Chelsea – West Ham Match Preview
Chelsea’s last five Boxing Day matches have seen a total of only six goals scored, since their famous 4-4 draw with Aston Villa in 2007 where as a defeat to Arsenal last season ended a run of three consecutive Barclays Premier League wins on Boxing Day for the Hammers. Sam Allardyce has managed only two wins in 21 BPL matches against Chelsea, and no wins against Jose Mourinho but his three draws have all come in away matches (in four visits to Stamford Bridge).
In last season’s clash the east Londoners headed west in January last season, grinding out a 0-0 draw in a match in which Chelsea fired in 39 shots on the West Ham goal and Jose Mourinho branded the hammer’s style of play like “football from the 19th century” in the aftermath of the fixture, with Allardyce’s men battling relegation at the time. The funny thing was that Mourinho seemed to forget this when Chelsea visited Liverpool at the end of last season and he played with 6 defenders and parked his infamous bus on the Anfield playing field. That point left West Ham 18th in the Barclays Premier League, they head to Chelsea this time fourth in the table after a season, which has seen Allardyce implement a free-flowing style.
West Ham United goalkeeper Adrian believes they can travel to Chelsea on Boxing Day confident of taking three Barclays Premier League points. “I think that this game on Boxing Day and this season is so different because we have many combinations and possibilities to attack, our football is different,” he told the London Evening Standard. “Of course, we are away from home and we still need to be resolute but this time we have attacking players and we are fourth in the Premier League.
James Tomkins (thigh injury) is Allardyce’s only injury doubt, though Mourinho could be without Eden Hazard after the Belgian winger hurt his ankle in Monday’s 2-0 win at Stoke City. The Chelsea manager is not perturbed by fitness issues in the hectic Christmas period, however, and hailed English football’s festive traditions. “I have lots of respect for the players in this country, it doesn’t matter English or not English,” he said. ” In this moment the German guys are on the beach, the Spanish guys are in the Maldives getting the sun and everybody is doing that but in this country you play Boxing Day, you play on the 28th, you play on the first of January. No family, no Christmas, just football and I think they deserve respect. The supporters all around the country, then give them that respect they deserve by selling out every stadium and I think that is the way to do it with the professionalism every player has today in the Premier today.”
In the 5 matches between Chelsea and West Ham at Stamford Bridge there have been 5 home wins and 2 draws with the Hammers yet to win.
Our probable Formations are:
Chelsea (188.8.131.52) Courtois, Azpilicueta, Terry, Cahill, Ivanovic, Fàbregas, Matic, Hazard, Oscar, Willian and Costa.
West Ham (184.108.40.206) Adrian, Jenkinson, Collins, Reid, Cresswell, Nolan, Song, Kouyaté, Downing, Carroll and Sakho.