much like his compatriot Ivanović, that final pass was a little bit of an issue.

Willian – 7

The Brazilian caused havoc on the right wing in combination with the roaming Oscar before being subbed off for Pedro.

Oscar – 8

Among the Blues’ most creative components, Oscar also demonstrated through his combativeness just why Antonio Conte could opt for him over Cesc Fàbregas.

Eden Hazard – 8.5

The star of the show, Hazard looked his usual self again on the left flank, torturing the likes of Michail Antonio and Sam Byram before tucking away his first league goal from the spot.

Diego Costa – 6

Nothing seemed to come off for Costa, totally man-marked by Collins, but when Chelsea needed it most, he came up with a goal to clinch all three points in the 88th minute.


Pedro – N/A

Michy Batshuayi – N/A

West Ham United

Adrián – 6.5

Made a couple of good saves to deny Chelsea the first goal of the game, but could ultimately do little to stop Hazard’s penalty or Costa’s late strike.

Michail Antonio – 4

Tormented for much of the night by Eden Hazard, Antonio also made the mistake of trying to dribble out of his own box, subsequently losing the ball to César Azpilicueta and giving away a penalty. The England hopeful was hooked off soon after for Sam Byram.

Winston Reid – 6

Kept things fairly tight at the back before Batshuayi’s entrance saw him and his centre back partner become a little stretched.

James Collins – 7

West Ham’s goalscorer kept Costa under wraps for the best part of the game, but saw the Spain international escape his grasp late on to steal a victory.

Arthur Masuaku – 5

Not the easiest of official debuts for the ex-Olympiacos full back, who was pegged back all game in Willian’s presence.

Håvard Nordtveit – 4.5

The former Arsenal and Borussia Mönchengladbach player was left chasing shadows before making way for Dimitri Payet.

Cheikhou Kouyate – 6

Kouyate looked up for the battle in the middle of the park, which he eventually lost.

Mark Noble – 6

The West Ham skipper attempted to bring the Hammers out of their own half on numerous occasions, often via the long ball to Andy Carroll, but saw his influence silenced by Chelsea’s dominance.

André Ayew – N/A

Injured and replaced in the first half by Gökhan Töre.

Enner Valencia – 4

Plenty of running and nothing else from the Ecuadorian.

Andy Carroll – 5.5

The target man won his fair share of headers, but was starved of action for most of the game.


Gökhan Töre – 4.5

A difficult game to come into for Töre, who also went totally unnoticed.

Sam Byram – 4.5

The right back came on to thwart Hazard, didn’t quite do so before the Belgian’s substitution, but his case to start at right back may have grown stronger after Antonio’s display.

Dimitri Payet – N/A

Chelsea vs. West Ham United: 3 Battles That Will Decide Who Wins

Chelsea’s new boss Antonio Conte enters the Premier League scene under somewhat of a baptism of fire, hosting West Ham United in a London derby on Monday night.

The former Juventus manager can take confidence away from the fact that the Hammers haven’t won at Stamford Bridge since September 2002, whereas West Ham are unbeaten under Slaven Bilić versus the Blues after last season’s results. Here are three key battles to look out for as two London heavyweights come head-to-head:

1 – Gary Cahill vs. Andy Carroll

There’s a lot riding on big Andy Carroll come Monday night, with the English striker scoring twice in the two games against Chelsea in the 2015/16 season.

Carroll also comes into the clash on good form, hitting a brace versus Juventus in their opening ceremony of the Olympic Stadium, which spells danger for the likes of Gary Cahill and John Terry.

Of the two English centre backs, the ex-Bolton Wanderers man has often appeared as the weakest link in the past couple of seasons and remains the most likely defender to drop out of the Chelsea XI should they land someone like Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.

It’s plausible that Carroll, often targeting spaces between centre backs and full backs from crosses, will opt to fall on Cahill’s side rather than the aerially accomplished Terry.

A lot has been made of Ola Aina potentially dethroning Branislav Ivanović at right back, but with the threat posed by Carroll, the Serbian’s presence should aid Cahill.

