West Ham vs. Leicester City
Venue: London Stadium
Kick off: 2:05PM
A crucial top-four showdown will take place at the London Stadium this afternoon when West Ham United host Leicester City in the Premier League.
The away team has been victorious in four of the last eight top-flight meetings between the Hammers and the Foxes, although the visiting side has not won both league encounters in the same season since the 1929-30 campaign.
West Ham kept their top-four hopes alive with an entertaining 3-2 away victory at Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday evening.
A stunning solo goal from Jesse Lingard, followed by strikes from Pablo Fornals and Jarrod Bowen, saw the Hammers race into a three-goal lead after just 38 minutes; Wolves fought back with two goals either side of half time, but David Moyes’s men held on to claim all three points at Molineux.
That victory moved West Ham above London rivals Chelsea into fourth place, one point clear of Thomas Tuchel’s side with eight matches left to play.
Only Manchester City, Manchester United and this weekend’s opponents Leicester have won more Premier League games than the Hammers so far this campaign, and Moyes has insisted that their top-four challenge is “not a fluke”.
Heading into this weekend’s intriguing encounter, West Ham have the second-best home record in the Premier League this season, accumulating 28 points from 15 matches at the London Stadium. Meanwhile, Leicester have the second-best away record so far this term, claiming 34 points on the road.
The Hammers know that they cannot afford many slip-ups if they wish to qualify for next season’s Champions League and defeat on Sunday could see them drop down as low as seventh if Chelsea, Tottenham and Liverpool were all to win this weekend.
Likewise, Leicester must be wary heading down the home straight as their top-four position, which they have held for the last 14 weeks, could be under threat.
Victories in March against Brighton & Hove Albion and Sheffield United kept the Foxes in the Champions League places and despite losing 2-0 to leaders Man City last weekend, they remain in third position.
However, there are now only four points separating them from West Ham and they are just five clear of fifth-placed Chelsea.
Enforced alterations to Leicester’s backline have exposed defensive vulnerabilities in recent weeks; the Foxes have kept just one clean sheet in their last seven league games and on Sunday face a Hammers outfit who have scored in 25 different Premier League matches this season, with only Man City finding the net in more.
Leicester are, however, one of six away teams who are yet to lose a Premier League match at the London Stadium, with the Foxes unbeaten in four, winning and drawing two each.
West Ham United possible XI: Fabianski, Coufal, Dawson, Diop, Cresswell, Noble, Soucek, Fornals, Lingard, Masuaku, Bowen.
Leicester City possible XI: Schmeichel, Amartey, Evans, Fofana, Pereira, Tielemans, Ndidi, Castagne, Maddison, Vardy, Iheanacho.