2 New Signings To Start In A 4-2-3-1: How West Ham Are Likely To Line-Up This Season

It’s with lofty ambitions that West Ham United attack the 2016/17 season. A 6th place finish in the campaign just gone sees Europa League football pending for the Hammers, meanwhile the transfer window supplies a few more Dimitri Payet-esque signings for West Ham to parade around the new surroundings of the Olympic Stadium. Here’s how they could line up:

Formation: 4-2-3-1

Back five: Adrián; Sam Byram, Winston Reid, Angelo Ogbonna, Aaron Cresswell*

Perhaps the greatest blemish in one of West Ham’s finest seasons for decades was the amount of goals shipped in throughout their league campaign. Conceding 51 times in their 38 games, the Irons’ defence leaked in at least 10 more goals than those directly above them in the table.

With the partnership between Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna growing stronger and the injured Aaron Cresswell excelling at left back, the most flagrant reason for West Ham’s defensive shortcomings points towards the vacancy left at right back by Carl Jenkinson’s lengthy injury last season. West Ham boss Slaven Bilić turned to backup centre back James Tomkins, now at Crystal Palace, to occasionally fill in the gaps, as well as January signing Sam Byram and, eventually, Michail Antonio.

Although Byram’s performances proved to be satisfactory when called upon, the 22-year-old’s arrival mid-season complicated his trajectory to the starting line-up. With a full season now ahead of him, the hope is that Byram will now undergo a smoother transition into the first XI, which should in turn see him stand as the preferred option at right back over the adapted Antonio.

Cresswell is widely expected to return to the first team once fit, but the Hammers will be keen to make amends for his four-month lay-off with an additional signing at left back, meanwhile further depth at right back is sure to be recommended in order to avoid the back four inconsistencies experienced last season.

West Ham Fans Delighted With Imminent Transfer Addition

West Ham United fans have got every reason to be happy this summer with a wealth of business being completed- and Angelo Ogbonna should follow in the next few days.

The 27-year-old defender is due to arrive in London for a medical this week ahead of a €12m transfer from Juventus, where he will become the latest player to join up with Slaven Bilic’s new look side.

Whilst Alex Song and Carl Jenkinson are expected to follow, fans are focusing on Ogbonna’s imminent arrival and are delighted with what he can offer the Hammers ahead of a historical final season at Upton Park.

Fans have no doubt that he’s the sort of quality addition that can make a difference to the Hammers’ campaign domestically and in the Europa League, where the East London outfit will feature after securing a place through the Fair Play League.

Is Ogbonna a good addition for the Hammers?

Fresh Football Team Of The Season: Better Than PFA’s?

I saw the PFA team of the year and as usual, didn’t agree. So I thought I’d create the team I think deserves to be there and see what others think. I don’t expect anyone to agree completely with my selection, but opinions are what makes football interesting.

David De Gea – Manchester United

Under close competition from Courtois, de Gea wins this one just about. He has been incredible for Manchester United this season, I very much doubt they would be in the top four without him.

Nathaniel Clyne – Southampton

He will be subject to some big bids in the summer I’m sure. Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United have been linked. A great season from Clyne and he deserves to be here.

John Terry – Chelsea

Terry might be getting on, but he has been brilliant this season for Chelsea. The English defender looks like he hasn’t aged a bit since Mourinho last managed the club.

Laurent Koscielny – Arsenal

Arsenal’s main man in defence, Koscielny’s quality has once again gone under the radar this season. He’s one of the best central defenders in the league, and this season, deserves a place in the team.

Aaron Cresswell – West Ham

The 25 year old deserves recognition for an amazing season. His form hasn’t gone unnoticed by the biggest teams in the league who are reportedly interested. His performances played a big part in the Hammers incredible first half of the season.

Eden Hazard – Chelsea

No need to justify this guys inclusion. The Belgian has been in terrific form all season and has been named the PFA Player of the Season.

Morgan Schneiderlin – Southampton

The Southampton midfielder is wanted by most of the Premier Leagues top four – you can see why. He has been a central figure to Southampton’s success this season and has even added goals to his game.

Cesc Fabregas – Chelsea

The most assists in the league. 16 assists in one season warrants a place in this team. Although his form has faded somewhat since Christmas (as have much of the Chelsea team) he still deserves to be in this team.

Alexis Sanchez – Arsenal

The Chilean has had an explosive start to his Premier League career. With 14 Premier League goals he has exceeded expectations. No doubt about his inclusion in this team, despite again not being as impressive in the second half of the season.

Sergio Aguero – Manchester City

Aguero was somehow left out of the PFA team despite, in my opinion being the best striker in the league this season. Whilst many City players have under performed this season, Aguero has bagged 21 Premier League goals – more than any other player.

Harry Kane – Tottenham

It’s been an explosive year for the Tottenham striker. He’s established himself as a top player this season, and whether he ca continue that form into next season is questionable, but his position in this eleven is not.

Subs: Thibaut Courtois, Emre Can, Jose Fonte, Francis Coquelin, Santi Cazorla, Christian Eriksen, Diego Costa

Unlike many team of the seasons, this side actually has balance. By that I mean it has a chance of winning real games against challenging opponents. I’ve seen too many teams flooded with all attacking midfielders and strikers, purely to include all the attacking talent on show in the league. The reality is there is a lot more to football than attack, and this team, and bench appreciates that.

What do you think of this team and what do you think of the PFA’s team? Tweet us at @FreshFootball.

Hero Or Villain?: Tottenham Penalty Incident Debated By Twitter

Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane was praised for his heroics yesterday after his last-gasp goal secured a 2-2 draw against West Ham, with the Lilywhites coming from two goals down in the second-half.

Harry Kane saw his injury-time penalty saved but the ball came straight back out to him, allowing him to tuck away his ninth league goal of 2015- meaning Lionel Messi is the only player in Europe’s top five leagues to score more goals domestically this term.

It also secured Tottenham’s 16th point of the season in the final ten minutes, keeping them well in the running for the battle for a Champions League place. However, some fans weren’t happy with his alleged dive.

Gossip: Arsenal & Saints Battle For Midfielder, West Ham Target Atletico Star

Welcome to the Fresh Football gossip column. Each week (or maybe slightly more regularly) we will review the gossip, give our thoughts and then pick out the best tweet from the fans for each rumour.

Arsenal and Southampton battle for 21-year-old Juan Quintero of Porto (Daily Star)

With the two sides locked in a battle for the final Champions League place, their new arena will now be off the field. Quintero is wanted by the Saints on-loan, whereas Arsenal have been linked with a permanent offer. To be honest, Southampton would be the better fit for him as he would get more game time, rather than in an already jam-packed Arsenal squad.

West Ham Target Atletico Madrid’s Mario Suarez (Daily Mail)

West Ham are looking optimistic in the transfer window as they want to bring Atletico Madrid’s Spanish midfielder Mario Suarez to the Boelyn Ground. However, the La Liga winner is set to have offers from AC Milan, whilst Arsenal have also been linked with his signature. Whilst it’s certain he will improve West Ham’s squad, you’d have to question whether he would leave a Champions League side for the East End of London…

Real Madrid Beat English Sides To Martin Odegaard (Various)

A major blow has been handed to a number of Premier League sides, including Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea, with the news that Martin Odegaard is set to join Real Madrid.

The 16-year-old is one of the most highly-rated youngsters in world football and he will go straight into the first-team at the Bernabeu. Given his talent, it’s a real shame we won’t get to see him establish himself in the Premier League- and a massive blow to the other interested parties.

‘England Will Be Calling’: West Ham Fans Praise Young Defender

West Ham United fans were full of praise for young left-back Aaron Cresswell this weekend, as he scored the only goal of the game in a 1-0 victory against in-form Newcastle United.

The Hammers defender netted his first Premier League goal of his career and helped secure a clean sheet, which led to manager Sam Allardyce calling him ‘Mr. Dependable’. West Ham fans on Twitter were also delighted with the player’s contribution and congratulated Cresswell on his milestone- but many are predicting this is just the first step towards a bright career.

Fans are now calling for Cresswell to be among England’s next international squad, stating that he is performing better this season than current internationals Leighton Baines and Luke Shaw.

‘Something Dodgy’: Newcastle Fans Suggest Match-Fix After Red Card

Newcastle United’s recent run of form was ended by West Ham United this weekend, as the Hammers beat the Magpies 1-0. However, the main focal point of the game was a strange red card for Moussa Sissoko.

The Newcastle midfielder, who wore the captain’s armband for the game, was sent off after picking up two yellow cards in a matter of seconds- 46 to be precise, just eight of those while the ball was in play. It was a very bizarre incident and it didn’t take long for many to suggest foul play, believing Sissoko may have deliberately received his marching orders.

Should their be any evidence to suggest this is correct then the Football Association will take serious action- but for now we can file it under conspiracy, alongside Area 51 and Adolf Hitler living in South America after the Second World War.